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The 3BL Media CSR feed - full text version

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    SOURCE:Booz Allen Hamilton

    DESCRIPTION:

    Ebony Thomas embodies the concept that the status quo is made to be broken. Thomas, a senior associate at Booz Allen Hamilton, exhibits a commitment to reach for higher goals. The Network Journal took notice as they named her to the 2018 List of “40 Under Forty” Dynamic Achievers.

    The annual award is given to young African Americans who excel in their professional careers while also devoting themselves to the development of their community. Thomas finds personal inspiration in her work by marrying her professional passion for strategic planning with serving clients that perform work for the greater social good.

    One client venture that Ebony takes pride in was a two-year engagement providing pro-bono support for the Elizabeth Dole Foundation (EDF), a nonprofit with a mission to empower and embolden the family members and friends who act as caregivers to wounded, ill, or injured veterans. The elongated provision of care for loved ones can be extremely emotionally and mentally taxing for the caregiver.

    “Society does a great job recognizing the sacrifices and bravery of the nation’s wounded warriors, but they may not as readily or broadly recognize the corresponding impact and significant sacrifice of the caregivers who treat and care for those heroes—the amount of effort spent on the veterans they care for can be life-altering. Caregivers are a frequently overlooked collective that needs support from others,” said Thomas. It is for this reason that she was happy to support EDF with the development of a strategy complete with initiatives that would further advance their mission and ultimately improve caregiver engagement.

    Ebony started her career on Wall Street, later receiving an MBA in Finance from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She demonstrated significant versatility in changing her career trajectory from pursuing private wealth management to management consulting. Joining as a senior consultant in 2010, Thomas moved through the ranks becoming the first female, African-American senior leader in the then, Military Health market (which has since been consolidated into the broader Civilian Services Group (CSG)).

    Within her community, Thomas is involved with service organizations such as Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT), CALIBR, Per Scholas, and several others.

    “I believe that to whom much is given, much is required,” said Thomas. “Professionally, I am where I am today in large part because of the support of others. The selflessness I’ve been shown motivates me to turn around and show that same support to others within my community.”

    To view the full list of The Network Journal 2018 “40 under Forty” Dynamic Achievers, visit https://tnj.com/

    Want to work for a company that inspires employees to achieve their biggest passions? Visit BoozAllen.com/Careers

    Tweet me:Ebony Thomas of @BoozAllen has been named to @networkjournal #40under40 Dynamic Achievers List http://bit.ly/2uOiHfH

    KEYWORDS: Booz Allen, ebony thomas, 40 under 40, Network Journal


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    SOURCE:Arrow Electronics

    DESCRIPTION:

    This July, a group of summer interns at Arrow Electronics participated in a day of volunteer work at Gray’s and Torrey’s peaks in Colorado, taking service initiatives to an elevation of 12,000 feet. Throughout the day, they performed trail maintenance, guided by leaders from the Colorado Fourteeners Initiative (CFI).

    CFI educates volunteers through service to protect the alpine tundra. Interns were expected to expand or suppress the current trails through the movement of rocks, grass transplant and willow plugs, making the trails safer for hikers.

    The group was greeted by several hikers during the day, many of whom expressed their gratitude for the restoration efforts being made.

    “The experience was an opportunity to pay it forward,” said Emily Scott, an intern at Arrow. “While it was difficult, hearing so many people thank us made me realize the impact of our work. Knowing I was able to help protect the trails made me want to participate again in the future.” 

    Interns who participated also earned matching funds for CFI through the Arrow Charitable Dollars for Doers program. 

    About the Colorado Fourteeners Initiative (CFI)

    CFI partners with the US Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, passionate volunteers and donors to protect Colorado’s highest peaks, build and maintain hiking routes on the Fourteeners to accommodate hiking use while minimizing damage to native alpine ecosystems, stabilize and restore eroded areas and educate hikers about Leave No Trace principles and sustainable recreational practices. For more information, visit http://www.14ers.org/.

    About Arrow Electronics

    Arrow Electronics guides innovation forward for over 150,000 of the world’s leading manufacturers of technology used in homes, business and daily life. With 2017 sales of $26.6 billion, Arrow aggregates electronics and enterprise computing solutions for customers and suppliers in industrial and commercial markets. The company maintains a network of more than 345 locations serving over 80 countries. Learn more at FiveYearsOut.com.

     

    Tweet me:Interns from @ArrowGlobal worked with leaders from the Colorado Fourteeners Initiative (CFI) to perform trail maintenance at Gray’s and Torrey’s peaks in #Colorado: http://bit.ly/2NtCqZv @CO14ers_Lloyd #FiveYearsOut

    KEYWORDS: Arrow Electronics, Colorado Fourteeners Initiative (CFI), Five Years Out

     


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    Donation from world’s largest leisure travel company to benefit Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls - South Africa

    SOURCE:Carnival Corporation & plc

    SUMMARY:

    Company’s chief procurement officer, Julia Brown, presented gift as part of her participation in the Centenary Delegation honoring Nelson Mandela

    DESCRIPTION:

    MIAMI, July 19, 2018 /3BL Media/ – Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE: CUK) today donated $10,000 to the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation (OWLAF) in support of university scholarships for graduates of the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls - South Africa (OWLAG), an independent boarding school founded by Winfrey to provide world-class education to disadvantaged girls in South Africa.

    Carnival Corporation’s chief procurement officer, Julia Brown, presented the foundation with the gift during a visit today to the school in Johannesburg, South Africa, as part of her participation in the Centenary Delegation – a delegation of American executives visiting Africa the week of the famed leader’s 100th birthday celebration to discuss relevant trends and topics and build business relationships. The delegation visited the school as part of South Africa’s national day of service in celebration of Nelson Mandela International Day, observed each year on Mandela’s birthday.

    “I am truly honored to present the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls with this donation, but more importantly, to have the opportunity to meet the intelligent and determined young women at the school that are so focused on their education,” said Julia Brown, chief procurement officer for Carnival Corporation. “This week has been an amazing experience. From having the opportunity to meet with local business leaders to honoring the legacy of Nelson Mandela, our delegation has had the chance to build new relationships and immerse ourselves in the culture and communities that make this region such a special place.”

    The opportunity to support the school builds on the current partnership with O, The Oprah Magazine and leading global cruise brand Holland America Line, a division of Carnival Corporation. The partnership, which started in February 2017 and was recently extended through the end of 2019, includes: cruises featuring members of the magazine’s editorial team and special guest speakers; a variety of onboard activities developed with the magazine’s editors; new programming to be rolled out on many of the ships in the fleet in late 2018; and Oprah serving as the Godmother of the Nieuw Statendam, a maritime tradition for new ships through which she will dedicate the ship in a private ceremony in early 2019.

    In addition to the visit to OWLAG, as part of the delegation, Brown and fellow business leaders participated in a number of relationship-building activities, including:

    • A business summit hosted by the American Chamber of Commerce and The 30% Club, an organization that campaigns for greater representation of women on FTSE100 boards;
    • A reception and dinner hosted by Jessye Lapenn, Chargé d’Affaires at the U.S. Mission in South Africa, and Ray Washburne, president and CEO of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC);
    • Meetings with local business leaders and suppliers;
    • Night of A Hundred Words, the Nelson Mandela Foundation Centenary Dinner to honor Mandela’s legacy and help raise funds;
    • The Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture 2018, featuring former U.S. President Barack Obama.

    As the world’s largest global cruise company, Carnival Corporation has a significant cruise presence in Africa across six of the company’s world-leading cruise lines, including AIDA Cruises, Costa Cruises, Cunard, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises and Seabourn. Carnival Corporation sails thousands of guests to more than 20 destinations in Africa, including stops in Morocco, South Africa, Tanzania, Namibia, Kenya, Madagascar and Mozambique.

    About Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation

    The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation provides funding for the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls – South Africa and is dedicated to helping its graduates attend colleges and universities. In December 2000, during a visit with Nelson Mandela, Oprah Winfrey pledged to build a school for girls in South Africa. In January 2007, the doors opened to the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls – South Africa. Through the Foundation, Oprah has contributed to the empowerment of scores of girls and their families.

    About the Centenary Delegation

    The U.S Centenary Delegation are a well-respected cohort of senior executives with global responsibilities at some of the world's largest and most well respected firms. They are widely recognized as business leaders, subject matter experts and trailblazers across their respective sectors. The purpose of the delegation is to engage in thoughtful conversation with South African business leaders about the vision, business operating environment, opportunities and challenges around doing business in Southern Africa. The U.S. Delegation and Business Summit are being hosted by India Martin, a 25 year veteran of financial services who now runs a leadership, executive coaching and global advisory consultancy, Leadership For Life (LFL), and she works regularly across the continent and is a proponent of the globalization of African brands. The Business Summit was co-hosted by Colleen Larsen. Larsen is the president of the 30% Club of Southern Africa, an organization that aims to develop a diverse pool of talent for all businesses through the efforts of its leadership and members who are committed to better gender balance at all levels of their organizations. Larsen is one of the leading voices for the sustainable advancement of women in the corporate and entrepreneurial space in South Africa today.

    About Carnival Corporation

    Carnival Corporation & plc is the world’s largest leisure travel company and among the most profitable and financially strong in the cruise and vacation industries, with a portfolio of 10 dynamic brands that include nine of the world’s leading cruise lines. With operations in North America, Australia, Europe and Asia, its portfolio features Carnival Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Holland America Line, Seabourn, P&O Cruises (Australia), Costa Cruises, AIDA Cruises, P&O Cruises (UK) and Cunard, as well as Fathom, the corporation’s immersion and enrichment experience brand.

    Together, the corporation’s cruise lines operate 103 ships with 234,000 lower berths visiting over 700 ports around the world, with 18 new ships scheduled to be delivered between 2018 and 2023. Carnival Corporation & plc also operates Holland America Princess Alaska Tours, the leading tour company in Alaska and the Canadian Yukon. Traded on both the New York and London Stock Exchanges, Carnival Corporation & plc is the only group in the world to be included in both the S&P 500 and the FTSE 100 indices.

    In 2017, Fast Company recognized Carnival Corporation as being among the “Top 10 Most Innovative Companies” in both the design and travel categories. Fast Company specifically recognized Carnival Corporation for its work in developing Ocean Medallion™, a high-tech wearable device that enables the world’s first interactive guest experience platform capable of transforming vacation travel into a highly personalized and elevated level of customized service.

    Additional information can be found on www.carnival.com, www.princess.com, www.hollandamerica.com, www.seabourn.com, www.pocruises.com.au, www.costacruise.com, www.aida.de, www.pocruises.com, www.cunard.com, and www.fathom.org

    Tweet me:Carnival Corporation @CarnivalPLC presented a $10,000 donation to the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation. http://bit.ly/2uBXo1k

    Contact Info:

    Ellie Beuerman
    +1 (214) 208-3718
    ellie@ldwwgroup.com

    KEYWORDS: carnival, Carnival Corporation, Donation, Oprah, Oprah Winfrey, South Africa, Nelson Mandela, O the Oprah Magazine, Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy Foundation, OWLAF, philanthropy, Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls, Holland America, Holland America Line, Charity, charitable donation, Corporate Social Responsibility, csr, africa, access to education, NYSE:CCL


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    by John Howell, Editorial Director, 3BL Media

    SOURCE:3BL Forum

    DESCRIPTION:

    Back in the day, corporate strategy meant defining a business mission and describing how those goals were to be reached through business practices. Today, setting a viable strategy means including many factors once considered outside the scope of traditional business planning. Brands are taking stands on multiple issues, from public, cultural questions (climate change, immigration, gun violence) to internal issues (diversity, ethics, harassment, gender pay gap). 

    Consider the new rules:

    • Brand reputation is now susceptible to social trends, as extra-business entities from activists to consumers form movements to push their ideas into business practices.
    • Governance now involves a large measure of risk management of external policy issues, from environmental regulations to discrimination and harassment laws.
    • Employees increasingly demand a say in a company’s direction and practices
    • Diversity and inclusion rule in today’s workplace and with them come a panoply of more complex management and communication approaches.
    • Employee engagement is becoming embedded as part of many companies’ everyday culture, not a bolt-on activity.
    • Supply chains have gone global and complex, with many moving parts to be monitored for such issues as workplace conditions, human rights, and sustainable practices.
    • Market segmentation can change radically with quickly shifting cultural tastes and social trends. Large corporations struggle to keep up with nimble, innovative start-ups.
    • Investors demand more transparency and more data in sustainability reporting, and are increasingly integrating formerly qualitative, ESG factors into materiality via quantification—i.e., they’re in the bottom line.
    • And not least, business strategy as it has traditionally been understood and practiced is coming up against opposing the Trump administration's disruptive economic policy, resulting in unprecedented uncertainty in the marketplace.

    In the past, “The CEO rule was basically keep your head down, stay out of complicated issues, because there were opinions on both sides of any issue,” Lawrence Parnell, program director at the Strategic Public Relations Program at George Washington University told the Wall Street Journal.“It’s no longer a question of if, but where, when and how to engage on these issues and what type of topics to engage on. These are new challenges and things CEOs and boards never had to deal with before, so they are struggling.”

    In sum, corporate responsibility is now becoming a mainstream activity embedded throughout every department of a company, from HR to IR, from corporate affairs to procurement. The bottom line is straightforward: evaluation of a company’s value now depends more than ever on its values being active and visible across all areas. 

    So here’s the new bottom line: businesses and organizations must adopt the largest perspective possible when planning for future growth.

    Want to receive the Brands Taking Stands newsletter by email? Sign up here.

    Continue the important conversations on corporate responsibility long after 3BL Forum with the Brands Taking Stands newsletter. Written by veteran journalist, John Howell, this newsletter is published every Wednesday morning.

    Tweet me:READ @3BLMedia's John Howell outlines the new rules of #corporateresponsibility as #CSR becomes the new bottom line http://bit.ly/2LlCc9u #ESG

    KEYWORDS: john howell, 3bl Media, Brands Taking Stands


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    by Stuart Winchester

    SOURCE:Viacom

    DESCRIPTION:

    Viacom content rolls from screens across more than 180 countries and in dozens of languages, reaching more than 4 billion subscribers. Every single piece of this content is the result of dozens or hundreds or thousands of workers who do everything from directing to producing to lighting to catering to set design – and most of them do not work directly for Viacom; they work for independent companies, vendors that Viacom contracts to execute the particulars of production or logistics or supply delivery.

    This enormous footprint presents Viacom with an equally enormous opportunity: to proactively seek out diverse suppliers, echoing the company’s varied programming and strong internal culture of diversity and inclusion.

    Under the company’s new supplier diversity initiative, led by Viacom’s sourcing team and its Office of Global Inclusion, the company is doing exactly that, actively forming new partnerships that are broadening opportunities for minority-owned shops while bolstering Viacom’s own business by offering a wider array of creative perspectives.

    “When you look at the amount of spend we generate both through media networks and Paramount, it’s an incredible opportunity to diversify our partnership base,” said Viacom Executive Vice President and Global Head of Inclusion Strategies Marva Smalls.

    Identifying diverse partners

    The first step to diversification was to simply catalogue Viacom’s current vendor pool, a massive undertaking. Aside from changing internal procedures to document whether incoming vendors are diverse, Viacom joined several minority-focused councils that work with certified (meaning the businesses are at least 51 percent minority-owned) suppliers: the women’s business council WBENC, the LGBT business advocates NGLCC, minority supplier group NMSDC, and disabled veterans business representatives Disability:IN (formerly USBLN). So far, approximately 1,100 of Viacom’s vendors have either self-classified themselves as diverse or fit into the rubric to be certified by one of these organizations.

    The reach of these certifying councils is substantial. The National LGBT Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC), for example, which claims to represent the interests of more than 1 million LGBT U.S. business owners, which it can connect with Viacom via networking events and access to its deep database.

    Viacom’s goal is to form long-term, immersive partnerships with each organization, underscoring for their members the company’s sustained commitment to diversity. Building such a network also creates an echo affect, a sort of street cred where partner companies validate Viacom’s commitment not just to diversity, but to supporting the small businesses that most of these operations are.

    “If you have that local production company that says, ‘I’m in business with Viacom, and as a result, that allows me to hire more people for my community and where I’m located,’ ultimately, the community will see that,” said Smalls. “We need to be viewed as a company that’s not just taking up space in the community, but actually taking the time to identify small businesses.”

    Viacom is also coordinating with its peers to identify minority-owned businesses. Last year, Viacom co-hosted a networking event with Disney, Time Warner, CBS, NBCU and others, during which minority-owned vendors could meet representatives of many large companies at once.

    Sometimes a nudge is all you need

    One initial contract with a major corporation can be the catalyst for tremendous growth. “The whole purpose behind vendor diversity is to help put a seat at the table for the new, innovative company who deserves a fair shot,” said Senior Vice President and former director for NGLCC New York (and former Logo personality) Jonathan Lovitz. “Our partners at all of our organizations that advocate for diverse-owned companies can each point to the day everything changed for a small business because they earned a chance to be seen by an inclusive industry leader like Viacom.”

    Take, for example, Jax Media, a New York City-based, minority-owned production shop. The company parlayed a single off-the-air Comedy Central presentation a decade ago into production of multiple series for the network, including hit series Broad City. The company also produces TV Land’s Younger and has collaborated with MTV and Paramount Network.

    “We make sure there is an eye toward creating a diverse culture and environment,” said Megan Ring, senior vice president and head of production for Comedy Central and senior vice president of scripted production for Paramount Network and TV Land. “Jax Media’s owner, Tony Hernandez, was just a producer in New York with some great ideas and a different way of thinking. We struck up a relationship and we were willing to take some chances to learn from him, and he was at the same time able to take advantage of access points to Viacom.”

    Nickelodeon similarly points to the experience of Ne’e Leau, the Samoan-American owner of Scenic Storage in Los Angeles, who started as a stagehand with Nick 20 years ago. His business now manages the bulk of the network’s set storage in the city.

    “Ne’e’s experience shows how the diversity movement can work,” said Nickelodeon Executive Vice President of Production Lee Ann Larsen. “We started with the intent to have a lot of diverse people in the company, and then as those people grow in their careers, they start their own companies, and it blossoms into something more for that individual and for the company.”

    While both Nickelodeon and Comedy Central established these relationships prior to Viacom formalizing its vendor diversity program, the rise of their vendors from bit player to lead actor demonstrates the power of investing in a diverse workforce.

    The business case

    One of the core purposes of Viacom’s sourcing organization is to drive either the price or volume of products or services lower. Diversity, as it turns out, is a highly effective way to achieve this.

    “Yes, we are giving these suppliers, who are generally smaller in size, an opportunity to grow their businesses,” said Tom Lardieri, senior vice president of Financial Operations. “There’s an economic benefit to the system, certainly to the diverse supplier, but by bringing in a diverse supplier base, it allows us to drive better service, better quality, better price.”

    A company creating content for diverse audiences also benefits substantially from diverse talent creating that content. “We all have our own life experiences, and very often individuals may associate with individuals who are similar to them,” says Paramount Pictures COO Andrew Gumpert. “But if we have a room with women and men representing an array of perspectives, identities and cultural backgrounds, we’re going to get a unique point of view that produces the best result.”

    Diversity does not mean sacrificing quality, however, and Viacom’s focus remains firmly on identifying the best available talent. “The BET pool of talent comes from all walks of life,” said BET Senior Vice President of Production Michael Siegman. “Yes, we should have more diversity overall and we should open our sites. We strive to hire people because they bring distinctive skillsets and priorities that help us on all of our productions.”

    Defining the company beyond the bottom line

    Viacom hopes to incrementally increase its number of diverse vendors, underscoring the importance of broad inclusivity to the company’s business plan.

    “It’s imperative for this business to define itself more broadly than just the bottom line,” said Lardieri. “People want to know what a company stands for.”

    Indeed, the vendor diversity effort largely echoes the larger Viacom culture. Viacom has spent years curating a strong internal culture of diversity and inclusion, led by Smalls, who says that Viacom’s employee resource groups are often used as a model for companies that want to institute such programs. “We’re not just fostering an environment of inclusion, we’re fostering an environment of belonging, where people feel they’re supposed to be here,” she said.

    “Viacom is very much in the business of diversity,” continued Smalls. “Viacom is not a status quo company. We are not a cookie-cutter company. We’re not just a check-the-box, formulaic kind of company. We want to be at the forefront of driving for a more inclusive environment. We want to champion not just diversity, but we want to reflect the multiculturalism of the world and the people and the product that’s out there, and we want to create a place of inclusion, to be a committed custodian of change and diversity and helping to uplift communities that otherwise are underrepresented.”

    Tweet me:.@Viacom's new supplier diversity initiative seeks out diverse suppliers, echoing the company’s varied programming and strong internal culture of diversity and inclusion http://bit.ly/2O2ru6g

    KEYWORDS: Viacom, NASDAQ:VIA


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    How executives are creating meaningful second careers

    SOURCE:PYXERA Global

    DESCRIPTION:

    When you wonder how you can impact societal issues or find ideas for a career with purpose, get out of your comfort zone, writes Anita Hoffmann, the author of Purpose & Impact: How Executives are Creating Meaningful Second Careers. The book was recently released by Greenleaf/Routledge, and she has kindly contributed the following blog post to summarize.

    Increasing longevity means longer careers
    By 2060, the world will have an additional 2.2 billion 40- to 79-year-olds, and the concept of retirement is becoming redundant as executives seek to continue working well into what is currently considered retirement age.

    Most of us exit our mainstream corporate careers in our early to mid 50s, and can still look forward to 25–30 more healthy and active years. This is sufficient time for a whole second career, as illustrated by Sola Oyinlola’s example, in the book’s opening paragraph:

    “One day in my early fifties, I realised that my boss, our CFO, and I were approximately the same age and likely would retire at the same time” said Sola Oyinlola, at that time Vice President and Group Treasurer of Schlumberger and the only African corporate officer of this world leading French American oilfield services company.

    He continued: “This meant that I was not likely to ever become the company’s CFO and I wondered, what do I do now? Should I stay where I am for the next 10 years or I should I try to figure out how I could create a new career somewhere else? I was also passionately interested in African social and economic development issues, including education and women’s inclusion in the economy. Should I go and work for charities? Or boards? Where could I have most impact?”

    As many executives can testify, finding an equivalent level job to the one you left after age 50 is a challenge. The job market should not be, but is, very ageist. What can seasoned professionals do if they want to contribute their skills and experience to leave the world a better place?

    Continue reading on PYXERAGlobal.org

    Tweet me:Seeking to find purpose and create impact? Get out of your office, writes @Anita_Hoffmann, author of Purpose & Impact, published by @routledgebooks in 2018. Read the summary blog here: https://bit.ly/2sk3AtJ via @PYXERAGlobal

    KEYWORDS: sustainable communities, Dow, decent work and economic growth, sustainable development goals, SDGs, GlobalGoals, PYXERA Global


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    SOURCE:Comcast Corporation

    SUMMARY:

    KEY TAKEWAYS

    1. We mobilized companywide to help employees, customers, and communities during 2017’s disasters.
    2. Comcast NBCUniversal helped generate over $130 million for recovery efforts in all these communities.
    3. We opened a full-time news bureau in Puerto Rico to report on the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria.

    DESCRIPTION:

    A family frantically climbs onto an air mattress to escape their flooding home, their precious belongings floating around them. Water levels rise by the hour. Precipitation falls with force. Dams release water. Relief seems nowhere in sight.

    That’s how some of our customers and employees experienced Hurricane Harvey in late August 2017, when historic rainfall was unleashed on southeast Texas during the four days the storm stalled there.

    But when Harvey was still just a tropical storm developing in the Gulf of Mexico, our Comcast team in Texas was already preparing for possible disaster. They worked hard to establish communications with local governments, employees, customers, and the community at large. Their planning and strategies set a new standard for disaster response throughout Comcast NBCUniversal.

    “As the waters rose, our employees rose to the challenge,” says Ralph Martinez, Comcast Senior Vice President for the Houston Region. “Even though our employees — every one of us — could not get out of our homes for four days.”

    Most of the Houston area maintained Comcast service during the storm. Once employees were able to safely return to work, technicians went out in boats to keep Comcast’s facilities from going down. The majority of outages were in areas where electrical power was disrupted.

    The preparation, communication, strategy, and recovery process for Harvey became a blueprint for the whole company — a blueprint that was, unfortunately, put to the test again too soon. From its hurricanes to its wildfires, 2017 was one of the most catastrophic years on record for natural disasters.

    “There’s a saying, ‘When you’ve seen one hurricane, you’ve seen one hurricane,’ because they’re all different,” Martinez says. New lessons come with each storm.

    Harvey brought more than 50 inches of rainfall in its wake. And two weeks later, Hurricane Irma tore through Florida, causing massive wind damage and far-reaching power outages. 

    Florida Region Senior Vice President Amy Smith put in place extensive storm preparations, which included establishing command centers to monitor our network and deploying fuel trucks outside impacted areas so that they would be ready to support our generators, trucks, and equipment. Additional tests were run on all of our electrical networks and backup power generators for our main facilities. Smith’s team prepared all necessary logistics to have our crews on standby to enter the field as quickly as possible after the storm. Our quick responses and hard work led to an outpouring of social media praise from our customers.

    From coast to coast, the catastrophic floods, winds, and fires of 2017 united us, as people and as a company, with a new sense of resilience and pride. Throughout Harvey, Martinez had a guiding mantra: “We will come out of this better and stronger.” The recovery efforts and outreach during these events revealed that together we are Comcast strong.

    Click here to read the full report

    Tweet me:In the wake of 2017's natural disasters, @ComcastNBCUCI rose to the challenge. Find out how in its 2018 #CSR report http://bit.ly/2zOe0YS

    KEYWORDS: NASDAQ:CMCSA, Comcast NBCUniversal, comcast, Hurricane Harvey

     


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    Solar energy is in bloom at The Renaissance Collaborative in Chicago

    SOURCE:Mohawk Industries

    DESCRIPTION:

    On Wednesday, June 13, an enthusiastic crowd gathered in sunny south Chicago for a celebration of our first smartflower solar system installation, a highly anticipated event that took place during NeoCon 2018.

    The smartflower uses advanced technology to automatically move its ‘petals’ to align itself with the sun at optimal angles.

    Mohawk Group donated the solar flower through our collaboration with Groundswell and Elevate Energy, among others, to benefit The Renaissance Collaborative (TRC), a non-profit organization that supports sustainable and affordable housing and related programming in Chicago. TRC’s offices and its Renaissance Apartments are housed in the restored Wabash Avenue YMCA, continuing the legacy of providing housing and job training in the Bronzeville neighborhood.

    We were all excited to witness the unveiling of the smartflower along with other community partners such as  iLumen, Eco-Solar Solutions, Millennium Solar and SunCatch Energy.

    This was the first of solar flowers to be donated to underserved communities with STEM learning centers across the country during the next three years. The smartflowers will generate an energy savings of 3.3 million kwh to benefit the communities and to support and inspire future sustainability leaders. The electricity produced by the flowers will offset the energy used to create the five new Living Products that Mohawk Group unveiled at NeoCon.

    The new Living Products were developed to have a net-positive impact on the planet and its inhabitants as part of our Believe in Better commitment—creating beneficial handprints while eliminating environmental footprints. That’s why we partnered on our new smartflower program with Groundswell, a forward-thinking nonprofit organization that champions projects connecting solar power and economic empowerment through energy sharing programs.

    Each smartflower responds to the sun, opening its solar petals in the morning and tracking the sun throughout the day to convert the sunlight into electricity, and then closing at night. By following the sun’s rays, smartflowers generate 40% more energy than static solar panels.

    As a result, not only will the solar flower help offset our carbon footprint by creating environmentally friendly electricity, it will also create a perpetual series of handprints, helping to reduce utility bills in order to provide more resources that will benefit the Collaborative’s programming and help them further carry out their mission.

    Patricia Abrams, executive director of TRC, kicked off the smartflower celebration, expressing her gratitude for helping TRC further its mission to create cutting edge solutions for sustainable, affordable housing.

    “We are just really, really excited to have a solar flower in our organic garden,” Abrams said. “We hope it will be a draw for other affordable housing developers.” She went on to thank Mohawk Group and our VP of sustainability, George Bandy Jr., “whose commitment to donate the solar flower helped reduce their own company’s carbon footprint and set an example for other corporations to follow suit.”

    Bandy was excited to officially kick off the innovative sustainability program. “I want to thank the Mohawk team and Groundswell for establishing opportunities to expand sustainability knowledge and solar opportunities,” he said. Unveiling the first smartflower held personal significance for him as well, taking place near his family’s hometown in Chicago.

    After outlining the social and environmental benefits of the smartflower initiative, Bandy also pledged to create a few additional handprints. He announced a commitment on behalf of Mohawk Group to send TRC’s graduating class of solar installers to the Greenbuild International Conference and Expo in Chicago in November.

    Greenbuild, the world’s largest conference dedicated to green building, includes a solar track. Attendance will give TRC graduates the opportunity to network with solar industry designers and manufacturers, potentially leading to permanent employment in their newfound careers.

    At Mohawk Group, we are dedicated to not only create environmentally responsible products that provide flooring solutions for our customers, but to do good for the communities where we live and work. We continually strive to Believe in Better, finding new ways to improve the world around us for everyone.

    *Thank you to Elevate Energy for capturing photos of the event!

    Tweet me:READ all about @MohawkGroup's celebration of their 1st #smartflower #solar system installation in #Chicago http://bit.ly/2mwedpZ @grndswell @Elevate_Energy #solarenergy #solarflower

    KEYWORDS: smartflower solar, solar flower, mohawk group, Elevate Energy, Groundswell, NeoCon, Chicago, The Renaissance Collaborative (TRC)

         


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    SOURCE:Realized Worth

    DESCRIPTION:

    While the definition of corporate volunteering is constantly evolving, it can generally be defined as the encouragement and facilitation of volunteering in the community through the organization by which an individual is employed. If a company simply encourages its employees to volunteer on the weekend without offering any support (like matching the hours with corporate dollars or providing transportation to the volunteer activity), this should not be counted as corporate volunteering. Time employees spend on their own – without a material contribution to the process from the company – should not be reported as time the company donated to the community.

    There are divergent views, of course. The 2011 Alliance Policy Agenda for Volunteering in Europe specifically defines employee volunteering as taking place during work hours and not unpaid time. There’s also the angle of how companies are motivating or incentivizing employees to take part in volunteering. If you’re upping volunteer participation hours in the wrong way, you could end up de-motivating employees at work (if you want to read more about this phenomenon, check out this great blog from Chris Jarvis.)

    By Angela Parker
    Co-founder, CEO, Realized Worth

    Should employees be paid to volunteer?

    When companies offer paid time off for volunteering, are they literally paying their employees to volunteer? Sure, in the same way they pay their employees to take a vacation. This is not corporate altruism. Companies offer paid time to volunteer and vacation because they believe those activities benefit the organization. Paid time off to volunteer demonstrates a forward-thinking belief in the bottom line value and social return on investment of volunteering.

    Some companies don’t have the option to offer paid time off due to budget constraints or bureaucratic hoops. Other companies don’t believe in it (yet). For these companies, just remember: as long as your company is supporting the volunteering taking place through volunteer rewards or logistical resources, for example, you are free to claim the time employees give as corporate volunteer hours.

    Does fundraising and event sponsorship count as volunteer time?

    Yes and no.

    Most companies count fundraising as volunteer time. The key, of course, is being able to connect it to a 501c3. This keeps most inappropriate fundraisers out of the system and usually serves to filter out unwanted activities. The actual time spent fundraising is impossible to verify, so most companies choose the honor system. If employees are lying about their volunteer hours, you have an entirely separate problem to deal with. Regarding event sponsorship, most companies count the time at the actual event and omit anything leading up to it. Training for a charity run, for example, would not be counted. The hours at the run itself would be counted.

    CECP’s Giving in Numbers is a great reference for information on best practices in giving and volunteering.

    Do athletics, religious activities, or political activities count?

    Yes and no.

    Whether athletics, religious activities, and political activities are supported is entirely up to each company’s preference – and in many cases, legal will need to speak into these policy decisions.

    1. Religious organizations: Most companies do not match donations or volunteer hours that are given to religious organizations that solicit in any way. However, most companies do match church-related activities that are in no way religious. (The employee is expected to demonstrate that the activity was unrelated to Sunday school activities, for example.)
       
    2. Political activities: Regarding political activities, most companies do not support these activities in any way. The potential PR nightmare is not worth the effort. A nonprofit, meanwhile, cannot legally be involved in any political activities while maintaining its 501c3 status.
       
    3. Athletic volunteerism: The choice to support athletic volunteerism such as coaching a child’s soccer team is usually affected by two factors:
    • Does the company’s focus area include sports? If health and physical activity is the focus, for example, athletic volunteerism fits perfectly. If the focus is hunger and food scarcity, however, athletics may not work as well. Realized Worth recommends a tiered structure (see below for an example) so focused volunteerism and personal volunteerism can be supported at different levels.
       
    • Does the company’s culture lean toward athleticism? Emera, an energy company in Nova Scotia, has an employee base that is heavily involved in sports. To demonstrate that the program is relevant to who their employees are, Emera chose to support athletic volunteerism.

    EXAMPLE: At tier 1, signature nonprofit partners receive a high level of support and visibility; at tier 2, nonprofits that fit within the company’s focus areas (but are not signature partners) receive a modified level of support; at tier 3, all personal volunteering with eligible organizations is supported with a financial match.

    Other questions we’ve gotten about volunteer time

    1. Do overnight volunteer events count – if so, all night? No. Most companies count an 8-hour day for camping (Boy Scouts, for example) or similar overnight volunteer events. This can be approached similarly to billable time for work while traveling. Time spent sleeping doesn’t count even though it involved a commitment to be away from home.
       
    2. Do volunteer vacations (voluntourism, etc.), sometimes lasting weeks at a time, count as volunteer time? Yes and no. If the volunteering is taking place on vacation, it is a personal choice and should not be matched. However, if the volunteering was facilitated in some manner (and organized by a firm similar to MovingWorlds) and the company wants to encourage voluntourism, then yes. That type of “vacation volunteering” should be counted under the same stipulations as overnight volunteering (8-hour work days only).
       
    3. Does time spent training for a volunteer job/activity counted as volunteer time? Yes. Some organizations require a significant amount of time for training before volunteering can occur (for example, working with at-risk youth). Others include it just prior to the event (like WeDay). Either way, training is a requirement as part of the volunteering commitment so it should be counted as volunteer time.
       
    4. Does time spent participating in an “-athon” like a walkathon count as volunteer time? Mostly, yes. Typically, companies will match the time spent at the actual ‘-athon’ activity. This does not include time leading up to it (training for a charity run) or following (collecting donations pledged). Also, hours per year are typically capped at anywhere from 5 to 25 hours. Without this boundary, you may end up with an employee claiming the time they spent growing their hair to donate it to Locks of Love. True story.
       
    5. Does time spent organizing workplace volunteer activities count as volunteer time? No. Typically, companies count only the volunteering itself. One reason for this is the hours need to be connected to a legitimate 501c3. The opportunity to organize is the investment of the employee; the benefit is realized in the actual volunteering.

    ----------------------------------------------

    What other questions are you dealing with as you write or update your volunteering and giving policy? Let us help you find the answers. Send us an email via contact@realizedworth.com or reach out to us on our social networks like FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

    Tweet me:Learn how to define what counts as #volunteering and what kinds of #volunteerism are reportable. https://bit.ly/2Loq1sC #RealizedWorth #EmployeeEngagement #CSR

    KEYWORDS: volunteer policy, Reporting, measurement, impact, Realized Worth


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    By Faith Bemiss

    SOURCE:Tyson Foods

    DESCRIPTION:

    A $40,000 grant from Tyson Foods is allowing The Food Bank for Central and Northeastern Missouri to offer a mobile pantry benefiting Pettis County residents.

    The Food Bank is a regional disaster and hunger relief network that acquires and distributes millions of pounds of food annually to partner agencies across a 32-county area.

    According to a media release, “Mobile Pantries are refrigerated box trucks that allow The Food Bank to distribute perishable goods to communities that do not have adequate brick-and-mortar pantries.”

    “We are thrilled to team up with Tyson to help Pettis County families put healthy food on the table,” Lindsay Young Lopez, executive director of The Food Bank, said in the release. “It truly takes all of us working together to solve hunger.”

    Click here to read the full article

    Tweet me:$40,000 grant from @TysonFoods funds @TheFoodBankMO Mobile Pantry http://bit.ly/2Nvnb2g via @SedaliaDemocrat

    KEYWORDS: NYSE:TSN, Tyson Foods, The Food Bank for Central and Northeastern Missouri


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    Local NeighborhoodLIFT grants, down payment assistance will help create about 350 homeowners

    SOURCE:Wells Fargo & Company

    DESCRIPTION:

    NEW YORK, July 20, 2018 /3BL Media/ – Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) today announced a total of $250,000 in donations for three local nonprofits to support affordable and safe housing, small business empowerment and health and wellness in the New York area.

    We are passionate about helping individuals, families and communities achieve their goals,” said Fred Bertoldo, Wells Fargo region bank president. “The local initiative grants will help provide affordable and safe housing, provide small businesses with valuable resources and make healthy food options more available to New York area residents. We are excited to see progress in these areas, and we will continue to work together to make lasting change for the better.”

    The Wells Fargo grants are intended to support neighborhood revitalization efforts through the Wells Fargo NeighborhoodLIFT® program from the Wells Fargo Foundation.

    Wells Fargo NeighborhoodLIFT program local initiative grants will be awarded to the following New York area nonprofits:

    • ACCION will receive $50,000 for the New York area Small Business Financial Education Program to empower 200 businesses with technical assistance and counseling. ACCION staff will work with clients to manage cash flow, understand credit, build a strong funding request and achieve financial self-sufficiency. ACCION partners with governments, local banks and community organizations to design and conduct free workshops and webinars on the topics of access to capital, social media, marketing and more — offering numerous innovative mentorship programs in partnership with corporate partners. Topics are based on client interests, and the events provide both educational value and a network of peers in particular business spaces and industries.
       
    • Active Citizen Project INC will receive $100,000 for Project EATS (PE) to operate a network of 12 community-based farms in Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens and Staten Island. The farms provide low-income individuals and families fresh, nutritious, organically grown food at income-appropriate prices in their communities; health and nutritional programs that increase their consumption of healthy food and physical fitness; and farm skills and experience that can lead to job and career opportunities. In addition to the farms, PE programs increase the ability of residents to create, lead and implement practical solutions in their communities that support their wellbeing and ability to thrive. The grant funds will make it possible for Active Citizen Project to acquire and operate two four-season greenhouses to grow and distribute more food to people living on low incomes, as well as provide them with year-round programming.
       
    • Rebuilding Together NYC will receive $100,000 to perform critical repairs and accessibility modifications to five homes in the Brownsville neighborhood of Brooklyn. For elderly and aging residents, navigating their own homes safely and independently becomes more challenging the longer repairs and accessibility upgrades are deferred. Without proper maintenance, individuals are often forced to move into assisted living facilities, which is costly to the person and to tax-payers. In addition, in an effort to generate supplemental income, many homeowners will rent out units in their property, so the condition of those units must be livable so no income is lost and an affordable housing option is not lost. In addition to executing the work at these homes, Rebuilding Together NYC provides healthy home maintenance training to each homeowner served in the interest of preventing expensive repair needs in the future and supporting the owner’s ability to maintain and stay in the home and community long-term.

    About 350 homeowners to be assisted in the New York area

    The NeighborhoodLIFT program local initiative grants are part of an effort expanded to the New York City area in November 2017 with a $8.3 million commitment by Wells Fargo to boost local homeownership and revitalize neighborhoods. The NeighborhoodLIFT program has assisted 138 homeowners in the area by offering homebuyer education plus $20,000 down payment assistance grants, with more on the path to becoming homeowners through the program in collaboration with NeighborWorks® America and its network member, Community Housing Development Corporation.

    “This is a great opportunity to make a positive difference for our residents and future generations,” said Deborah Smith, Community Affairs manager, Wells Fargo Foundation. “These funds will be utilized to meet important needs in our communities, improving lives for so many. Our focus is, and will remain, on lifting up our residents.”  

    Since February 2012, LIFT programs have helped create more than 17,900 homeowners in 60 communities. A video about the NeighborhoodLIFT program is posted on Wells Fargo Stories.

    About Wells Fargo
    Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.9 trillion in assets. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through 8,050 locations, 13,000 ATMs, the internet (wellsfargo.com) and mobile banking, and has offices in 38 countries and territories to support customers who conduct business in the global economy. With approximately 265,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 26 on Fortune’s 2018 rankings of America’s largest corporations. News, insights and perspectives from Wells Fargo are also available at Wells Fargo Stories.

    Tweet me:.@wellsfargo #NeighborhoodLIFT donates $250K for #NewYork area #housing, revitalization efforts http://bit.ly/2msywER

    Contact Info:

    Kevin Friedlander
    Wells Fargo
    +1 (908) 907-1317
    Kevin.Friedlander@wellsfargo.com
    @KSFriedlanderWF

    KEYWORDS: NeighborhoodLIFT, Housing, Grants, NYC, New York, NYSE:WFC, Wells Fargo


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    First in a two-part guest blog series from Sophie Eckrich, a former Whole Planet Foundation intern and founder of Teysha.

    SOURCE:Whole Foods Market Foundations

    DESCRIPTION:

    Ten years ago, I embarked for a life-changing journey as an intern for Whole Planet Foundation with their microfinance partner, Grameen Bank, in Panajachel, Guatemala. I was 19 years old, a rising Sophomore at the University of Texas at Austin, and I had no idea what to expect. I came away completely inspired by the spark of entrepreneurship created by microfinance and found in each woman I met in Guatemala, which has led to a very interesting and crazy past 10 years as I have started my own ethical fashion business, Teysha.

    Before going to Guatemala, I had spent time in rural Costa Rica and Ecuador, working for different NGOs on environmental projects. While traveling there, I met so many people who would tell me all the time that their greatest dream was to go to the USA to work. I looked around and saw the natural richness that they had: fertile land and family nearby. But, the opportunities to achieve more seemed few and far between. When I first heard of the concept of microfinance, it appeared to me the perfect solution for those who live in areas that do have resources nearby to be able to make something of those resources.

    My long-time friend and fellow intern, Chiara, and I worked side by side with a multicultural team of Guatemalan and Bangladeshi representatives from the Grameen Bank. The Guatemalan branch of the Grameen Bank was only about one year old at the time, and the team wasted no time in bringing their lending services to some of the most remote areas of Guatemala. By the first year, they had thousands of women microfinance clients who each started with a loan of around $110 USD.

    One of the most inspiring concepts of the Grameen model of microfinance is that of “borrowers’ groups,” who provide the social capital to guarantee the loan.  Similar to many countries in Latin America, official property rights in Guatemala can be convoluted or non-existent, which is one huge barrier to accessing a traditional bank loan. The bank has nothing to guarantee the loan, and thus the person is not eligible to receive funding.

    Microfinance programs innovated to solve this issue by realizing that while the women may not have traditional property rights,  they had incredibly strong social ties in their community. Thus, in order to receive a loan, a woman has to create or join a network of 6-8 other women who thereby guarantee each other’s capital. You better believe if your neighbor doesn’t show up to the loan meeting for whatever reason, and that affects your ability to get a loan, that you will be the first one knocking at her door to figure out what happened and to make sure she gets back on track. This system creates mutual accountability, community, as well as a group of women who are all working to create opportunities for themselves.

    That summer, we traveled throughout Guatemala visiting branches and interviewing women who had received microloans.  Some women used it to start a business, such as buying livestock, and others used it to expand their existing business, such as a small convenience store or a weaving business. The women most likely did not have any formal business training, but as Muhammad Yunus, the founder of Grameen Bank, wisely said, “poor people are the world’s greatest entrepreneurs. Every day they have to innovate in order to survive.”  I witnessed first hand the grit, resilience, and inspiration the microfinance clients possessed as they worked to create a better life for themselves and rise out of the situation in which they were born. The average microfinance client supported by WPF receives a loan of around $110 USD, depending on the country, and is then eligible for increasing amounts once she has repaid the loan.

    After my experience in Guatemala, I couldn’t get enough of the microfinance concept, so I went the following summer with another WPF client, Pro Mujer, in Peru. Pro Mujer operates on a similar model as the Grameen Bank, but adds in additional social service offerings such as child care, life insurance, and mobile health clinics to further support the needs of women entrepreneurs.

    At the University of Texas, I ended up studying Sociology, with a minor in Latin American Studies and a certificate in International Development. The experience in the classroom would not have been the same without seeing, before my eyes, the process of poverty alleviation and both the complications and opportunities in the international development field. Through this experience, I learned that oftentimes, poverty alleviation is a multi-generational process. It starts with one woman, one mother, one person, who is able to incrementally better her circumstances and pass better opportunities on to her children. Those children, in turn, rise incrementally more. Everyone along the way works hard to strive for more than what they had, which is not unlike the history of most developed countries.

    As I was nearing my graduation, the images and the stories of the microfinance entrepreneurs I had met in Guatemala and in Peru kept coming in to my mind. I knew that they had so many talents, so much potential, and were willing to work hard to achieve their dreams.  They did not want a hand-out, they wanted an opportunity to work. I also knew that I possessed a similar entrepreneurial drive, and we could band together to create opportunities for the region. The seeds of my business, Teysha, were planted during those experiences and the inspiration tied together my Mexican heritage, my experiences with the Whole Planet Foundation, and my studies at UT. The idea of using fashion as a medium for empowerment came naturally after seeing the vast quantities of incredible textiles and artisans in Guatemala, Peru, and beyond.

    Of course, a lot happens between the inspiration and the act of building the business, which I look forward to sharing more of in Part II of our series. Stay tuned to the @wholeplanet Instagram stories on July 24 as we share behind-the-scenes stories of our work in Guatemala, and keep an eye out for our soon-to-be launched artisan-made goods with the Whole Planet Foundation.

    Tweet me:.@Teysha_World founder Sophie Eckrich discusses how a life-changing trip to #Guatemala as a @WholePlanet Foundation intern sparked her entrepreneurial journey http://bit.ly/2NZyQrn #microfinance

    KEYWORDS: whole planet foundation, Teysha, entrepreneurship, Guatemala, Microloans, Sophie Eckrich

      


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    SOURCE:Booz Allen Hamilton

    DESCRIPTION:

    For the seventh year in a row, the National Veteran Small Business Coalition (NVSBC) honored Booz Allen with its Champion of Veteran Enterprise Award in recognition of its efforts to team with veteran-owned and service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses. In government fiscal year 2017, the firm subcontracted more than 13 percent of our work to service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses, and 20 percent to veteran-owned small businesses. These results far exceed both the government’s benchmark for subcontracting to service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses (three percent), and the NVSBC’s minimum requirement for this award (eight percent). 

    “This award once again demonstrates Booz Allen’s commitment to our military and veteran community,” Andrea Inserra, senior vice president at Booz Allen, and chair of the Veterans Agenda. “We were founded by a veteran, and 1/3 of our employees are military-connected.  It only makes sense that we would enthusiastically reach out to veteran-owned businesses to do our best work.”

    This award is only one example of the firm’s long-standing dedication to veterans. In addition to partnering with veteran-owned small businesses, the firm supports veterans by hiring them, providing best-in-class benefits, working with Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense (DoD) to improve veteran care, and partnering with non-profits to strengthen our military communities.

    For more information about Booz Allen’s impact on the military community, click here.

    Tweet me:Booz Allen is proud to receive the Champion of Veteran Enterprise Award from the National Veteran Small Business Coalition, read more here: http://bit.ly/2LpNeL8

    KEYWORDS: NYSE:BAH, Booz Allen, Veterans, NVSBC, Champions of Veteran Enterprise Award


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    SOURCE:Albertsons Companies

    DESCRIPTION:

    This summer, the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and Safeway stores are partnering to help save shoppers energy and money on their lighting with “Lighten Your Load” events.

    On select days at Safeway locations, bring old incandescent and/or compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs and receive up to three free LED light bulbs and a new, reusable shopping bag. These “Lighten Your Load” events are a way to save on electric bills and ensure that plastics and dangerous substances, like mercury, do not enter the waste stream.

    “We take our commitment to energy efficiency and reducing waste seriously,” said Darcie Renn, Director of Sustainability at Safeway. “By partnering with Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection, our customers have the opportunity to save energy and lower their utility bills while also reducing waste that goes to the landfill.”

    Continue reading on My Green Montgomery

     

    Tweet me:.@Safeway partners with @MyGreenMC to help shoppers save on electric bills and reduce plastic pollution in Montgomery County, MD http://bit.ly/2mt3w7P

    KEYWORDS: Safeway, SWY:SWY, Albertsons Companies, Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection


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    Harnessing the power of data throughout the project life cycle

    SOURCE:Tetra Tech

    DESCRIPTION:

    Across Tetra Tech’s markets, nearly all clients share the need for actionable information that can drive decision making. Big data began bursting onto the scene some 25 years ago, inundating our information-hungry clients with megabytes and gigabytes of facts and figures that soon became a flood of petabytes and zettabytes. Managers thirsty for relevant intelligence were drowning in oceans of data, wondering what was important, what was essential, and what was urgent information.

    In response to the need for timely and relevant information that can be analyzed, Tetra Tech employees from many facets of engineering, science, and technology began to apply methodologies to identify, analyze, and report mission-critical information. This article explores some of the ways we are Leading with Science® by using innovative data analytics techniques and digital dashboards—tools that integrate, display, and analyze key data—to help our clients gain insights that allow them to improve customer service and efficiency, make decisions in real time, and even use predictive analytics to steer toward the best future outcome.

    Using 3-D data visualization in aviation and beyond

    Tetra Tech’s recent acquisition, BridgeNet, A Tetra Tech Company, uses a combination of 3-dimensional (3-D) visualization and user-friendly dashboards to help technical and nontechnical audiences make decisions regarding airport operations. BridgeNet developed Volans, an innovative, proprietary 3-D airspace visualization software tool to analyze and display airspace data and procedures that can analyze environmental and operational efficiency to determine benefits and risks associated with new flight procedure development.

    BridgeNet is working closely with one of the country’s busiest airports to assess its operations, documenting number and types of aircraft, departures and arrival times, and overall volume of aircraft using the airport. Tetra Tech’s data analytics experts create dashboards using MS Power BI, which integrates data seamlessly and displays the information in real time.

    Clients for this easy-to-use, responsive, and functionally rich data visualization tool include the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration; Air Navigation Service Providers in Canada, Australia, and France; and major U.S. and international airports.

    The volume of data generated in our industry grows every day. Our challenge is to sift through vast data sets, identify critical information needed to make meaningful decisions, and present that information in a simplified, usable format. Throughout its markets—from disaster recovery to water, environment, energy, aviation, and beyond—Tetra Tech helps clients harness the power of their data to boost success throughout project life cycles.

    Tweet me: Driving Decisions with Data Dashboards: Using 3-D data visualization in aviation and beyond http://bit.ly/2IQBagm #LeadingWithScience #BigData

    KEYWORDS: Tetra Tech, NASDAQ:TTEK


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    SOURCE:Xylem Inc.

    DESCRIPTION:

    The team from Xylem Watermark in Morton Grove, IL has been hard at work in their local community. Twenty-five Watermark volunteers recently helped clean up a section of Lincoln Creek, which carries water away from Downtown Milwaukee. While doing so, they helped monitor water quality and shared their data as part of the EarthEcho Water Challenge. In addition to 30 garbage bags of trash, the team also removed an automobile bumper and two shopping carts, highlighting the importance of keeping our waterways clean.

    About Xylem Watermark

    Xylem Watermark, Xylem’s corporate citizenship program, provides and protects safe water resources for many of the world’s most vulnerable communities and educates individuals around the globe about water issues. This social commitment reflects Xylem’s ethos of valuing the “triple bottom-line:” financial, environmental and social. The company firmly believes in the notion of doing well by doing good, and dedicates resources to initiatives that demonstrate its commitment.

    Xylem Watermark was founded in 2008 and, with its six nonprofit partners, has provided clean water and sanitation solutions to over three million people in 38 countries. Xylem launched its first Global Month of Service in October 2016 to provide a focused time to inspire employees to get involved and bring the mission of Xylem Watermark to their communities. In 2017, Xylem Watermark launched the Make Your Mark 30 Day Challenge to engage employees in solving global and local water issues in ways about which they are passionate.

    To learn more about Xylem Watermark, please visit http://www.xylemwatermark.com.

    Tweet me:In addition to removing 30 bags of trash, an automobile bumper, and two shopping carts from Lincoln Creek, @XylemWatermark volunteers monitored water quality and shared their data as part of the @EarthEcho Water Challenge: http://bit.ly/2NCZfLv #MakeYourMark #LetsSolveWater

    Contact Info:

    xylemwatermark@xyleminc.com

    KEYWORDS: NYSE:XYL, VOLUNTEERISM & COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT, Xylem, Make Your Mark, People

          


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    SOURCE:Comcast Corporation

    DESCRIPTION:

    Even before Hurricane Maria touched down in Puerto Rico in September 2017, many feared the damage would be enormous. When the storm reached landfall, those fears were confirmed, and it was obvious that people’s lives on the island would be changed forever.

    Seeing the devastation firsthand, our NBC News teams knew that covering the story piecemeal from afar wasn’t going to be enough — the story was too big and too important. As we do whenever major news stories hit, we embedded ourselves on the ground to help audiences understand what was happening on an island literally in the dark.

    Lester Holt, Anchor of NBC Nightly News, was the first major news anchor to report live from Puerto Rico, calling it “the equivalent of a war zone.” Within days, we had opened a full-time news bureau in the capital, San Juan, to house our correspondents and crews. We also collaborated with our Spanish-language network, Telemundo, which has roots in San Juan and sent its own team of correspondents to cover the crisis.

    Reporting from the scene helped us learn how Puerto Ricans were coping moment to moment, identify experts who could put the scale of the tragedy into perspective, and earn the trust of residents and local government officials.

    This personal, up-close reporting is critical for stories like Hurricane Maria because it brings to life the human impact of a tragedy in a way that studio reporting cannot. It’s why journalists from NBC, Telemundo, and The Weather Channel were among the first on scene during many of the most significant disasters of 2017.  Together, they brought stories of devastation and hope to the world, inspiring viewers to persevere and aid in recovery efforts — during not only Maria but also Hurricane Irma, Hurricane Harvey, and the California wildfires.

    “We sometimes speak about natural disasters in numbers,” says Holt, an anchor who’s known for reporting on location whenever possible. “But it makes us better reporters to talk directly with the people affected. Being on the ground, we can touch it, we can feel it, and we can infuse our reporting with personal experience. Coupled with our technology, we can help our audience understand what’s really happening.”

    NBC News correspondents frequently forgo the news desk for front lines and front yards, where they act as eyes and ears for viewers. In 2017, our correspondents reported live from calamities such as Hurricane Harvey in Houston, the California wildfires, and the Mexico City earthquake. Some stories revealed themselves in heartbreaking ways.

    “I was talking to a firefighter during the California wildfires,” Holt says. “As he was out saving homes, he learned over the radio that his own home was destroyed. He was still doing his job without knowing the whereabouts of his family.  Immediately, this was no longer a story about ‘X hundred people homeless,’ but a story of a hero, a family, and a brotherhood of co-workers.”

    We couldn’t have told the story of Hurricane Maria without standing in the wreckage of homes or traveling heavily damaged highways to reach communities cut off from power, food, and water.

    “The important thing is to remind people why they should care,” Holt says of the value of reporting on the ground. “Ideally, they’ll ask themselves, ‘How would I handle that? What would my family be doing?’ We try to give that perspective to viewers.”

    Click here to read the full report

    Tweet me:.@NBCNightlyNews and @LesterHolt were among the first on scene during many of the most significant disasters of 2017. Find out how their efforts made an impact in @ComcastNBCUCI's 2018 #CSR report http://bit.ly/2NWz2aE

    KEYWORDS: NASDAQ:CMCSA, comcast, Comcast NBCUniversal, Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico, Lester Holt, NBC Nightly News


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    Northern Trust Releases 2017 CSR Report: Achieve Greater

    SOURCE:Northern Trust

    DESCRIPTION:

    Northern Trust values corporate social responsibility (CSR) as an essential element of our mission and culture. Our stakeholders expect us to be responsible stewards of the company’s resources, balancing appropriate levels of prudence and risk to create value. We take that responsibility seriously, as demonstrated through our commitment to Achieve Greater through our CSR strategy.

    We are pleased to present our eighth CSR report prepared using the Global Reporting Initiatve (GRI) standards. The Northern Trust 2017 CSR Report emphasizes our key priorities related to governance, citizenship and operations; employees; shared value; and sustainable products and services. Our impact is driven by our strategic focus on diversity and inclusion, community engagement and environmental sustainability. As the report details, we achieved several notable milestones in 2017, including introducing electric cars to our India office, contributing over $19 million USD globally to philanthropic organizations and signing the UK’s Women in Finance Charter. Our environmental, social and governance (ESG) assets under management grew 37 percent to $86 billion. Northern Trust was named one of the “World’s Most Admired Companies” by Fortune Magazine for the 11th consecutive year and earned an “A-” rating from the CDP for greenhouse gas emissions disclosures and climate action.

    At the end of 2017, Frederick H. Waddell retired from his role as Chief Executive Officer and remains Chairman of the Board. We commend him for the guidance he provided towards the many CSR milestones Northern Trust reached during his tenure, and for his role in helping Northern Trust continue its legacy of outstanding service, expertise and integrity. These principles guide how we do business and serve shareholders, clients, communities and each other, laying a foundation for future generations to Achieve Greater. 

    We look forward to engaging with you as you read our report, and in the years to come.

    -Connie L. Lindsey, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility and Global Diversity & Inclusion and Michael G. O’Grady, Executive Vice President President and Chief Executive Officer

    Read the entire 2017 CSR Report here

    Tweet me:.@NTCSR releases 2017 #CSR Report, emphasizes key priorities related to #governance, #citizenship and operations; employees; shared value; and sustainable products and services http://bit.ly/2m7N10J #sustainability

    KEYWORDS: 2017 csr report, Northern Trust, csr commitments, greenhouse gas emissions disclosures and climate action, GRI Standards

     


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    SOURCE:Walmart

    SUMMARY:

    It might just be that I am a mom of three children (ages 8, 4 and 2) who is always looking for fun yet affordable things to do, but I am noticing more and more hands-on learning opportunities such as “maker spaces” popping up in schools and institutions throughout the country.

    DESCRIPTION:

    By Erin Hogue

    Senior Grant Manager – Walmart Foundation

    Northwest Arkansas is no different. It's exciting to see so many STEAM – an acronym for science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics – concepts embodied in current popular culture, inspiring confidence in young women in particular.

    Learning becomes deeper and longer lasting when it involves creativity, discovery and community. That’s why I’m so excited to help support Walmart and the Walmart Foundation in their giving efforts. Through my job as a senior grant manager for the Walmart Foundation, I get to be part of helping organizations like the Scott Family Amazeum, who are working to break down the intimidation factors of STEAM in hopes of inspiring the next generation of engineers, coders, scientists and beyond.

    Just this last month, at the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship, Proctor & Gamble and Walmart joined the Amazeum and other local organizations to host the first Always Live #LikeAGirl STEAM Day for 100 young girls from the region, who were encouraged to explore STEAM careers.

    But let me share a little bit more about the impact STEAM education is having on my own daughter, Kenzy. This past spring, like many children in Northwest Arkansas, she and her 2nd grade class attended an Amazeum Unfield Trip, which is a program supported by a $1 million grant over three years from the Walmart Foundation to fund admission for students in Benton and Washington counties.

    This wasn’t your traditional school museum visit, but rather a hands-on learning experience for both the students and teachers, inspiring curiosity and discovery at every turn. Kenzy loved exploring the world of water at the Nature Valley Water Amazements, but being able to create something uniquely her own in the 3M Tinkering Hub renewed her interest in her school’s afterschool coding club. Who knows? It might have even ignited a lifelong interest in a STEAM career.

    Innovation is all around us and sometimes it takes us slowing down to see it or be inspired by it. Watching my kids discover has encouraged me to incorporate more STEAM into my own lifelong learning. STEAM education develops life skills like logical reasoning, collaboration, creativity and communication while building character traits like confidence, self-esteem, imagination, persistence and motivation. These are the very life skills and character traits I am seeing my daughter develop through her interactions with STEAM education.

    Without creativity, the world would be a lot less interesting, and without the curiosity to discover, we wouldn’t push ourselves a little more or strive for the impossible. In a world being transformed by innovation, I’m grateful for my kids who are a constant reminder for me to not be afraid to embrace my own creativity, be a little more willing to go down the journey of discovery but most importantly to foster community with those around me.

    Tweet me:The @Walmart Foundation helps organizations work to break down the intimidation factors of #STEAM and inspire the next generation of #engineers, #coders, #scientists and beyond. http://bit.ly/2LuCrMk @WalmartGiving

    KEYWORDS: Walmart, The Walmart Foundation

      


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    SOURCE:Cone Communications

    DESCRIPTION:

    Last week, coffee drinkers learned about Starbucks’ latest sustainability initiative – a plan to phase out single-use straws by 2020. But Starbucks isn’t the only fast-food icon exploring ways to lessen its environmental impact. Together, McDonald’s and Starbucks distribute a combined 4 percent of the world’s 600 billion single-use cups annually. And, while the two fast food giants have been making strides toward sustainability separately for years, McDonald’s announced that it will be joining forces with the coffee icon to tackle an issue that outweighs the brands’ rivalry.

    Earlier this year, Starbucks and investment firm Closed Loop Partners launched The NextGen Cup Challenge, inviting designers, entrepreneurs and even other competitors to join in creating a solution for sustainable packaging – with a preliminary focus on cups. This week, McDonald’s joined the initiative and matched Starbucks’ initial $5 million contribution. Participants of the challenge will receive up to $1 million in funding and guidance from McDonald’s and Starbucks staff to optimize the design for real-world application. Promising designs will enter a six-month accelerator program to ensure the scalability of the idea. To help inform the designers and guarantee the new cups will address the needs of all stakeholders, NextGen has convened an advisory group consisting of leaders from academia, government, recycling, design and environmental NGOs including World Wildlife Fund (WWF). 

    To continue reading, please click here.

    Tweet me:Starbucks and McDonald’s Unite to Push Industry Toward More Sustainable Packaging http://bit.ly/2LE0w3k

    KEYWORDS: Starbucks cups, McDonald's cups, sustainability, Cone Communications, Starbucks, McDonald's


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