Recognizing Excellence in Corporate Philanthropy: 2015 Campaign Awards

At United Way for Greater Austin, we run more than 200 employee campaigns in nearly 700 locations in the Austin area. Employee campaigns provide an opportunity for businesses to empower employees to be philanthropists by donating a portion of each paycheck back to the community.

Last night, we celebrated and recognized companies who excelled in building philanthropy in our community at our 2015 Employee Campaign Awards.

Award winners:

Best Practices: Superior Health and Texas Gas
This award recognizes the company that implements UWATX’s best campaign practices, which include Senior Officer involvement, access to employees and use of UWATX campaign materials among several others. This year we had two winners for this award. Superior Health kept their campaign at one week to give a sense of urgency; they also planned a week of fun, educational experiences for their employees encouraging them to give. Texas Gas established multiple opportunities for UWATX staff to come and speak to their employees about our work, as well as ran a closed campaign where employee donations were matched 1:1 by their foundation.

Community Investment Award: H-E-B
The Community Investment Award represents a company or companies who exemplify what it really means to wrap arms around a community to make a significant impact. Anyone who shops at H-E-B realizes it’s not your normal grocery store. This year, H-E-B decided to increase corporate giving to match the generosity of their employees and UWATX experienced a 150% increase in corporate giving. They make philanthropy a part of their culture and host the largest community Thanksgiving meal in Central Texas, Feast of Sharing.

SECC Excellence in Philanthropy: Employees Retirement System of Texas
The State Employee Charitable Campaign (SECC) brings philanthropy to the employees of our state agencies. The SECC Excellence in Philanthropy award recognizes a state agency that has made outstanding achievements in their giving campaigns. Employees Retirement System of Texas went above and beyond to engage their coworkers by using Leadership and Campaign Coordinators.

Women’s Leadership Council Champion: Amy Green-Hinojosa
The Women’s Leadership Council (WLC) has been an integral part of UWATX’s Success By 6 program. This award recognizes companies that actively participate and support WLC activities. Amy Green-Hinojosa is a devoted WLC member and attends events regularly. She advocates for the group and recruits members through her job, and she even serves as a Employee Campaign Leader. It is community leaders like Amy that allow our organization to thrive!

Century Investors Champion: Deloitte
Century Investors are UWATX’s major donor group investing in the future of Austin and our organization. Deloitte generously sponsored the Spring Century Investors event and their managing partner and UWATX Board Member, Kathleen Farlow, served as chair for the Century Investors for the 2015 campaign year. Deloitte also has the most Tocqueville level donors at their company.

Young Leaders Society Champion: Ward Hoffman
This award recognizes one of the Young Leader Society’s (YLS) members for their dedication to the affinity group. YLS is a committed to UWATX’s Middle School Matters program, which provides services to at-risk middle school students so they stay on the path to graduation. Ward Hoffman attends nearly every single YLS project and served as the Campus Captain for projects at Webb Middle School. He brings unique ideas to the group and has shown dedication throughout his time involved.

Excellence in Leadership Giving: Enterprise
This award is reserved for companies with the most Leadership Giving employees (those who give $1,000+ to UWATX). Enterprise has built a leadership culture that continues to grow – they currently have a total of 94 Leadership Givers. This is their third year in a row to win this award.

Excellence in Volunteerism: Wells Fargo
The Excellence in Volunteerism award goes to companies with outstanding volunteer participation. Since they have begun their volunteer work, employees at Wells Fargo have completed more than 11,500 hours…that’s almost 480 straight days of service! Some volunteer activities they have participated in include teaching financial education lessons to elementary school students, prepping classrooms and educational materials for middle school students and teachers, and more!

Insurance Industry – Top Philanthropic Partner: Colombia Insurance Group
The Insurance Industry Challenge (IIC) started in 2013 to encourage insurance companies to increase their campaign participation, provide volunteer opportunities throughout the year and form lasting relationships with UWATX. The winner, Colombia Insurance Group, had 100% employee participation in their campaign!

Employee Campaign Leader of the Year: Mary Ann Provance, Comerica Bank
The Employee Campaign Leader is vital to success of each campaign – they are the liaison between UWATX and our companies and are key to inspiring their coworkers to give. Mary Ann works for Comerica Bank which had 100% employee participation. Mary Ann and her colleagues hosted a silent auction, which raised several thousands of dollars for UWATX.

Largest Year-to-Year Corporate Giving Increase: 3M
This next award goes to an organization that finished the year as the top giving employee campaign in Austin, due to a large corporate gift. 3M employee dollars matched 2:1 on the first day of the campaign, were matched 1:1 for a full month, and after that dollars were matched $.50 cents on the dollar for any other gift. 3M’s total gift this year was $648,000!

Largest Year-to-Year Employee Giving Increase & Greatest Participation Increase: Kerbey Lane Café
Kerbey Lane Cafe was awarded with two awards, Largest Year-to-Year Employee Giving Increase and Greatest Participation Increase! In 2015, they opened the doors to all of their restaurant locations and proved that anyone can be a philanthropist no matter how much they give. Last year, the number of employees who donated dramatically increased with an average gift of $4 per paycheck. This year, during their 36th anniversary they generously donated all their profits to UWATX.

Excellence in Corporate Philanthropy: Samsung Austin Semiconductor, LLC
This award is given to UWATX’s top three campaigns, companies who make important investments with a commitment to making Austin Greater and where employees give their time, talent and treasure. Samsung Austin Semiconductor, LLC implemented UWATX’s best practices in a way that represents excellence in all categories. They represent the heart of philanthropy in Greater Austin and we are so honored to work with them everyday to lift up the working poor and ensure that every one of our community members has what they need to thrive.

Thank you to all of the employees, leaders and advocates who gave back to our community through their campaign – check out more photos from the evening.