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Tetra Tech Launches Company-wide Healthy Life Challenge

Latest news from CSR Wire - Tue, 09/01/2020 - 16:21


Tetra Tech, Inc. (NASDAQ: TTEK), a leading provider of high-end consulting and engineering services, launched its Healthy Life Challenge today to promote healthy lifestyles for employees across its global operations. Tetra Tech’s commitment to supporting the wellness of its employees, especially through these unprecedented times, is a core value for the Company. During this 30-day challenge, 130 teams across 6 continents will work to collectively achieve their personal fitness and wellness goals.

The Healthy Life Challenge is part of Tetra Tech’s social sustainability efforts to support the quality of life in the communities where our employees live and work. In addition to helping our employees promote healthy lifestyles, Tetra Tech is giving back to our communities through financial contributions to regional and global charities that will be selected by the winning teams. The charities reflect Tetra Tech’s global operations and support communities by providing services in the areas of environment and water, social awareness, diversity and inclusion, health, and humanitarian aid.   

Tetra Tech’s software engineers developed a custom, web-based application for the challenge that enables teams to set goals through their personalized dashboard, track progress, and upload photos. A Leaderboard adds to the friendly competition by showing the team rankings in real-time. The app was developed to work seamlessly on desktop computers or mobile devices to maximize participation and is securely accessible to our employees.

“Our 20,000 employees around the world are virtually connected and collaborating seamlessly throughout our operations,” said Tetra Tech President, Leslie Shoemaker. “Our Wellness Challenge creates another forum for personal development, leverages technology to enhance engagement, and supports charities that promote clean water, environment, and sustainability worldwide.  

About Tetra Tech 

Tetra Tech is a leading provider of high-end consulting and engineering services for projects worldwide. With 20,000 associates working together, Tetra Tech provides clear solutions to complex problems in water, environment, infrastructure, resource management, energy, and international development. We are Leading with Science® to provide sustainable and resilient solutions for our clients. For more information about Tetra Tech, please visit tetratech.com, follow us on Twitter (@TetraTech), or like us on Facebook.

Jim Wu, Investor Relations
Charlie MacPherson, Media & Public Relations
(626) 470-2844

Any statements made in this release that are not based on historical fact are forward-looking statements. Any forward-looking statements made in this release represent management’s best judgment as to what may occur in the future. However, Tetra Tech’s actual outcome and results are not guaranteed and are subject to certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions ("Future Factors"), and may differ materially from what is expressed. For a description of Future Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from such forward-looking statements, see the discussion under the section "Risk Factors" included in the Company’s Form 10-K and Form 10-Q filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Unprecedented Public-Private Collaboration Brings Innovative Homeless Shelter To Downtown Pittsburgh

Latest news from CSR Wire - Tue, 09/01/2020 - 13:21

Through an unprecedented public-private collaboration, a coalition of corporate, civic and community leaders today unveiled plans for an innovative 45,000-square-foot facility near downtown Pittsburgh that provides shelter and comprehensive wrap-around services for homeless adults.

The five-story facility, which will be located on Second Avenue, adjacent to the Liberty Bridge, is the first-of-its-kind in Allegheny County operating as a year-round, low-barrier shelter for adults and their pets. Its wrap-around services will aim to address the complex issues confronting people experiencing homelessness, including addiction, unemployment and physical and behavioral health.   

Clients will have access to resources that support self-sufficiency and empower them on their path to a safe and secure quality of life.

Today’s announcement is the culmination of more than nine months of research and unprecedented collaboration among the following partners:

  • Action Housing

  • Allegheny Conference

  • Allegheny County

  • Allegheny Health Network

  • City of Pittsburgh Office of Mayor William Peduto

  • DLA+ Architects

  • Highmark Health

  • Hillman Family Foundation

  • Pittsburgh Mercy and Operation Safety Net

  • PJ Dick

  • PNC

  • UPMC

“This region always is at its best when we work together, and this project really epitomizes that idea,” said County Executive Rich Fitzgerald. “This public-private partnership identified a need and has worked cohesively and collaboratively to put the pieces together to find a way to address this challenge. We are grateful to all of the partners who have stepped up to the plate to advance this project and look forward to even more community partners becoming part of this initiative.”

"As a city and a region, we are coming together to focus on eliminating harm and risk to people who become homeless by restoring autonomy — to do so, we must ensure that people do not have to sleep in unsafe situations or be separated from loved ones, prioritize individual agency and dignity, and facilitate rapid connections to healthcare and other services. We cannot accept that the safest place for a person to sleep is under a bridge or that people without homes are somehow less deserving," Mayor William Peduto said. "I am grateful for our many partners and providers, and particularly our direct service workers, for tirelessly working to meet these needs."

This $21 million project, the first in which both the public and private sectors were hands-on in the development and design, has been made possible by contributions of $5 million each from both Highmark and the PNC Foundation, plus $5 million of in-kind services from UPMC, ongoing fundraising efforts from local foundations, and countless hours of consultation and expertise from the stakeholder group at large. Key to the success of the project will be the ongoing support services at the shelter run by Allegheny County. Land for the facility was donated by the City of Pittsburgh and the Urban Redevelopment Authority.

“Public-private partnerships are at the core of some of the most successful initiatives in our community and represent Highmark’s commitment to creating and growing healthier and more vital communities in the process. That’s why Highmark has committed $5 million to this project and AHN is proud to be a part of the Steering Committee,” said Dan Onorato, executive vice president and chief Corporate Affairs Officer at Highmark Health. “We are a stronger community when we all work collaboratively to address issues and solve problems that impact our region.”

“It is particularly challenging to manage the complexities of mental health, poverty, physical health, and addiction, especially when the needs of our homeless neighbors can be so profound. We will serve all with utmost dignity and respect,” said Dr. Steven Shapiro, Chief Medical and Scientific Officer, UPMC. “At UPMC, we hold tight to our mission of making care accessible, and today we celebrate the mission of service that UPMC shares with all partners.”

The deliberate approach to planning and design has been informed by best practices and lessons learned from comparable facilities across the country, as well as experts who are addressing homelessness daily and understand specific local circumstances. These experts include individuals representing local health care, government, public safety, human services, NGO and professional services (design and construction) organizations. The vision for delivery of services centers on dignity, personal control, security and privacy, harm reduction, trauma-informed care and flexibility.

“As a Main Street Bank, PNC takes a collaborative, market-specific approach to everything we do,” said Lou Cestello, head of regional markets and regional president of Pittsburgh for PNC. “While we are pleased to contribute funding from the PNC Foundation, as well as technical expertise on building and development for this project, we know the best results can’t be achieved without collaboration among local organizations with roots in the community and the infrastructure in place to make the biggest impact possible. We are eager to realize the results of this public-private collaboration. Our goal is to drive meaningful change by providing much-needed services to individuals experiencing homelessness in our own backyard.”

“Having a home is a basic need for everyone,” said Linda Metropulos, special consultant for Action Housing. “We might look the other way when we see someone who is experiencing homelessness, sitting on the sidewalk, sleeping in an alleyway, or waiting for a cold weather shelter to open. But when you stop to think about where this person can go at the end of the day when they are exhausted or need a shower or where their next meal will come from, you realize just how hard his or her life really is. While short-term help can be found, long-term solutions will require a community-sized response. This collaborative effort is breath-taking in its scope and an incredible show of compassion and generosity that is needed to truly serve those members of the Pittsburgh community who are most in need. It is an important addition to an existing safety net that is already caring for some of our most at-risk citizens.”

Functions and services include the following key components:

  • Client services, including care for shelter, drop-in and single-room occupancy populations. The case management team will assess the needs and navigate to appropriate resources and supportive services, including a small clinic for physical and behavioral health services as well as alcohol and other drug treatment programs;

  • Drop-in Center with personal hygiene facilities, laundry, snacks and client services for individuals experiencing homelessness, but who are not necessarily staying at the facility;

  • 95 beds with room for 42 overflow beds in group sleeping rooms with dedicated personal hygiene facilities, living room and locker storage;

  • Mail services, important to those without a permanent address;

  • A singular area to include lounges, a library and computer room, kitchen, dining and outdoor plaza space and seating;

  • 42 single-room occupancy units to facilitate transition to independent housing; and

  • Adequate quiet room and support space, workstations and kitchenette for the staff serving this facility.

Full design and construction activities are expected to proceed imminently.

Progress will be tracked and measured toward outcomes that reduce chronic homelessness in Pittsburgh.


Olivia Lammel +1 (412) 952-4880 olivia.lammel@pnc.com

Domtar Sustainability for 2020 and Beyond

Latest news from CSR Wire - Tue, 09/01/2020 - 11:21

Originally published by Domtar

In both the Pulp & Paper and Personal Care divisions, we have made progress on the sustainability goals outlined in 2019. Domtar sustainability efforts targeted three focus areas: responsibility across our supply chain, including sustainable forestry principles to ensure the health of forestlands; efficiency in our manufacturing to minimize the negative environmental effects of our operations; and engagement with a variety of stakeholders.

Domtar Sustainability Update

We achieved two of our six major goals: We reduced our total direct greenhouse gas emissions and indirect emissions from purchased energy by 19 percent at our pulp and paper mills, compared to our goal of a 15 percent reduction from 2010 levels. We also completed development of a water usage model for our mills to measure and more strategically manage the full cost of using water.

In addition, we have nearly achieved two other Domtar sustainability goals that center on certified fiber procurement and employee engagement (as measured by establishing EarthChoice® Ambassador teams at each of our facilities).

Finally, we are actively working toward achieving our final two Domtar sustainability goals — targeting a 0.50 recordable safety incident rate and ensuring a 40 percent reduction in waste to landfill from pulp and paper mills.

“We have continued our progress in several areas in the past year,” says Paige Goff, vice president of sustainability. “In a few areas, we have encountered new challenges related to downtime at our mills or the business climate of our suppliers or customers. Despite these hurdles, our commitment is strong, and our performance in most areas is moving in the right direction.”

Domtar sustainability highlights from our Pulp & Paper division include the following:

  • We met 34 percent of our fiber needs with certified wood in 2019, including 18 percent from Forest Stewardship Council®-certified sources.

  • We beneficially reused 67 percent of our pulp and paper manufacturing byproducts, compared to an industry average of 46 percent.

  • We self-generated 67 percent of the electricity used in our pulp and paper mills, compared with an industry average of 55 percent.

  • We used 10 percent less water at our mills (from 2015 baseline).

Domtar sustainability highlights in Personal Care include the following:

  • We beneficially reused or recycled 83 percent of our manufacturing byproducts.

  • We reduced by 30 percent our direct greenhouse gas and indirect emissions from purchased energy since 2015.

In addition to our sustainability progress, we’re proud of our ongoing investments in our communities, totaling $2.9 million and more than 13,650 hours of volunteer work by our employees.

Since 2012, we have donated 413,000 books to under-resourced teachers and underprivileged students through our collaboration with First Book, and since 2016, we have given more than 4.1 million diapers to families in need through our Comfort and Care program.

Watch the brief video above to learn more about our sustainability efforts and accomplishments.

We learn more every day and every step of the way in our Domtar sustainability journey. Read more about our commitment to sustainability:

Moody's Congratulates the Participants in Girls Who Code Who Completed Their Summer Immersion Program

Latest news from CSR Wire - Tue, 09/01/2020 - 10:20

Congrats again to the 40 participants from Girls Who Code who completed our 2020 Summer Immersion Program. Thank you to our volunteers, staff and teachers for your support. Together we’re helping to close the gender gap in tech. We’ll leave you with these words of encouragement from our CIO, Mona Breed, and board member, Kathy Hill.

Time to Vote Movement Gains Unprecedented Momentum Ahead of 2020 U.S. Election

Latest news from CSR Wire - Tue, 09/01/2020 - 10:20

More than 700 companies have now joined Time to Vote, a business-led, nonpartisan coalition that aims to increase voter participation in the U.S. elections. Voter turnout in the U.S. is one of the lowest in the developed world and one of the most common reasons people give for not voting is that they are too busy with the demands of life and work. The coalition, which represents more than six million workers in the U.S.*, is addressing this challenge by giving employees the time and the tools they need to exercise their right to vote in the November general election.

The 2020 elections are anticipated to face many unique challenges. With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the stakes for removing barriers to voting are higher than ever. Recent primaries have suffered from a lack of poll workers and malfunctioning voting machines, resulting in even longer wait times. Additionally, with the elections approaching in the midst of a global movement for racial equality, it has brought to the forefront how communities of color are disproportionately affected by systemic voter suppression and the role CEOs can play in helping to protect our democracy for all people.

"The need has never been greater for businesses to provide their employees dedicated time off to vote," said Dan Schulman, president and CEO of PayPal, one of the three companies that founded Time to Vote in 2018. "No American should have to choose between earning a paycheck and voting. Business leaders around the country must step up and do what's needed to ensure all of their employees will have the opportunity to have their voices heard this November."

So far this year, more than 700 companies – including workers in all 50 states and spanning a variety of industries – have joined Time to Vote. Over 200 companies have joined in the last two months alone, demonstrating the increased momentum of the movement as the election draws near. Major companies that have recently joined include:

Bank of America

Ben and Jerry's

Cox Enterprises

Dell Technologies

Discovery Inc.

Expedia Group



LEGO Systems, Inc.




Steve Madden

Stitch Fix


Sweaty Betty


Toyota Research Institute


Tyson Foods


Qualcomm Incorporated



"Since its inception, Time to Vote has been a powerful advocate for voter access and participation," said Jennifer Weiss-Wolf, vice president and Women & Democracy Fellow at the Brennan Center for Justice, a leading nonpartisan institute on democracy and justice in the U.S. "When so many influential business leaders join forces – and take a stand on the vital issues of civic engagement – it sends a compelling message. The Time to Vote coalition's commitment to give employees time off to vote, especially now when the challenges are so dire, can address one of the biggest barriers to voter participation."

Many Time to Vote companies have announced a variety of measures to ensure their employees are able to fully participate in the general election, such as making Election Day a paid company holiday, offering paid time off on Election Day and actively promoting initiatives such as early voting and vote-by-mail, particularly in light of the challenges presented by voting amid a global pandemic. Some member companies that have announced such commitments include:




The Coca-Cola Company


Decisely Insurance Services

DXL Big + Tall

Hewlett Packard Enterprise

Home Point Financial



Legacy Vacation Resorts


Levi Strauss & Co.


Master Clinician Network

Modern Restaurant Concepts


New Balance

The North Face

Outcome Health




PNC Financial Services Group

Ralph Lauren



Road Warrior Creative


Sally Beauty Holdings


Tony's Chocolonely


UM Worldwide

Warby Parker

Work & Co.

World Surf League

Time to Vote is asking more companies to join the movement and commit to giving its employees the time and resources they need to vote. The goal is to have more than 1,000 companies – from a diverse set of industries representing every state – join the movement by November 3.

Businesses interested in joining Time to Vote can visit maketimetovote.org.
To see the list of Time to Vote companies, click here.

About Time to Vote

Time to Vote is a nonpartisan, business-led initiative to help ensure employees across America don't have to choose between voting and earning a paycheck. Participation includes giving employees access to and information about early voting or vote-by-mail options, offering paid time off on Election Day or making it a day without meetings. Time to Vote was founded by Levi Strauss & Co., Patagonia and PayPal ahead of the 2018 midterm elections, when 411 companies representing all 50 states and a variety of industries joined. For more information, visit maketimetovote.org.

*Due to age, citizenship status and other factors, not all workers are guaranteed to be eligible U.S. voters.

Press Contacts:
Corley Kenna, Patagonia: corley.kenna@patagonia.com
Kelly Mason, Levi Strauss & Co.: newsmediarequests@levi.com
Tiffany Peng, PayPal: tipeng@paypal.com
Alexandra Ringe, Brennan Center for Justice: ringea@brennan.law.nyu.edu 

IPride Employee Networking Circle (ENC) Collaborates With OUTMemphis

Latest news from CSR Wire - Tue, 09/01/2020 - 09:20

International Paper created Employee Networking Circles (ENCs) as voluntary, company sponsored employee groups that focus on creating an engaged, inclusive, collaborative and diverse workplace. ENCs are the result of extensive collaboration across the organization to identify the best way for our employees to participate in creating an inclusive environment; support each other; have a connection with other employees in their business, function staff group or facility; and support company business goals and objectives. ENCs at International Paper  include: Diversity and Inclusion councils, mentoring boards, gender-based groups, cultural or ethnic based groups or experienced based groups.

The IPride ENC fosters a supportive community and provides networking opportunities for the company’s LGBTQ+ employees and allies. IPride recently collaborated with OUTMemphis, a non-profit with the goal of empowering, connecting, educating and advocating for the LGBTQ+ community of the Mid-South, and donated 500 boxes that the organization will use for COVID-19 relief and response efforts. These include Grocery Delivery Kits, Food and Hygiene Kits, as well as  food and supplies for the organization’s new OUTLast Emergency Assistance Program.

At International Paper, our goal is to create diverse and inclusive teams that value individuality and collaboration. A diverse and inclusive culture will help us achieve our vision of being among the most successful, sustainable and responsible companies in the world.

About International Paper

International Paper (NYSE: IP) is a leading global producer of renewable fiber-based packaging, pulp and paper products with manufacturing operations in North America, Latin America, Europe, North Africa and Russia. We produce corrugated packaging products that protect and promote goods and enable world-wide commerce; pulp for diapers, tissue, and other personal hygiene products that promote health and wellness; and papers that facilitate education and communication. We are headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., employ more than 50,000 colleagues and serve more than 25,000 customers in 150 countries. Net sales for 2019 were $22 billion. For more information about International Paper, our products and global citizenship efforts, please visit internationalpaper.com. See how we’re building a better future for people, the planet and our company at www.internationalpaper.com/Vision-2030.

Walmart, Sam's Club and the Walmart Foundation Announce Relief and Recovery Efforts To Help Those Affected by Hurricane Laura

Latest news from CSR Wire - Tue, 09/01/2020 - 08:20

With the catastrophic storm, flooding and power outages affecting southwest Louisiana and southeast Texas, Walmart, Sam’s Club and the Walmart Foundation are committing up to $2.5 million in cash and in-kind product donations to organizations leading response and recovery efforts.

The funds and product donations will support relief efforts in the area through four non-profits already active in the response, including the Community Foundation of Southwest Louisiana, SBP USA (Saint Bernard Project), American Red Cross and the Salvation Army. In addition to aid for these organizations, the company is donating more than 600,000 bottles of water to the Louisiana Governor’s Office on Homeland Security and local nonprofits to support impacted communities.

“Hurricane Laura has significantly impacted our associates, customers and the communities we call home, leaving many without power and basic services that may not return for weeks,” said Dan Bartlett, executive vice president of corporate affairs for Walmart Inc. “Our hearts go out to those affected, and we gladly leverage our resources to assist where needed.”

In addition, Walmart and Sam’s Club are also supporting evacuees in Texas, providing phone charging stations in the Lake Charles area and hosting food relief organizations in a store parking lot in Louisiana. As people were evacuated from southeast Texas late last week, many were housed in San Antonio where Walmart supplied a shelter with water, snacks and towels.  For those without power in southwest Louisiana, Sam’s Club has set up charging stations at three area clubs so that people may charge their mobile phones. To help those that need hot meals, food relief organizations are handing out food and meal kits to first responders, associates and those impacted by the storm at the Walmart store on Gerstner Memorial Blvd in Lake Charles.

At present, only one Walmart store remains closed. All other stores and Sam’s Clubs in the area are back up and running, some with limited hours. For store and club operating hours, customers may check local store Facebook pages or call clubs directly.

During times of disasters, the company’s priority is the safety of their associates. Walmart and Sam’s Club work to take care of associates and their families by communicating with store and club location management teams, reminding associates of emergency procedures and what to do during and after the storm. The company is providing disaster assistance to displaced and affected associates, setting up support centers in the impacted areas and calling associates to conduct wellness checks.

Walmart has a long history of providing aid in times of disasters, helping communities prepare and recover by donating emergency supplies, such as food and water, home, and personal products. Since FY2017, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation have donated more than $58 million in cash and in-kind donations to support disaster preparedness and relief efforts.

About Walmart

Walmart Inc. (NYSE: WMT) helps people around the world save money and live better - anytime and anywhere – in retail stores, online, and through their mobile devices. Each week, over 265 million customers and members visit approximately 11,500 stores under 56 banners in 27 countries and eCommerce websites. With fiscal year 2020 revenue of $524 billion, Walmart employs over 2.2 million associates worldwide. Walmart continues to be a leader in sustainability, corporate philanthropy and employment opportunity. Additional information about Walmart can be found by visiting http://corporate.walmart.com, on Facebook at http://facebook.com/walmart and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/walmart.

About Philanthropy at Walmart

Walmart.org represents the philanthropic efforts of Walmart and the Walmart Foundation. By leaning in where the business has unique strengths, Walmart.org works to tackle key social issues and collaborate with others to spark long-lasting systemic change. Walmart has stores in 27 countries, employing more than 2 million associates and doing business with thousands of suppliers who, in turn, employ millions of people. Walmart.org is helping people live better by supporting programs that work to accelerate upward job mobility for frontline workers, address hunger and make healthier, more sustainably grown food a reality, and build strong communities where Walmart operates. To learn more, visit www.walmart.org or find us on Twitter @walmartorg.


Media Relations +1 (800) 331-0085 http://news.walmart.com/reporter

FWD SPEAK: New Holism – A Transdisciplinary Approach to Human-Centered Design

Latest news from CSR Wire - Tue, 09/01/2020 - 08:20

Integrating architecture, interior, product, fashion and sound design, Anastasija and Martin Lesjak – the leadership behind 13&9 product design studio and INNOCAD architecture – elaborate on both firms’ transdisciplinary missions, which provide meaning in their work and is based on a human-centered design philosophy.

Register here.

About DesignFWD

The Design Forward Virtual Summit, styled DesignFWD, is an interactive digital platform and event from Mohawk Group that recreates the conference and trade show experience with inspirational chats, trend presentations, product demonstrations and more. The free event will be broadcast live July 15–17, 2020, and will be available on-demand at its conclusion. The three-day summit will inspire attendees and build off the momentum and excitement of NeoCon under an inaugural summit theme — “A New Path Forward.” DesignFWD includes directions for summer and fall 2020, and a look ahead to 2021, through the lens of exciting, interactive content. Digital roundtables, webinars, podcasts and other media will connect three distinct but interwoven paths: people, sustainability and product. Learn more about the DesignFWD Virtual Summit at www.MohawkGroup.com/DesignFWD.

ImpactAssets Clients Lean Into Impact Investing During COVID Pandemic

Latest news from CSR Wire - Tue, 09/01/2020 - 06:20

 ImpactAssets, a $1.2 billion nonprofit impact investment firm, today released figures showing clients placed $170 million in impact investments and $82 million in grants in the first half of 2020. This reflects a total of $252 million of funding in private mission-driven businesses, impact funds and nonprofit organizations, up from $17.5 million invested and $20 million granted in the first six months of 2019. 

A key driver of the tenfold increase in impact investing and four-times increase in granting was a robust response to the COVID pandemic by ImpactAssets clients who support opportunities that catalyze and fund critical response efforts across the U.S. and around the world. 

Of the total $252 million placed, ImpactAssets donors invested and granted $213 million in the following three COVID-related critical needs areas:

  • Stop the Spread:  $160M supporting "front line heroes," such as health care workers and essential workers, by investing in immediate and evolving frontline COVID-19 healthcare and PPE needs such as testing, treatments, vaccinations, PPE and health care delivery.

  • Preserve the Progress: $24M dedicated to preserving the progress in climate and social justice by supporting high-impact environmental and social entrepreneurs whose demise in an economic downturn would result in significant regression against those causes.

  • Business and Community Resilience: $29M focused on supporting people and small businesses who have been hit hardest by the health and economic crisis, particularly the unbanked, low-income communities and communities of color.

“Our clients have stepped up with a profound commitment to support critical solutions to the pandemic and provide essential financial support for vulnerable communities, small businesses and impact entrepreneurs,” said ImpactAssets CEO and Chief Investment Officer, Margret Trilli. “The crisis is far from over and the need for philanthropic investments is as great as ever. Impact investing and philanthropy have a critical role in overcoming the pandemic, reviving the economy and enabling a safe return to work and school.”

Timely investments made to meet critical needs exacerbated by the pandemic include: 

Local Communities 

Food Security 

Racial Justice

Testing and Treatment

“We’re thrilled that our clients are leading the charge to fight the pandemic by putting their philanthropic capital to work to fund some of the most creative, cutting-edge responses to the COVID crisis—and beyond,” said Eric Meissner, Director, Custom Investments and Business Analytics.

ImpactAssets has expanded its COVID response significantly since the pandemic ignited in the U.S. In June, ImpactAssets and Stop the Spread combined forces to bring together impact investing and private and public sector resources to solve the immediate and evolving needs of this urgent public health crisis. Stop the Spread is the leading coalition of 1,300+ CEOs and executives, volunteers and subject-matter-experts working to catalyze actions and support governmental response to COVID-19.

About ImpactAssets  

ImpactAssets is the leading impact investing partner for individuals, families and philanthropists tackling the world’s greatest challenges by investing in the world’s brightest ideas. We make it easy for our clients to “discover, connect and invest” in game-changing entrepreneurs and funds. Founded in 2010, ImpactAssets increases flows of money to impact investing with our 100% impact investment platform and field-building initiatives, including the IA50 database of private debt and equity impact fund managers. The ImpactAssets Donor Advised Fund is an innovative vehicle that empowers donors to increase the impact of their giving by combining it with strategic sustainable and responsible investing to build a sophisticated philanthropic endowment. The Fund currently has more than $1.2 billion in assets in 1,400 donor advised funds, working with 350 wealth advisors across 60 financial services firms.  

# # # 

For more information, please contact:
Mo Shafroth, Momentum Communications Strategy
Phone: 720-470-3653

Timberland Announces Bold Goal for Products to be Net Positive by 2030, Continues Pursuit of a Greener Future

Latest news from CSR Wire - Tue, 09/01/2020 - 05:20

In a bold move to address the environmental impact of the fashion industry, Timberland today announced a goal for its products to have a net positive impact on nature by 2030 -- giving back more than it takes. Given Timberland’s outdoor heritage and longstanding commitment to protect nature, the brand is turning to nature for inspiration, driving innovation through regenerative agriculture and circular design.

In pursuit of its net positive vision, Timberland has set two specific, measurable goals to achieve by 2030:

  • 100% of products to be designed for circularity, and

  • 100% of natural materials to be sourced from regenerative agriculture 

“The environment today is in a degraded state. As a footwear and apparel brand, we are part of the problem,” said Colleen Vien, director of sustainability for Timberland. “For decades Timberland has worked to minimize our impact, but it’s time to do better than that. Imagine a boot that puts more carbon back into the land than was emitted during production. By following nature’s lead, and focusing on circular design and regenerative agriculture, we aim to tip the scales to have a net positive impact – to go beyond sustainability and help nature thrive. We are incredibly excited about this journey, and hope to inspire the industry as a whole to work together and change the trajectory of our collective future.”

Through circular product design, Timberland strives to achieve zero waste, working toward zero impact. By sourcing all its virgin natural materials through regenerative agriculture, the brand believes it can push past net zero and have a net positive impact on nature.  

Product Circularity

In nature, everything has a use and a reuse -- nothing goes to waste. It’s a closed loop. By 2030, Timberland’s goal is for all of its products -- across footwear, apparel and accessories -- to be designed for circularity. On the front end, products will be made using materials that would have otherwise gone to waste (e.g., plastic bottles, scrap leather, scrap wool). Products will also be designed to be recyclable at “end of life,” so they can be disassembled and made into something new.  

Regenerative Agriculture

Timberland has set a goal for all natural materials used in its products to be sourced through regenerative agriculture by 2030.  Regenerative practices mimic nature. They allow animals to roam and graze in their natural patterns, giving the land a chance to rest and heal.  And they ensure a variety of crops, replicating the diversity found in nature. These practices enable the land to pull carbon out of the atmosphere and efficiently store it in the ground, rebuilding the structure of the soil and leading to healthy, hydrated, fertile ground – and ultimately, net positive impacts for the land and the farmers.

Timberland is working to build a robust regenerative leather supply chain in the U.S. Australia, and Brazil.  The brand recently announced a partnership with the Savory Institute to fund research into the tangible benefits of regenerative agricultural practices.  This fall Timberland launches its first collection of boots made using Regenerative Leather, with plans to scale significantly in the coming seasons. This leather was sourced from Thousand Hills Lifetime Grazed regenerative ranches in the U.S. through sourcing partner Other Half Processing.

Beyond leather, Timberland is working with pioneering regenerative farmers to pilot new regenerative rubber, cotton, wool, and sugarcane supply chains in pursuit of its 2030 goals. 

“In and of itself, nature is balanced.  Ecosystems work together in perfect harmony,” said Vien.  “Modern civilization challenges this state, but as we’ve seen time and again, nature has the innate power to restore and regenerate itself when given the chance.  And we as humans can act as stewards.  That’s our vision for 2030 – to get carbon back in the soil where it belongs, and ultimately give back more than we take.”

Timberland has long been a leader in responsible innovation. As a founding member of the Leather Working Group (LWG) in 2005, the brand helped drive the adoption of industry-wide environmental best practices at tanneries around the world.  Today, Timberland sources almost exclusively from tanneries that achieve a gold or silver rating from the LWG.  Timberland also raised the bar for responsible design when the brand introduced its original Earthkeepers® boot in 2007, made with recycled PET linings and recycled rubber soles. In 2010, the brand followed up with its first foray into circular design with the Earthkeepers 2.0 boot – designed to be fully disassembled for recycling at the end of its life.  This fall, Timberland reintroduces the Earthkeepers platform as its ultimate expression of eco-innovation. 

For more information about Timberland’s commitment to better product, stronger communities and a greener world, visit the brand’s responsibility site

About Timberland

Founded in 1973, Timberland is a global outdoor lifestyle brand based in Stratham, New Hampshire, with international headquarters in Switzerland and Hong Kong. Best known for its original yellow boot designed for the harsh elements of New England, Timberland today offers a full range of footwear, apparel and accessories for people who value purposeful style and share the brand’s passion for enjoying – and protecting – nature.

At the heart of the Timberland® brand is the core belief that a greener future is a better future. This comes to life through a decades-long commitment to make products responsibly, protect the outdoors, and strengthen communities around the world. To share in Timberland’s mission to step outside, work together and make it better, visit one of our stores, timberland.com or follow us @timberland. Timberland is a VF Corporation brand.

Cotton & Covers: Southeastern Farmers Share Their Soil Health Journey

Latest news from CSR Wire - Mon, 08/31/2020 - 11:19

The Soil Health Institute (SHI), the non-profit charged with safeguarding and enhancing the vitality and productivity of soils, has introduced a new video series Cotton & Covers. The series follows three Southeastern cotton producers as they discuss their individual journeys to build profitable soil health management systems on their farms. Each producer is a mentor to other farmers in SHI’s soil health training program, working with other farmers to expand their knowledge of soil health systems and overcome barriers to adoption.

New videos will be announced weekly through September, according to David Lamm, Project Manager of Healthy Soils for Sustainable Cotton. The series will be publicly available on SHI’s YouTube Channel and Soil Health Training webpage.

“These farmer mentors, who are working with cotton producers in their state to build soil health management systems on their farms, have fascinating stories to tell,” Lamm explains. “Their observations, as they reduced tillage and added multi-species cover crops, provide insight that will be useful to others who are either just starting the journey or are well on their way to improve the health of their soils.” 

The series features Sonny Price from Dillon, South Carolina; Zeb Winslow from Scotland Neck, North Carolina; and Burton Heatwole from Millen, Georgia. The cotton producers discuss why they decided to explore soil health promoting practices and the benefits they’ve discovered as they experimented with reduced tillage, increased cover crop species diversity, and livestock grazing.

“Being able to take care of your soil, and let your soil take care of you…that’s the road we’re headed down,” explains Heatwole, who adopted a soil health management system to increase soil organic matter and water infiltration on his Georgia farm.

The video series is part of the Healthy Soils for Sustainable Cotton project, which uses farmer-to-farmer networks in providing farmer-focused education and training  delivered by SHI scientists, partnering with local soil health technical specialists and farmer mentors who have implemented successful soil health management systems. The project aims to increase adoption of soil health systems among cotton producers while documenting environmental and economic benefits. 

Healthy Soils for Sustainable Cotton is supported through the generosity of the Wrangler® brand, the VF Corporation Foundation and the Walmart Foundation. For more information about the project and access to the webinar series, visit https://soilhealthinstitute.org/soil-health-training/.


About the Soil Health Institute

The Soil Health Institute (www.soilhealthinstitute.org) is a non-profit whose mission is to safeguard and enhance the vitality and productivity of soil through scientific research and advancement. The Institute works with its many stakeholders to identify gaps in research and adoption; develop strategies, networks and funding to address those gaps; and ensure beneficial impact of those investments to agriculture, the environment and society.

About Wrangler®

Wrangler® apparel is available nationwide in mass market retailers, specialty stores, including work apparel chains, farm & fleet, and western stores, as well as through online and catalog retailers. To find a retailer or for more information on the Wrangler family of products, visit Wrangler.com or call 888.784.8571.

About VF Corporation

VF Corporation outfits consumers around the world with its diverse portfolio of iconic lifestyle brands, including Vans®, The North Face®Timberland®, Wrangler® and Lee®. Founded in 1899, VF is one of the world’s largest apparel, footwear and accessories companies with socially and environmentally responsible operations spanning numerous geographies, product categories and distribution channels. VF is committed to delivering innovative products to consumers and creating long-term value for its customers and shareholders. For more information, visit www.vfc.com.

About Philanthropy at Walmart
Walmart.org represents the philanthropic efforts of Walmart and the Walmart Foundation. By leaning in where the business has unique strengths, Walmart.org works to tackle key social issues and collaborate with others to spark long-lasting systemic change. Walmart has stores in 27 countries, employs more than 2 million associates and does business with thousands of suppliers who, in turn, employ millions of people. Walmart.org is helping people live better by supporting programs that work to accelerate upward job mobility for frontline workers, address hunger and make healthier, more sustainably grown food a reality, and build strong communities where Walmart operates. To learn more, visit www.walmart.org or connect on Twitter @Walmartorg.

Cox Enterprises Joins Time to Vote

Latest news from CSR Wire - Mon, 08/31/2020 - 08:19

Cox Enterprises has joined, with more than 700 companies, Time to Vote, a business-led, nonpartisan coalition that aims to increase voter participation in the U.S. elections.

At Cox, we have a long history of championing inclusion, diversity and civic engagement – it’s part of doing the right thing, always. This year marks the 100th anniversary of Gov. James M. Cox, our founder, running for president (with Franklin Delano Roosevelt as his running mate!). A tradition of patriotism and civic duty runs through our roots. Gov. Cox's commitment remains the foundation of our values today and is reflected in our purpose: Empower People Today to Build a Better Future for the Next Generation.  

Read more about about Cox's civic engagement initiatives here.

Warning - COVID-19 in the British Virgin Islands

CDC Traveler Health Notices - Sun, 08/30/2020 - 21:00
COVID-19 risk in the British Virgin Islands is high. CDC recommends travelers avoid all nonessential international travel to the British Virgin Islands.

PNC Commits $10M To Support Small Businesses In Pittsburgh

Latest news from CSR Wire - Fri, 08/28/2020 - 12:13

Underserved Pittsburgh neighborhoods and struggling small business owners will benefit from three programs significantly supported through a $10 million program-related investment announced today by PNC Community Development Banking and the PNC Foundation

The funding will be distributed as follows:  

  • $6.5 million will go toward the Emergency and Recovery Loan Fund. This fund was established to assist in mitigating the COVID-19 economic impact and to help small businesses stabilize in the face of current financial challenges. 

  • $2.5 million will be deployed to a nascent community development financial institution (CDFI) pending certification from the Treasury Department, which will focus on assisting businesses located in low- and moderate-income (LMI) communities, businesses located in predominantly minority communities that have historically experienced decades of disinvestment and difficulty accessing capital, and nonprofits that serve minority and LMI communities. 

  • $1 million will be used to expand Catapult: Startup to Storefront, an accelerator and retail business incubator for minority and women entrepreneurs who want to start or grow a business. The program plans to use this funding to bring its successful model to businesses in communities beyond the East Liberty neighborhood. 

All three of these programs are operated or managed by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) of Pittsburgh. 

“Small businesses play a crucial role in our communities and the broader economy, and many are struggling right now,” said Cathy Niederberger, executive vice president of community development banking for PNC. “The pandemic has wreaked havoc on small businesses in general and certain neighborhoods in particular. Studies have shown a definite correlation between areas with high COVID-19 rates and where Black-owned businesses are struggling. The struggle, and even the failure rate, is more pronounced among these businesses nationally, and we can infer that the same situation exists here in Pittsburgh. We believe strongly in bolstering the economic empowerment and vibrancy of our communities and we continue to find opportunities to support small businesses, particularly in underserved neighborhoods.”  

The vast majority of PNC’s funding will benefit minority-owned small businesses in low- and moderate-income neighborhoods, with 15 percent of the total investment directed toward childcare providers. This investment is aligned with the priorities of both PNC Community Development Banking and the PNC Foundation, which have a sharp focus on boosting the quality of life in low- and moderate-income communities through neighborhood revitalization, economic development initiatives, early childhood education, financial education, consumer programs, and community development lending and investing. PNC’s long history of economic empowerment efforts has earned the company an "Outstanding" rating under the Community Reinvestment Act since those examinations began more than 40 years ago.

“When the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic began to take hold, PNC’s employees jumped into action, working tirelessly to deliver for our small business clients and the communities in which we operate,” said Lou Cestello, head of regional markets and regional president of Pittsburgh for PNC. “This $10 million investment is another example of our ongoing commitment to extending necessary support to Pittsburgh small business owners, particularly those in underserved neighborhoods during this time of heightened hardship.”

The investment supplements several efforts already underway throughout the country to directly assist communities during this time of uncertainty and economic turbulence. In March 2020, to further support small businesses that may lack access to traditional financial institutions, PNC committed more than $50 million to eight community development financial institutions (CDFIs) across the country to support their own origination of PPP loans in potentially underserved geographies and sectors. In April, PNC announced $30 million in charitable support of coronavirus relief efforts, primarily directed toward basic needs and hardship relief programs across the markets in which PNC operates. In June, PNC announced a $1 billion commitment to help end systemic racism and support economic empowerment of African Americans and low- and moderate-income communities. 

"PNC's investment will be a major boost to the tools the URA is creating to support Pittsburgh's diverse neighborhoods and businesses, including the nationally-recognized Catapult program helping minority and women entrepreneurs,” said Mayor William Peduto. “This is exactly the kind of transformative partnership with the corporate community that we need to address deep racial and economic disparities in our city, especially in a time of great need for our residents.”

The PNC Foundation, which receives its principal funding from The PNC Financial Services Group (www.pnc.com), actively supports organizations that provide services for the benefit of communities in which it has a significant presence. The foundation focuses its philanthropic mission on early childhood education and community and economic development, which includes the arts and culture. Through Grow Up Great, its signature cause that began in 2004, PNC has created a bilingual $500 million, multi-year initiative to help prepare children from birth to age 5 for success in school and life.

FedEx and Direct Relief Team Up to Deliver Aid to Lebanon

Latest news from CSR Wire - Fri, 08/28/2020 - 12:13

Originally published bu FedEx

More than 60 tons of critical aid will offer needed relief to medical personnel in Beirut, Lebanon. FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) transported the emergency supplies via a dedicated charter flight to help health facilities responding after a deadly explosion ripped through the city earlier this month, putting significant strain on the medical system.

FedEx supported this disaster relief effort through its relationship with humanitarian organization Direct Relief. FedEx picked up $11 million worth of medicines, medical supplies and personal protective equipment from Direct Relief headquarters in Santa Barbara, California and trucked the load to Memphis. Late Saturday, Aug. 22, team members loaded those supplies onto a FedEx Express Boeing 777 at the FedEx World Hub. The flight landed at noon in Luxembourg Sunday, Aug. 23, where FedEx worked with Cargolux, which also donated its services, to transport the supplies into Beirut.

“FedEx has catalyzed and made possible a huge boost of urgently needed assistance to people in Beirut by providing its world-class team, logistics expertise and aircraft,” said Direct Relief President and CEO Thomas Tighe. “Direct Relief and the many partners with which we’re working to help, including the American Task Force on Lebanon, are profoundly grateful for FedEx once again providing just an extraordinary example of leadership and action to assist people slammed by a humanitarian crisis.”

The relief effort is part of the company’s FedEx Cares “Delivering for Good” initiative, where the company uses its global network and unparalleled logistics expertise to help organizations with mission-critical needs in times of disaster.

“We’ve seen the devastation from the explosion and know people are still in desperate need of help. On behalf of our 500,000 FedEx team members, we are proud to be able to use our global network to provide these lifesaving resources,” said Richard Smith, executive vice president, Global Support, FedEx Express. “We are inspired by Direct Relief’s commitment to making a difference in the lives of others and we are honored to work alongside this incredible organization.”

The delivery of the lifesaving supplies is also part of the company’s FedEx Cares 50 by 50 goal to positively impact 50 million people around the world by the company’s 50th anniversary in 2023.

Leading in a New Environment: Adapting to a Quarantined Workplace with Technology at the Forefront

Latest news from CSR Wire - Fri, 08/28/2020 - 11:13

Originally published by Northern Trust

Prior to the shift to remote work due to the pandemic, only 10% Canadian employees worked from home regularly.1 In May 2020, 40% of Canadian workers were working remotely.2 That number will likely remain high in the future as businesses keep many of their employees home at first out of caution, and later to continue realising the cost and efficiency gains that remote work provides. In fact, Statistics Canada found that nearly 25% of businesses expect 10% or more of their workforce will continue to telework or work remotely post-pandemic.3

With remote work serving as the norm until further notice, business leaders won’t be able to lead in the ways they’re accustomed to. Hiring and retaining an engaged remote workforce will require a shift in leadership strategy.

Expand Your Digital Toolkit
While the shift to remote work may be favoured by many due to a more flexible schedule, and no commute, among other reasons, it brings about technological challenges for businesses that may not have been addressed before.

Driving adoption of virtual collaboration tools can help maintain a high level of productivity among teams as well as a sense of “togetherness.” Just because your team is not physically in the office does not mean collaboration should falter. Video conferencing tools have allowed relationships amongst colleagues and clients to remain productive. When the sense of distance is removed, relationships and communication improve – in fact, 62% of executives agree that video conferencing significantly improves communication over audioconferencing.4 

Quickly turning your phone call or email chain into a video conference is a simple way to improve relationships in the remote workplace. However, some employees may need further training on how to optimally use video tools for collaborative business purposes. Helpful resources do exist, and leaders should empower their employees with these resources to improve their tech-powered workplace communications to up their video presence. 

Some resources that may be worth exploring include mandatory virtual training meetings led by IT teams, pre-recorded learning and development videos (such as LinkedIn Learning, Coursera, or internally produced videos), and PDF technology learning guides that employees can easily refer back to when they need a refresher.

Engage Employees
Using technology to improve communication and employee relationships is important for keeping employees engaged in a virtual environment, but it’s also critical that leadership keep an open line of communication as plans to return to the office evolve. While these decisions are made by high-level management, leaders should gather employees’ thoughts and concerns on returning to work. It’s important to remember that employees face all kind of hardships that could make return to office personally challenging, such as lack of child care, lack of elder care, or immunodeficiency disorders. Even though it is near impossible to predict the course of the pandemic, keeping an open line of communication concerning tentative timelines and options for returning is important and may ease anxiety for those wary of going back.  

A common practice currently employed by many leadership teams is to survey employees on an ongoing basis to gauge their expectations and concerns about returning to the office. Many of us have had to adjust various aspects of our daily lives while transitioning to working from home. Going back to “normal” will require yet another transition. It is difficult to determine if the in-person workplace will ever be the same, or if we’ll ever reach 100% in-office rates again. Technological advances have allowed many of us to perform remote work just as effectively as we did in the office. One thing is for certain – working from home will become more normalised in the coming years thanks to our successful reliance on it during this time. 

In this new virtual workplace, it is required to expand your management toolkit. While it is important to measure the output and quality of work by your employees working from home, it is also prudent to consider how employees are faring in this new world of work.

Evolve the Hiring Mindset
Unsurprisingly, many companies have frozen hiring efforts or even downsized their workforce due to the economic impact of COVID-19. However, certain jobs remain essential and positions must be filled. If the pandemic taught us anything, it’s the importance of seeking out talent for both their technical skills and adaptability. At Northern Trust, we look for candidates who thrive under unusual circumstances because we find they are motivated, resourceful, and willing to embrace technology.

In order to find such talent and bring them aboard, organizations will have to embrace virtual hiring and onboarding processes. Even before the pandemic, virtual interviews were a common part of the hiring process, but applicants could still count on an inperson meeting at some point in the process. Unfortunately, in-person interviews now raise safety concerns and have been eliminated from many organizations’ hiring processes. But starting a new job remotely can be intimidating and cause feelings of disconnect and disengagement for the new employee. If organizations hope to retain new, remotely hired employees, they will have to invest the proper resources to build reliable team communication.

Training and talent retention also become more challenging as a result of the pandemic. Virtual trainings and company-wide updates are now common thanks to advances in technology, but this requires an established platform to house all trainings, something that not all companies have invested in yet. Maintaining a learning and development platform is a costly and time-consuming process which requires the attention of a dedicated learning and development leader, if not an entire specialised team. 

The impact of such a drastically changed work environment requires in-depth modifications to how workplace leaders lead. When the immediate pandemic response dies down and we move forward into a post-COVID world, some workplaces will make remote work a more common option to reap the benefits of lowered overhead costs, with employees who work from home doing so out of choice rather than out of necessity. But organizations should only open up this option if they’re prepared to invest in the needed technology and enhancements to retain and engage employees in a new kind of work environment. Remote work may be the future, but just as in our pre-pandemic world, employee engagement must be prioritized.

1. Statistics Canada, Running the economy remotely: Potential for working from home during and after COVID-19, May 28 2020
2. Statistics Canada, Canadian Survey on Business Conditions: Impact of COVID-19 on businesses in Canada, July 7 2020
3. ibid
4. Forbes, 5 Reasons Why Your Company Needs to Embrace Video Conferencing Now, October 30 2017


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