On Wednesday, September 9th, Workplace Ambassadors from 40 companies gathered at the United Way of Greater Los Angeles Headquarters to gear up for the campaign season!
To kick off the event, Chris Carey, CFO and Vice President of City National Bank, discussed why he supports United Way. He highlighted his passion for ending homelessness and called upon leaders in the business community to continue giving back.
Led by the Development Staff, our Workplace Ambassadors held a discussion about why they care about Los Angeles County and why they are ambassadors for United Way.
The Vice President of Development at United Way of Greater Los Angeles, Mario Marin acknowledged this group of passionate individuals and thanked them for going above and beyond to support their United Way community.
Four company experts were invited to speak on best practices that have made their campaigns successful.
Michelle Benner, Campaign Chair and Digital Associate Brand Manager at Neutrogena discussed strategies she has used to gear up before the campaign begins:
Elaine Vilchez, Campaign Chair, Emerging Leader, and Shipping and Receiving Supervisor at Bobrick Washroom Equipment, Inc. shared best practices to utilize during the campaign:
Lupe Viramontes, Former Campaign Chair, Emerging Leader, Senior Buyer/Planner at Bobrick Washroom Equipment, Inc. discussed tips and tricks to use after the campaign ends:
Sarah Hardin, Vice Chair of the Emerging Leader Cabinet and Corporate Citizenship Manager at Deloitte, shared strategies for engaging employees year-round:
Workplace Ambassador Trainer, Charlotte Nguyen, gave the audience a foundation to build their pitch and delivered a session on tips to making a successful “ask.”
Participants had the opportunity to review their results from last year’s campaign with the Development Operations Officer, Claire Kitayama, while Nuka Solomon, Director of Major Gifts, discussed exciting opportunities for involvement with United Way’s Affinity Groups!
“You are the center of our work!”
The afternoon ended with Zondre Johnson, a CSH “Speak Up” Advocate and formerly homeless neighbor, who shared a personal testimony that moved the audience to tears. Having been homeless since the age of 14, Zondre never thought she would ever have a place to call home. Now 53, she is a resident of a permanent supportive housing development and works with CSH, a funded partner of United Way, to share her story and inspire others to take action. She opened up to the audience, saying, “this building is not big enough for the people who can say ‘thank you,’ so I’ll say it for them: thank you for being here. Thank you for being an ambassador. Thank you for taking it back to your office and making a difference.”
“My voice matters, my story matters, my life matters. People matter.”
Zondre’s testimony ended with continuous applause and a standing ovation.
Thank you to all who participated in this enlightening day and for your tireless commitment to ending poverty in Los Angeles County!