HNTB Corporation’s centennial anniversary project, “100 Hours of Community Service,” has been selected the overall winner of the inaugural “Helping Hand Awards” sponsored by the American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) through its Transportation Development Foundation (ARTBA-TDF).
The competition honors “organizations within the transportation industry that have exceptional strategic philanthropic programs — outside the scope of normal business operations — that strengthen, build, improve the quality of life and make a positive difference in their communities.” An independent panel of construction industry journalists selected the entries receiving recognition.
Two California-headquartered firms, Teichert and Ghilotti Brothers, along with Wagman Companies of Pennsylvania, were also honored with awards April 14 during ARTBA’s Federal Issues Program, held in the Nation’s Capital.
“Every day, across America, transportation design and construction firms work to not only build a better transportation network, but also to be good neighbors and partners in the local communities where we operate,” said ARTBA-TDF Chairman Leo Vecellio, chairman & CEO of Vecellio Group, Inc. “There are many outstanding philanthropic programs that show our industry’s commitment to the greater good. Helping Hand Awards shine a public spotlight on some of the most notable, while providing real-world examples that others can follow.”
First Place: HNTB Corporation, Kansas City, MO
The selection of Kansas City-headquartered HNTB as the first place winner by the judges was unanimous.
In honor of firm’s 100th anniversary in 2014, more than 3,000 employees in 30 metropolitan areas successfully committed to serving their local communities by participating in the firm’s “100 Hours of Community Service” campaign. The year-long effort yielded more than 10,000 volunteer hours and impacted more than 100 local organizations, charities and causes across the U.S. Among HNTB employee-led programs:
- Helping assist Habitat for Humanity and New York City officials in the rebuilding process for those affected by Superstorm Sandy;
- Serving as mentors to a group of 15 local students on a library rehabilitation project in Chicago;
- Joining with the National Society of Black Engineers to host the “Youth Minority Engineering Night” as a way to introduce civil engineering to high school students in Kansas City;
- Introducing students to the architectural, engineering and planning industry through hands-on activities and events in Dallas;
- Volunteering in a “Wreaths Across America” event at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., to honor fallen members of the military; and
- Conducting a day-long “Work-a-Thon” with “Hands on DC,” an all-volunteer, non-profit organization dedicated to improving the physical condition of public schools in the Nation’s Capital.
Second Place: Teichert, Sacramento, CA
For more than 15 years, Teichert’s volunteer work crews have: rebuilt homes for frail or elderly people through the “Rebuilding Together” program; renewed community centers, renovated teen centers; built outdoor classrooms for urban farms; sponsored Big Brothers/Big Sisters programs; funded sports-friendly wheelchairs for disabled veterans; and repurposed, planned and funded renovations for women’s domestic violence shelters in California. Firm employees have contributed over $150,000 to projects like “NeighborWorks,” an education and counseling agency for low-income home owners, and helped to renovate Cristo Rey High School, where they provide work internships for students. In addition to matching employee charitable contributions up to $250, the firm’s ongoing community commitment is demonstrated through its Teichert Foundation which has granted more than $10 million to local organizations since 2009.
Third Place: Wagman Companies, Inc., York, PA
Wagman’s giving programs are continuously evolving and changing to meet the needs of the community. The company provides financial support to more than 50 worthy non-profit organizations annually, matches all employee charitable contributions up to $100 and encourages all employees to volunteer time and talents eight hours a year, and board members five hours a month, to charitable causes. Wagman’s notable community outreach programs include United Way’s Day of Caring, National Work Zone Awareness Week, sending holiday care packages for troops, building shelters for homeless veterans, design and construction of a Buddy Bench at a local elementary school, the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and canned food drives for local food banks.
Fourth Place: Ghilotti Bros., Inc.: San Rafael, CA
In 2014, Ghilotti Bros., Inc. (GBI) gave over $160,000 in donations to organizations across California to support returning veterans, underprivileged youth and the homeless, and to promote research on environmental and health initiatives. The company focuses on donating in-kind work for baseball fields and providing financial support to organizations that serve the community’s youth, like Larkin Street Youth Services, Food for the Poor, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Boys and Girls Club and Marin Athletic Club. GBI also helped build Gilead House—a domestic violence shelter for women.
The ARTBA-TDF also recognized the charitable giving and community relations programs of these firms: Kiewit, Omaha, NE; The Conti Group, Edison, NJ; Louis Berger and Ammann & Whitney, Morristown, NJ; Pennsy Supply, Inc.-an Oldcastle Company, Harrisburg, PA; Transurban, Alexandria, VA; OC Jones, Berkeley, CA; and Tilcon, Wharton, NJ.