Best Partnership Lightning Round: Why Should These Finalists Win?

October 29, 2012

Today we're bringing something new to you. For the first time in the history of the Best Partnership Award, our blog will feature a week-long "Finalist Lightning Round" to give you the chance to hear directly from some of the people who make these Best Partnerships work

Remember -- the winner in this awards category is selected by people's choice. This is the last week of voting so don't miss the chance to share your opinion by 11:59pm ET on Friday. 

What's the Finalist Lightning Round? Each day this week, we'll feature a different question along with the corresponding answers from each respondent. Today's Finalist Lightning Round question is:

Q: Why does your partnership deserve the “people’s choice” award in 2012?  

Caterpillar: The First Response Team of America (FRTA) deserves this recognition. Caterpillar simply saw an opportunity to utilize our support for FRTA to help get the word out about their unique disaster relief work. The FRTA crew tirelessly responds to disaster sites all year long, and with the help of Caterpillar equipment, they do the heavy lifting of disaster relief - clearing the roads for first responders, using Caterpillar generators to power hospitals, helping individuals begin clearing rubble from their properties. In the wake of a disaster, FRTA are truly heroes to stricken communities. 


WASTE: 2 million partially used bars of soap discarded from hotel rooms every day
NEED: 3.5 million child deaths caused annually by water, sanitation and hygiene-related disease

Hilton Worldwide: Hilton Worldwide and the Global Soap Project deserve your vote because we are true partners collaborating to solve a global imbalance and critical need. Together we have a shared vision and are marrying our core competencies to help more than 3,900 Hilton Worldwide properties recycle used hotel soap and turn it into new bars that are distributed to vulnerable populations globally – a collaboration we expect to result in one million new, 4-ounce bars of soap in 2012 alone – a 300% increase in Global Soap’s donations to people in need.


Intel: What inspires me about Intel’s collaboration with World Vision is our ability to reach people who traditionally haven’t had a choice when it comes to improving the quality of education. Our IESC projects reach some of the most rural places in Africa, providing opportunities to teachers who normally write their lessons with chalk on a painted wall, and students who write down the lessons into a notebook. When World Vision puts an Intel classmate PC into the hands of a child in rural Africa, it opens up an entirely new world of possibilities for that child. So when I think of “people’s choice” I think of those teachers and students and community members, and their desire to cross the digital divide. 


Merck: I think our partnership deserves the People’s Choice award this year because we have a unique situation in which two huge corporations from different sectors came together to tackle issues that are not necessarily directly related to their core businesses, but are critical if we are going to make the world a better place. By educating women and girls, we are saving young women from early marriage, forced marriage, and early childbearing while giving them a chance to work, thrive and ultimately reach their full potential. The new healthcare component of the program helps women and girls take care of themselves, get appropriate medical attention and then, in turn, teach their children to do the same. 


WellPoint: With one-third of American children now considered overweight or obese – triple the rate from a generation ago – there’s no better way for the WellPoint Foundation to improve lives and health than by joining with Boys & Girls Clubs of America to arm the youth of today with the tools and knowledge they need to make healthy decisions for a lifetime. To date, Triple Play has helped more than 1 million kids learn the importance of physical activity and proper nutrition. By working together, the WellPoint Foundation and Boys & Girls Clubs of America are creating a healthy habits movement that reaches into households and is making a lasting impact in the fight against obesity.


Meet the Lightning Round Respondents

Michele Sullivan, VP, Caterpillar Foundation
Partner: First Response Team of America (Learn more)
Hilton Worldwide: 
Jennifer Silberman, VP of Corporate Responsibility, Hilton Worldwide
Partner: Global Soap Project (Learn more)
Luke Filose, NGO Marketing & Engagement Manager
Partner: World Vision (Learn more)
Ellen Lambert, Executive Director, Corporate Contributions and EVP, Merck Company Foundation, Merck & Co., Inc.
Partner: General Mills and CARE (Learn more)
Lance Chrisman, Executive Director, WellPoint Foundation
Partner: Boys & Girls Clubs of America (Learn more)