The Complete Guide to 2014's Best Corporate Citizens

November 21, 2014

On Thursday night, the Chamber Foundation hosted the 15th annual Citizens Awards celebration. All 24 business finalists joined their peers, nonprofit partners, evening emcee Daymond John, and more to celebrate the amazing work they do in communities around the world.

The Honorable John McKernan, President of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, opened the night and presented the award for Best Corporate Steward – Small and Middle-Market Business:

“The winners of the 2014 Citizens Awards illustrate how every day businesses serve as a powerful force for good. It’s an honor to recognize these exceptional companies as we celebrate 15 years of corporate citizenship excellence.”  

We are thrilled to honor the 2014 winners in each of the eight categories, which are all pillars of corporate citizenship. Read on for more about the winner in each category.

Best Corporate Steward – Large Business Award Winner: UnitedHealth Group

A commitment to creating a brighter future for healthcare permeates the company culture at UnitedHealth Group. In 2013, 81% of employees and 98% of executives performed community volunteer work, for a total of 430,000 hours. Annually, the company also gives for than $60M to support philanthropic and charitable work around the world.

Best Corporate Steward – Small and Mid-Market Business Award Winner: Constant Contact 

With the Cares4Kids program, all of the company’s paying customers may sponsor a youth-focused nonprofit to receive a Constant Contact account, free of charge. Last year, the company contributed more than $3.5 million through Cares4Kids.

Best Commitment to Education Program Award Winner: The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.

In 2004, PNC launched PNC Grow Up Great and PNC Crezca con Éxito (GREAT), a bilingual initiative to help prepare children for success in school and life. GREAT has served more than 2 million children, provided professional development to 138,000 teachers, and awarded more than $73 million to nonprofit organizations.

Best Community Improvement Program Award Winner: Capital One Financial Corporation

Since Hurricane Katrina, Capital One Financial Corporation has helped to improve Gentilly, a low-income community of the New Orleans area that was hit hard by the disaster. The company partners with 29 local organizations to grow small businesses, create affordable housing, and provide financial education.

Best Disaster Response and Community Resilience Program Award Winner: Cornerstone OnDemand, Inc.

Recognizing the need for accessible, affordable, high-quality training, Cornerstone OnDemand created an online platform titled, to provide sector-specific training on topics like Humanitarianism, Programs/Operations, Protection, Staff Welfare, and Management and Leadership. To date, more than 30,000 people have used the site.

Best Economic Empowerment Program Award Winner: Entergy Corporation  

Twenty percent of qualifying workers don’t file for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). To help eligible customers file for and receive the refunds they have earned, Entergy sponsors Super Tax Day Events. In 2013 the company helped more than 13,000 individuals obtain the refunds they deserved.

Best Environmental Stewardship Program Award Winner: Siemens Foundation

The Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge, created in 2008, is the premier national sustainability competition that empower K-12 students to develop environmental solutions that can help change the world. Nearly 100,000 students have participated in the Challenge, with numbers rising each year.

Best Health and Wellness Program Award Winner: Walmart

In 2010, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation launched “Fighting Hunger Together”—a $2 billion commitment to fight hunger in America, through donations of packaged goods and produce. Since its conception, the campaign has given $260 million in cash and $2.6 billion in in-kind donations, delivering on its commitment one year ahead of schedule.

The night was not only filled with exceptional stories of service, but also with a promise for even more to come from these exemplary companies. We can’t wait to see what’s next for their projects in the future, and congratulations once again to the winners!

Be sure to stay tuned for next year’s nomination period, coming up in May 2015.