For more than two decades, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Citizens Awards have recognized the best in corporate citizenship and highlighted how businesses of all sizes are serving as a force for good. We are proud to announce the 2023 finalists, showcasing the extraordinary impact of business to solve our biggest problems.
Winners will be announced at the U.S. Chamber Foundation's Business Solves Conference on November 1-2, 2023.
Best Corporate Steward: Large Business
Citi is taking action on the most pressing challenges facing the communities it serves globally, and uses the breadth of the firm’s business capabilities, expertise, volunteers, and the Citi Foundation’s philanthropy to advance economic opportunity and create positive change. The company's 200,000+ workforce supports clients in nearly 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi invests in reaching underserved markets, improving financial security and affordable housing, and enabling economic mobility and progress in communities around the world. Citi also harnesses the passion and expertise of its employees to enhance the company's impact. Last year, Citi’s annual volunteer initiative drove 56,000+ volunteer engagements and 115,00+ volunteer hours across 84 countries.
As the world grapples with new and evolving healthcare challenges, Medtronic has a steadfast commitment: create life-transforming technology; empower patient-centric, insight-driven care; and provide experiences that put people first to deliver better outcomes. Medtronic’s Mission to alleviate pain, restore health, and extend life empowers its team of 90,000+ passionate people across 150 countries. The company is building a future with no barriers to achieving health, prosperity, and well-being. Last year, Medtronic leveraged its technologies to help improve health outcomes of more than 76 million patients. As a global healthcare technology leader, Medtronic recognizes an opportunity—and a responsibility—to do what it can to ensure future generations live better, healthier lives.
Tata Consultancy Services
TCS is committed to building better futures through innovation and collective knowledge. While leveraging digital technologies to empower many leading organizations, TCS' corporate purpose centers around uplifting underprivileged individuals worldwide. Today, TCS has more than 614,000 employees from 153 nationalities in 55 countries, 35.8% of whom are women. Since 2015, TCS has worked towards a 71% reduction in Scope 1 and 2 emissions, aligning with the net-zero goal for 2030, and has invested $739 million in social impact initiatives, reaching 32.5 million lives globally – focusing on underserved women, youth, and minorities. These programs leverage the best of TCS’ expertise to create effective, contextual solutions to the world’s most pressing issues and build pathways to a thriving future for all, primarily covering the areas of education, employment, entrepreneurship, and literacy.
Best Corporate Steward: Small and Middle-Market Business
NewDay USA adheres to four core principles: veteran housing, financial education, leadership development, and philanthropy. The company is dedicated to assisting active servicemembers and veterans in making informed financial decisions about their VA Home Loan Benefits and helps them and their families realize the American dream of homeownership and financial security.
With a sustained focus on stewardship, NewDay's commitment extends beyond financial services. The NewDay USA Foundation has provided over $10 million in scholarships, benefiting more than 126 students nationwide. These scholarships offer educational opportunities to 14 Gold Star children and 64 children of severely disabled military veterans.
Submittable’s community of grantmakers and changemakers from public, private, and nonprofit organizations are leading the way, centered on people, relationships, and values. The Submittable community is modernizing social impact in real-time, defining new rules of engagement to meet the moment. Submittable believes that technology plays a crucial role in this endeavor, using software to promote and enable trust, collaboration, and transparency. That’s why, in the past 12 months, Submittable enhanced its platform with new features that are vital to transforming how the social impact sector makes change and improves outcomes for communities.
Striving to be responsible global citizens, Veris Residential outlines its commitment to best serving “Properties, People, and The Planet” in the Embrace by Veris Residential program. The company partners with national and local nonprofits to serve people’s needs, address persistent problems, and enable entire communities. It pursues meaningful actions to benefit its residents, as well as to hire, retain, and support a workforce that reflects the human fabric of its communities. Veris Residential also works to create living and working experiences that enhance the well-being of its residents, employees, and the planet. Embrace is the company’s guiding philosophy as it celebrates and preserves the beauty of life’s special moments—in its buildings, neighborhoods, and communities.
Best Commitment to Education Program
Chicago Fire Football Club
The Chicago Fire embraced the opportunity to impact lives of underserved youth through enriching programming across Chicago Public Schools. Studies show there is a correlation between academics and physical education students receive. In 2013, the Chicago Fire Foundation, the charitable arm of the Chicago Fire, established the proprietary P.L.A.Y.S. (Participate, Learn, Achieve, Youth, Soccer) Program, which is designed to enhance academic performance and development of social and emotional learning (SEL) traits of students through a sports-based curriculum. P.L.A.Y.S. currently serves more than 1,000 boys and girls, of which nearly 95% are classified as low-income and live at or below the U.S. poverty level. Research has shown that engaging youth within these demographics has positively impacted those most at-risk for academic success, as 94% of participants believe P.L.A.Y.S. has helped them do their best in school.
RTX's partnership with NAF (previously known as the National Academy Foundation) provides access to engineering and technology curriculum to communities nationwide. RTX and NAF create programs that provide students with work-based learning experiences and ensure high school students are college, career, and future ready. RTX has invested $9 million into its partnership with NAF, enabling the expansion of 30 NAF Academies of Engineering and IT – including the first NAF Academies in Puerto Rico – and provided hundreds of students with work prep program opportunities and paid internships. These programs began as a way to offer real-world experience with a stable learning environment in the wake of the pandemic and have since grown into a focused talent pipeline opportunity for underrepresented groups in STEM.
TE Connectivity Ltd.
Across the globe, TE offers numerous job opportunities for young talent—whether it’s learning firsthand through an internship, an apprenticeship, or dual study program, TE works to provide avenues for students to pursue education, receive potential job placement opportunities, and address the educational and professional needs of today’s workforce. The company’s two-year African Heritage Scholarship Program awards top-performing college rising sophomores and juniors with financial support to pursue their educational goals. Additionally, students selected have the opportunity to join the TE Connectivity team – gaining valuable professional experiences, support to explore areas of interest, and the potential to build their network while making a difference in the community around them. These path-to-employment internships offer crucial stability at the early career stage when many young people struggle to transition into the work force. The scholarship program allows TE to attract a talented group of young people to help further its mission of creating a safer, sustainable, productive, and connected future.
Best Community Improvement Program
Studies show contraceptive use has distinct health and economic benefits, including reducing maternal and infant mortality as well as allowing women to pursue an education or career. Improving access in a sustainable manner, however, requires strengthening strained urban health systems as well as the capacity of local health workers. As a global leader in women’s health, Bayer AG partnered with The Challenge Initiative (TCI) to help achieve its goal of providing 100 million women in developing countries with access to modern contraception by 2030. This goal – which is not limited to Bayer products – not only focuses on product provision but also on strengthening health systems and local health staff capacity in urban poor communities across 13 countries in Africa and Asia. TCI supports local governments to lead their own family planning programs using their financial and human resources. Now engaged with more than 170 local governments, TCI has recorded more than 3 million additional family planning clients since its launch in 2016.
Tru Earth Environmental Products, Inc.
Tru Earth works to narrow inequities and make earth-friendly practices accessible through its giving program. For every purchase of $25, the household cleaning products organization donates one month’s worth of its laundry eco-strips to food banks, shelters, and other organizations fighting poverty across North America and around the world. To date, Tru Earth has worked with more than 950 organizations to donate more than 30M eco-strips—the equivalent of $14.9M in product. Tru Earth is committed to expanding the program and donating 100M eco-strips by Earth Day 2026.
The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.
PartnerUp® is an in-school, employer-facilitated program that creates a talent pipeline of early career professionals who are prepared to fill entry-level roles immediately after graduating without incurring student loan debt. By guiding high school students in building their resumes, sharpening interviewing techniques, and developing “power skills,” PartnerUp helps students land in-demand jobs while connecting local employers to an expanded labor force. Since its launch, PartnerUp has engaged numerous community groups, more than 60 schools, and 18 employer partners across finance, utilities, healthcare, retail, transportation, and communications. Through PartnerUp, PNC has helped more than 6,000 high school students become career ready, hired more than 100 PartnerUp graduates and introduced dozens of its partner employers to qualified entry-level talent.
Best Community Resilience and Disaster Response Program
American Airlines participated in a global logistics effort to transport life-saving medical and sanitation supplies to Haiti as the nation struggled to control a deadly cholera outbreak. The company was vital in moving cholera medicines that could only be procured in Europe. In partnership with Airlink, American Airlines carried more than 55 tons of medical supplies from Europe to Miami, where they were then consolidated for staged distribution to Haiti. American Airlines’ support resulted in significant savings of over $1 million in transportation costs for the aid community, enabling 10 aid agencies, nonprofits, and their local partners to provide essential care to cholera patients in Haiti. The collaborative efforts of Airlink, USAID/BHA, and American Airlines made a huge difference in this humanitarian initiative, saving tens of thousands of lives.
In 2021, AT&T, FEMA, and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory identified a need to make localized climate data available at no cost and in an easy-to-use format to help communities integrate such data into their risk assessment processes and have it inform their hazard mitigation strategies. The three organizations created the Climate Risk and Resilience Portal (ClimRR) in November 2022. Using climate science modelling that is among the most sophisticated methodologies worldwide, ClimRR gives state, local, tribal, and territorial community planners and disaster mitigation officials free access to localized data about future climate risks. Hazards covered in the portal include temperatures, precipitation, wind speeds, drought conditions, and fire weather. Community planners and disaster mitigation officials can now understand how increasing climate risks will affect their populations, particularly the most vulnerable.
United Parcel Service, Inc.
Amidst the concurrent public health challenges of recent years—including the COVID-19 pandemic and the global disruption to the administration of routine childhood vaccinations, The UPS Foundation’s Vaccine Equity Initiative has provided both immediate relief and the resources needed to build long-term resilience. By tapping into UPS’s scale, technology, and expertise, UPS is bridging the gaps in vaccine equity and optimizing end-to-end transportation. Underpinning this progress are UPS’s skilled logisticians who trained country-level officials, the donation of portable cold chain equipment, company support for local operations planning, and in-kind delivery no matter how remote the location. The Vaccine Equity Initiative included UPS’s partnerships with SwoopAero, VillageReach, UNICEF, and Gavi, the world’s largest vaccine provider, participating in COVAX and supporting Zipline drone deliveries.
Best Economic Opportunity and Empowerment Program
The Best Buy Teen Tech Center (TTC) program envisions a world in which all young people, no matter their background, have the technology, training, and mentorship they need to realize their full potential and pursue family sustaining careers. To address underrepresentation in tech, the Best Buy Foundation partners with community organizations to bring TTCs to disinvested communities. Each site is a safe after school space accessible to any teen and equipped with cutting-edge technology--much of which is donated from Best Buy vendor companies. The Best Buy Foundation and its network of supporters provide funding for dedicated program staff at each site, plus career pathway programming, paid internships, and access to post-secondary resources. By identifying high-growth, high-potential local industries and designing programs to support learning and development, the Teen Tech Center program expands local talent pathways and broadens a sense of what’s possible among youth.
Promoting a Sustainable and Food Secure World (PROSPER) Phase II was a three-year, $10 million partnership program between CARE and Cargill that achieved its goal of improving food and nutrition security, increasing incomes, and reducing poverty, reaching more than 2 million people in 11 countries. Of those, 1.3 million are women. Through this programming, food insecurity decreased, health and nutrition behaviors improved, and poverty rates fell in PROSPER communities– all during a global pandemic, in the face of natural disasters, and economic recession. In PROSPER communities, food insecurity decreased by 16% and poverty rates fell by 19%. Across the program, 41% more women now hold leadership positions in community groups.
Aligned with Visa's commitment to foster inclusive economies and communities, Visa Foundation embarked on a strategic partnership with Pro Mujer, an organization dedicated to empowering women to reach their full potential, to advance gender equity in Latin America. With Visa Foundation’s support, Pro Mujer consolidated its 30+ years of experience in financial inclusion and skilling opportunities into a digital platform for skilling and entrepreneurship: Emprende Pro Mujer. The platform provides access to innovative content, professional networking, and supportive business services, empowering small and microbusinesses to improve financial skills, digital adoption, sales, and equitable leadership. In 2022 alone, Emprende impacted more than 33,000 women from 23 countries. Visa Foundation and Pro Mujer aspire to leverage their global network and evidence-based interventions to extend their impact to 50,000 women entrepreneurs over the next three years.
Best Health and Wellness Program
Abbott and Abbott Fund
Abbott and Abbott Fund's Healthy Food Rx program is one of the largest "food as medicine” programs for people with diabetes. Launched in 2021 in Stockton, California, Healthy Food Rx is a collaboration with Public Health Institute and local partners Emergency Food Bank of San Joaquin and Community Medical Centers. Through the program, healthcare workers provide a prescription for people with diabetes to receive deliveries of recipe-based food boxes directly to their door, along with health education and virtual cooking classes. Six-month data show the Healthy Food Rx program improved diabetes control and self-management, diet quality, and food insecurity for participants – providing a model that holds great potential to improve the lives of people with diabetes in underserved communities nationwide.
Leading up to Super Bowl 57, a critical part of community planning was supporting the NFL’s commitment to leave a lasting legacy of positive impact in Arizona. This included tackling child hunger, and with 1 in 8 U.S. children living in food insecurity, Frito-Lay, Quaker, the PepsiCo Foundation, and other key stakeholders supported national non-profit GENYOUth in the creation of Mission 57: End Student Hunger. This NFL-sanctioned community initiative tackled student food insecurity in Arizona, the Super Bowl’s host market, by funding and delivering school meal equipment packages to 57 high need Arizona schools to increase access to over 8.5 million meals to benefit over 31,000 Arizona students.
Today’s youth are facing an unprecedented mental health crisis with growing rates of depression and anxiety. Between 2017-2018 and 2020-2021, anxiety among children ages 3-17 increased 23%, while depression increased 27%, according to a report by the United Health Foundation. To address this alarming trend, UnitedHealth Group is investing in a multifaceted, holistic approach that leverages partnerships in more than 20 states around the country with school districts, children’s hospitals, clinics, and universities to improve access to behavioral health care, strengthen early childhood development programs, address disparities, and help build a more diverse behavioral health workforce that better reflects the communities UnitedHealth Group serves.
Best Sustainability Program
The Mobility and Accessibility Program (MAP), a collaboration between FedEx and WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities, is transforming public transportation around the world. Since 2019, MAP has impacted over 11 million people and avoided nearly 1 million MTCO2e, delivering urban transportation solutions that save millions of people time, ease congestion, create safer streets, reduce pollution, and make access to jobs and markets more equitable. FedEx also provides expertise in transportation technology, electric vehicles, and driver safety, merging it with the innovative research and global network of the WRI Ross Center.
The IBM Sustainability Accelerator is a pro bono social impact program that applies IBM technologies, such as hybrid cloud and artificial intelligence, and an ecosystem of experts to enhance and scale non-profit and government organization initiatives, helping communities vulnerable to environmental challenges including climate change, extreme weather, and pollution. A new sustainability topic and cohort of organizations are introduced each year. There are currently 10 engagements worldwide focused on sustainable agriculture and clean energy; a third cohort, water management, will kick off in late 2023. The program provides support to each organization for up to two years, during which IBM leverages the extensive capabilities of IBM’s tools, technology, and network of cross-industry experts to develop and deploy user-centered, comprehensive tech-driven solutions – many of which utilize the power of IBM watsonx, including transformative AI modeling capabilities.
Oracle believes sustainability needs to be embedded throughout the entire lifecycle of a product – from design and manufacturing to distribution. The company created the Oracle Take Back Program to enable a closed-loop “reverse” supply chain system that connects the ends of a linear supply chain (make, use, discard) through reuse and recycling. The program’s mission follows the hierarchy of green decision making in hardware applications – refuse, reduce, reuse, and recycle – to extend the lifespan of products from Oracle’s internal datacenters, as well as its external customers, and reduce the volume of materials that go to landfills to drive carbon emission savings. Last year, Oracle and its partners reused or recycled over 99% of the products it took back globally through the program.
Procter & Gamble
Through its Charmin, Bounty, and Puffs brands, P&G promotes responsible forestry through a “Protect, Grow and Restore” strategy. The “Protect” pillar addresses the challenge of a shortage of Forest Stewardship Council™ (FSC)-certified lands. P&G channels its resources to help increase this number through collaboration with suppliers, NGO partners, and others who source from forests. Today the company sources 85% of its wood pulp from FSC-certified lands and is making progress toward an ambition to reach 100% by 2030. Through this work, P&G hopes to reach its own goal of 100% FSC-certified pulp to help promote forestry practices that leave a smaller environmental footprint, protect vulnerable species, and positively impact communities that depend on them.
Best Civic Engagement Program
Colorado Chamber Foundation and Colorado Chamber of Commerce
In Colorado, approximately 79% of middle school students scored below grade level on civics knowledge. To help address this gap, in May 2023, the Colorado Chamber Foundation and Colorado Chamber of Commerce hosted the state’s first Civics Bee Competition—a program to engage Colorado students in metropolitan and rural communities to understand the importance of civics. The Colorado Chamber and corporate partner Climax Molybdenum provided the 2023 Civics Bee finalist with a unique opportunity to connect with the Aspen Institute, an organization focused on civility, and see his ideas become more than just words on paper. In addition to the competition, the Colorado Chamber invited the finalists to its Mayoral Debate to see civics in action and were given the chance to network with Colorado business leaders, government representatives, and community leaders.
Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce
The Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce values relationships, diversity, and accountability, aligning with civic engagement. The chamber fosters a community where leaders connect and collaborate and offer tailored programming that supports all generations of the workforce. The Generation Dayton & Gen D Ignite Programs empower future Dayton leaders with tools and connections for community impact. Strong partnerships with AT&T and AES Ohio bolster the effort to attract and retain young talent. The chamber's inaugural Gen D Ignite cohort collaborated with employers, government, and nonprofits on community projects. The seven-month training for early career professionals included civic engagement workshops, AT&T-backed digital divide projects, and Generation Dayton Day's annual community service event. Both Generation Dayton and Gen D Ignite prioritize these skills of civic engagement for personal growth and organizational impact.
Greater Vancouver Chamber
The Greater Vancouver Chamber partnered with key commissions, agencies, and city councils throughout Southwest Washington to empower youth through civic education and advocacy, and the successful Civics Bee exemplifies the impact of its collaborations. The chamber’s partnerships with influential business organizations offer students unique opportunities to deepen their understanding of politics and inspire them to get involved in their community, whether it be attending a DC Fly-In, or participating in the Clark County Youth Commission or local City Council meetings. These achievements highlight the transformative power of the chamber’s longstanding partnerships and shared mission to nurture engaged citizens who will actively shape the future.