September 7, 2023 •
If you asked who the top 12 companies who donate to United Way Summit Medina (UWSM), you would be shocked to know State and Federal Communications ranks #12 and we have 12 leaders at the company. We also have 100% […]
If you asked who the top 12 companies who donate to United Way Summit Medina (UWSM), you would be shocked to know State and Federal Communications ranks #12 and we have 12 leaders at the company. We also have 100% participation!!!
We have been involved with United Way since 1998 and we have G R O W N every single year. Shortly after our program started, I offered to match the contributions made by the staff, which was directed to our own United Way agency…I still do that every single year. Now I know every company cannot do that, but we are blessed and grateful we can help the best we can.
I want to introduce you to United Way Summit Medina because it really has done amazing things, especially in the past eight years when James Mullen moved, with his family, from the Nashville United Way as our new President and CEO.
Last month we held Knight at the Civic which is when we start our new campaign. We watched Dan Polletta’s Uncharitable, which is an amazing film about nonprofits in our country.
What I really want to talk to you about is our Bold Goals, which we talk about to everyone.
Bold Goal #1—Ready for Success by helping 65% of Akron Public School third graders reading at or above grade level.
Bold Goal #2—Youth Success in College and Career Readiness and Youth Opportunities and Success. This includes 90% of Akron Public Schoolers graduating in four years, with 60% college/career ready. In addition, helping 60% of Akron youth employed or active in extracurriculars.
Bold Goal #3—Financial Empowerment. We are helping financially empower 11,000 people in Summit County and 2,500 people in Medina County.
Bold Goal #4—Health Equity by reducing the Black infant mortality rates in Summit County to 6 per 1,000 births.
We have already updated these goals since their creation and now the goal is to reach these by 2028.
I know so many folks in state government affairs are asked to oversee their company’s United Way Campaign. I am always looking at signs when I travel to see how others encourage participation. At State and Federal Communications, I use our American Express points to thank employees for their participation. (Do not worry, these premiums do not account for more than 30% of the pledge received (more than $500).
If you are interested, I am happy to send you a copy of the United Way Summit Medina report for 2022. Just drop me a line and make sure I have your address.
There is so much United Way does in your community. Find out how you can help your United Way.
June 6, 2023 •
I have learned so much about the Girl Scouts, especially Girl Scouts of Northeast Ohio. The organization honored me as one of the Women of Distinction Honorees along with nine other women in the area. Background of Girl Scouts Juliette […]
I have learned so much about the Girl Scouts, especially Girl Scouts of Northeast Ohio. The organization honored me as one of the Women of Distinction Honorees along with nine other women in the area.
Background of Girl Scouts
Juliette Gordon Low—also known by her nickname “Daisy”—started Girl Scouts in 1912 in her hometown of Savannah, Georgia. The first troop was made up of 18 girls who all shared a sense of curiosity and a belief they could do anything.
Think about it. In 1912, women in the United States could not yet vote and were expected to stick to strict social norms, encouraging girls to embrace their unique strengths and create their own opportunities was game-changing. That small gathering of girls, more than 100 years ago, ignited a movement across America where every girl could unlock her full potential, find lifelong friends, and make the world a better place.
Those Delicious Cookies
In 1917, Girl Scout Cookies were originally home baked by girl members with moms volunteering as technical advisers. The sale of cookies to finance troop activities began five years after Juliette Gordon Low started Girl Scouts in the United States. The Mistletoe Troop in Muskogee, Oklahoma, baked cookies and sold them in its high school cafeteria as a service project.
Throughout the next decade, Girl Scouts in different parts of the country continued to bake their own simple sugar cookies with their mothers and with help from the community. These cookies were packaged in wax paper bags, sealed with a sticker, and sold door-to-door for 25 to 35 cents per dozen.
We know now the prices are $5 a box and there are more varieties than the three offered in the 1930s. I forgot they are all kosher. A few years ago, I made the decision to buy Girl Scout cookies. This year I purchased a record 1,032 boxes from 86 Scouts from around the country. I put the word out on Facebook and moms (mostly) send me a link to order. Since I personally buy them the first year I had them delivered to my house, but that took up most of the foyer. The following years, I just took the time to use separate “bill to” and “deliver to” addresses.
The Scouts I support have slipped in thank you cards in the boxes, and I always feel a little closer to them. I love the badge they earned for participating in this project and I must admit John Chames, my husband, buys his own stash when he sees them at the grocery store. [He doesn’t get the cookies I buy.]
This year I have donated ALL the cookies to the Good Samaritans Food Bank program at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Akron. Good Samaritans provides food to those in our community who are unable to feed their families. Cookies are a great treat to those who truly must watch how money is spent.
I cannot put this much time to multiple service groups. I am proud of this service project that I do for our Scouts. I call these Scouts “future interns” at State and Federal Communications. Starting girls early with the Girl Scouts is a great leadership program. It helped many women we know—Senator Hillary Clinton, Taylor Swift, Mariah Carey, and Venus Williams to name just some.
Until next month think how you can be a great part of your community and in 2024 when you see the Girl Scouts at various plazas, please know your $5 contribution helps them with their leadership badge.
May 10, 2023 •
People talk about Corporate Social Responsibility or CSR as we refer to it at State and Federal Communications. But is it a line item in your company’s business plan and budget or just something on your TO-DO list, transferred from […]
People talk about Corporate Social Responsibility or CSR as we refer to it at State and Federal Communications. But is it a line item in your company’s business plan and budget or just something on your TO-DO list, transferred from one week to the next?
In 2017, we had the opportunity to bring Joe May back from a brief hiatus to head up our CSR department. We have always been incredibly involved in our community, industry, and with our clients but it was not organized. Joe keeps track of everything we are involved in and has a boatload of examples to share in our CSR annual report.
The 2022 Annual Report is in production and will be available soon on our website—www.stateandfed.com.
We always hear a successful CSR program begins at the top…and at State and Federal Communications, which is me. As time and travel permit, you will see me with the team at Read to Me Day from the United Way of Summit and Medina; I order Girl Scout cookies from every scout who asks; and we have provided time off for these activities during the regular
day of business.
Check out the past and current reports on our website, www.stateandfed.com. You will see the staff out and about at Day of Action events; food distribution held monthly; and even working the polls on Election Day.
CSR is part of our culture. CSR is what we do to help others less fortunate. Our CSR programs are recognized by other businesses, our local county government, and definitely by the groups we support.
Start your CSR program today. It truly is a wonderful way to give back, extend a hand up to help others.
Until next month, how will you help your community in the next 31 days. Share your story with us. I am going to chair the United Way campaign in our community and will
have lots of examples of giving back and helping others.
October 13, 2022 •
October, as with many of the months, recognizes several observances – one of which I just recently found out is National Mentoring Day (October 27th). This began me thinking about my own journey towards mentorship, which first began with me […]
October, as with many of the months, recognizes several observances – one of which I just recently found out is National Mentoring Day (October 27th). This began me thinking about my own journey towards mentorship, which first began with me loudly professing in my head that “I’m not sure I have the qualifications to be anyone’s mentor?”. Fast forward to today, and I have realized that not only do I have the qualifications, but there is a “plus” in that mentees themselves also bring something to the table!
Mentees (like their mentors) have unique work/life experiences and perspectives that make for the ultimate “teachable moments”, and just as your mentee may gain some valuable advice, a different outlook, or a great job lead, so too can you gain all of these things – and more! I have had the opportunity to participate in a few mentoring programs over the years, and they were wonderful experiences that culminated with great friendships being made which continue to blossom! Not to say that every mentor-mentee experience turns out to be a positive one, but more often than not, the reward that comes from mentorship is priceless!
So, I say to you – the next time you have an opportunity to be a mentor to someone, get out of your own head and seize the opportunity – you are definitely the mentor you were born to be!
August 18, 2022 •
Our Tools for School student supply drive is in the books, and we are thrilled with the results! We asked our staff to donate school supplies, helping local groups collect materials for children to use this school year. The supply […]
Our Tools for School student supply drive is in the books, and we are thrilled with the results!
We asked our staff to donate school supplies, helping local groups collect materials for children to use this school year. The supply drive directly benefited students through two organizations: United Way of Summit and Medina, and Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church’s Philoptochos society.
Our amazing staff stepped up to the plate, and is shown with this outstanding final tally: 52 utility boxes, 1 container of Clorox wipes, 100 quart Ziplock bags, 50 gallon Ziplock bags, 110 folders, 2 notebooks, 12 binders, 750 sheets of notebook paper, 114 glue sticks, 150 washable markers, 144 highlighter pens, 72 dry erase markers, 14 erasers, 98 packs of 24 crayons, 875 pencils, 80 ballpoint pens, 44 rulers, and 48 pairs of women’s ankle socks.
See the video below to learn more about our Tools for School supply drive:
May 17, 2022 •
Cookies make the world a better place. Elizabeth Bartz has once again supported the Girl Scouts in an extraordinary way. This year, she bought 1077 boxes of cookies from girl scouts in six states, helping 86 scouts in the process! […]
Cookies make the world a better place.
Elizabeth Bartz has once again supported the Girl Scouts in an extraordinary way. This year, she bought 1077 boxes of cookies from girl scouts in six states, helping 86 scouts in the process! “I love helping the Girl Scouts and I didn’t eat a single cookie!” said Bartz.
The giving didn’t stop there. On Saturday, May 7, 741 boxes of cookies were donated to Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church’s Good Samaritans, a group that provides a monthly food distribution to families in need. Another 200 boxes were given to the Philoptochos Backpacks program serving the students at Robinson Elementary School in Akron. One hundred boxes went to Annunciation’s coffee hour after church, and 36 boxes to the staff of Greenfield Estates memory facility.
We are calling this the Cookiepalooza 2022!
May 5, 2022 •
I had an opportunity a few years ago and I took it. State and Federal Communications had the opportunity to have Joe May oversee our Corporate Social Responsibility. He already had started our social media program and helped us with […]
I had an opportunity a few years ago and I took it. State and Federal Communications had the opportunity to have Joe May oversee our Corporate Social Responsibility. He already had started our social media program and helped us with client analytics, and it was time to consider how else he could help the company.
Joe always loved how involved we were in the community, and we worked on a great job description where he headed up our new Corporate Social Responsibility. He would find organizations looking for an extra hand and coordinated a group of staff to help. We all realized how much we have been involved in community, state, and even national.
We have now published our fifth CSR annual report, which provides you with the timeline of how long State and Federal Communications has been a part of many national and local organizations. Plus, it includes the current staff who go out of their way to help organizations around them.
It is not easy to do. It takes a lot of organization. And, it takes a commitment from everyone at State and Federal Communications.
As our 2021 Annual Report states, “We care about our work. We care about our community. We care about diversity, equity, and inclusion. Doing the right thing is just good business… and we’re not done yet!”
Let me know if you are interested in hearing what our plans are for 2022. We are happy to set up a webinar to help others jump on the CSR bandwagon.
[From May 2022 Compliance Now]
April 14, 2022 •
State and Federal Communications remains committed to strengthening our community through corporate philanthropy, community engagement, sustainability, and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. We are happy to present our CSR Annual Report for 2021. In this report, you will find not only […]
State and Federal Communications remains committed to strengthening our community through corporate philanthropy, community engagement, sustainability, and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. We are happy to present our CSR Annual Report for 2021. In this report, you will find not only this company’s efforts from the previous year, but also a testament to its longevity.
“There is no quick path to a successful CSR program. It takes culture-building, determination, and accountability. It takes everybody on the team.” -Elizabeth Bartz, President and CEO
Thank you for your interest in our Corporate Social Responsibility Program.
March 29, 2022 •
Tell me about Torchbearers. What is the organization? Torchbearers is a volunteer-run organization founded in 2003 to strengthen the connection between Akron-area nonprofits and emerging leaders as well as to further efforts to attract and retain emerging leaders in Greater […]
Tell me about Torchbearers. What is the organization? Torchbearers is a volunteer-run organization founded in 2003 to strengthen the connection between Akron-area nonprofits and emerging leaders as well as to further efforts to attract and retain emerging leaders in Greater Akron. The organization is a bridge between established leadership of the community and leaders of the future. Torchbearers works with more than 150 local organizations, including the Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank, the Akron Snow Angels, Downtown Akron Partnership, and the International Institute of Akron.
Tell me a little bit about your membership and involvement. I was selected to join the Torchbearers Class of 2021 beginning January 1. In February, I joined the Leadership & Development Committee of Torchbearers facilitated by Executive Director Jeremy Lile of Heart to Heart Communications. The Leadership & Development Committee provides Torchbearers with a year-long curriculum devoted to personal and professional development, board leadership, and community exposure.
When does this group meet? The Leadership & Development Committee of Torchbearers meets virtually on the fourth Thursday of every month in the evenings. Additionally, our committee plans and executes bimonthly Leadership & Development sessions for first-year members on the topics of strengths and personal awareness, communications, collaboration, and leading change.
How do you see Torchbearers as a way to develop your leadership in the community? As a member of the Leadership & Development Committee, I am shaping my individual and collective leadership styles while increasing my engagement in the community. On June 2, I co-planned and hosted a Leadership & Development session on the theme of collaboration. I invited guest panelists from Community Legal Aid Services and the International Institute of Akron to share with first-year members the collaborative work being done to support immigrant and refugee communities in Akron.
What is your favorite part of being a member of Torchbearers? The social interaction at in-person events! Torchbearers hosted its first in-person member event on the evening of June 22 at the Akron Art Museum, and it was a great way to finally meet my fellow members I had been engaging with virtually.
Thank you very much, Joanna. I am inspired by your leadership in the community. All the best to you and your Torchbearers experience!
March 29, 2022 •
How long have you been associated with the Akron Rotary Camp? I have been associated with Rotary Camp for four years now. I started my first summer in 2017 and worked two summers and two off-seasons. This summer, I am […]
How long have you been associated with the Akron Rotary Camp? I have been associated with Rotary Camp for four years now. I started my first summer in 2017 and worked two summers and two off-seasons. This summer, I am trying to get out and help and see the staff and campers whenever I can.
Who are they and what do they do? Akron Rotary Camp offers a full summer camp experience to children and adults with special needs. They offer eight weeks of overnight and day camp for all ages and ability levels with trained staff to handle every situation. The mission statement of camp is to live in a world where there are only abilities.
Why is this important to you? Camp is a special place for me because stigma and ability level does not exist at Akron Rotary Camp. When you are at camp, you do not see limitations or barriers, but rather, children enjoying the pure joy of the summer camp experience. This is so important to me because I personally believe camp is a truly unique place where people can get out of their comfort zone, make friends, and learn things about themselves in different ways than they would in a typical day. Our campers are only seen as campers and that is a profound and powerful view of how I want to see the world around me.
How have you been volunteering with them? After I worked my summers at camp, I worked a lot of off-season weekend respites and still try to take a weekend here and there to get out there at least once or twice a year. In the past months, volunteering has been tougher, as activities were limited to staff and a short list of campers, but this summer I intend on going down on some weeknights when I am free and help in whatever capacity I can.
Am I remembering correctly that you did a Polar Bear Jump into freezing water? You are remembering correctly! I did a Polar Bear Jump to raise money to send kiddos to camp. The jump is an annual event but proceeds go to Rotary Camp every other year, so you can bet that if it is one of those years, I will be jumping in that frozen water.
How can people get involved with Akron Rotary Camp? People can get involved with camp in any capacity that they want. A good start is by following their social media accounts and seeing what events are coming up. They are always having fundraisers, volunteer opportunities, and community outreach to get involved with. Secondly, if you know any young adults who needs a seasonal job and could excel in a role at camp, please let them know about camp!
Thank you very much, Ben!
March 24, 2022 •
What made you decide to try mentoring in the iCARE Mentoring program? It all started when Community Outreach at Kent State encouraged students to become a mentor for the iPromise program, to help high school students prepare for success in […]
What made you decide to try mentoring in the iCARE Mentoring program?
It all started when Community Outreach at Kent State encouraged students to become a mentor for the iPromise program, to help high school students prepare for success in college and discover their interests. I volunteered because I thought it was an important role that would have a positive impact on Akron youth.
How would you describe your role as a mentor?
Since joining, iCARE mentoring has shifted its focus from primarily college readiness, and now puts more emphasis on helping students build constructive relationships with adults and providing overall support for students from the community. My role as a mentor varies over time, but so far has included serving as a motivator, a tutor, and a friend.
What is your favorite thing about this program?
My favorite thing about being a mentor is being able to host a safe space for the mentee to be open and talk about whatever is on their mind. Even though it’s only for an hour a week, I think it’s very beneficial for the student to have a mini escape from the day-to-day pressures of being in school and being surrounded by teachers and other students.
If someone is interested in trying mentoring next year, what one piece of advice would you give?
To anyone considering becoming a mentor, I would highly encourage it. Being a consistent listener in a student’s life can make all the difference, and it is an easy way to be a positive influence. My advice for new mentors would be to try and let the child lead the session so they can figure out what they want to get out of it, then you will be able to accommodate their needs in the best way possible.
Thank you so much, Zoe for sharing with us all you do for iCARE Mentoring!
November 18, 2021 •
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) efforts, particularly over the past few years, have taken center stage, with a number of organizations releasing statements of support and hiring Chief Diversity Officers. While these things should not go unrecognized, it is important […]
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) efforts, particularly over the past few years, have taken center stage, with a number of organizations releasing statements of support and hiring Chief Diversity Officers. While these things should not go unrecognized, it is important to note that work in the DEI space is not a “one-and-done” event; rather, it is a lifelong journey of learning, engagement and reflection. Along these lines, it is imperative to acknowledge that conversations around DEI go far beyond just those of race and gender, and thus, opportunities must be created (and available) for people to come together on a consistent basis (and in a safe and brave space) in order to engage in the plethora of these DEI conversations.
As Chair of Women In Government Relations’ (WGR) DEI Committee, one of the things that we do to engage the membership around DEI issues is to host a discussion topic during the first half of each of our monthly meetings. These conversations not only provide an opportunity for WGR members to connect with one another, but they also nurture and encourage that sense of learning, engagement and reflection that I mentioned earlier. Though at times uncomfortable, this dialogue produces a greater awareness for our committee members, and also helps to develop a sense of community – meeting people where they are, while creating the space to have these crucial conversations in a non-judgmental setting. For this year, our discussion topics have included: Allyship; Colorism; Age and Organizational Power; and PTSD Awareness. I would argue that our monthly discussion topics have become “legendary” within WGR; but more importantly, they have bridged gaps and brought all kinds of people together!
While my work within WGR is rewarding, there is an equal reward that comes from working for an organization (State and Federal Communications) that also values and understands the importance of DEI. Our CEO, Elizabeth Bartz, convened staff members from across departments to take a deep dive into how well we, as an organization, are “walking the talk” when it comes to our DEI commitment. As a result, we fine-tuned our company mission statement, and began to offer trainings to the staff on a variety of DEI topics. Recognizing, however, that we are not experts in this space, we have partnered with Heart To Heart Leadership to assist us with strengthening even more our DEI engagement.
I want to thank both WGR and State and Federal Communications for supporting me as I move along in my DEI journey! When organizations are committed to DEI, everyone wins – what will you do starting today in support of DEI?
November 16, 2021 •
Hi Adrienne! Tell me about CASA. Why is this work important to you? CASA, or Court Appointed Special Advocates, are community volunteers who speak out and stand up for abused and neglected children within the court system. Quite simply, these […]
Hi Adrienne! Tell me about CASA. Why is this work important to you? CASA, or Court Appointed Special Advocates, are community volunteers who speak out and stand up for abused and neglected children within the court system. Quite simply, these children did not ask for the circumstances for which they were forced to deal with and CASA provides a neutral third party who will advocate for their best interests. As a board member, I help raise funds to support these volunteers, like gift cards so they can take a kid to get a meal. We fundraise to provide aid to the children, whether that be school supplies or Christmas gifts. Additionally, we raise funds to support CASA trainings to ensure our volunteers are well trained and supported.
This work is important to me because there is not a more vulnerable group than children. These kids don’t have security and often the people that are supposed to protect have failed them in the worst ways. A CASA can provide the support, security, and hope a child so desperately needs. I don’t think it matters what your creed or your politics are… everyone can agree this program is vital to help our community’s most defenseless population. To me, supporting CASA is a must, whether I am on the board or not.
How long have you been on the CASA Board? I have been on the board since Summer 2020.
A lot has happened in the last year. What was it like to be on a board during the pandemic? This is first time being on a board, so in some ways I have no idea how different it is than normal. It has been a struggle to plan fundraisers, but the community has shown up. I think the pandemic has forced us all to find new and creative ways to entice support from the community. Also, I think we should always have virtual options when it comes to fundraisers. It is a new world we are still navigating, but we are all going through it.
How do you see the CASA Board helping you to develop your leadership in the community? I have never wanted to be on any board. I like to show up and help out, but being on a board was not in my plans. However, Mr. Michael Beckett, Associate Director, Research Services and former CASA Board President, approached me about being on the board when he left because he knows how much I support CASA’s mission. This is definitely outside of my comfort zone. I know people think I am outgoing, but asking people for money has never been one of my strengths. So, being on the board has forced me to develop my community leadership skills. Growth can be uncomfortable, but there is not another organization that I would do this for. I am thankful to work for a company with a CEO who supports this type of work and allows me to develop skills I never thought I would need to use.
What is your favorite part of working with CASA? My favorite part is knowing I am doing something worthwhile. I am extremely passionate about what CASA does and think it is a vital service to help strengthen our community. No child should feel unsafe and every child should have someone looking out for their best interests.
If anyone has questions about CASA or how you can support this necessary organization, please feel free to reach out to me. I am always happy to discuss CASA!
October 12, 2021 •
State and Federal Communications, Inc. is hosting its 11th annual Donuts and Cider Sale on October 29, 2021! Become the favorite co-worker, and kick off Halloween weekend with a sweet treat for your office! Krispy Kreme glazed donuts are $9 […]
State and Federal Communications, Inc. is hosting its 11th annual Donuts and Cider Sale on October 29, 2021!
Become the favorite co-worker, and kick off Halloween weekend with a sweet treat for your office!
Krispy Kreme glazed donuts are $9 for a dozen and apple cider is $5 for a gallon.
All proceeds will benefit the good work of our friends at United Way of Summit and Medina.
Place your order by Monday, October 25, by contacting Joe May at email@example.com or calling (330) 761-9960.
Orders can be picked up on Friday, October 29, from 8 to 10 a.m. at the front of our office: 80 S. Summit St. in downtown Akron.
State and Federal Communications, Inc. provides research and consulting services for government relations professionals on lobbying laws, procurement lobbying laws, political contribution laws in the United States and Canada. Learn more by visiting stateandfed.com.