Cincinnati, OH, July 19, 2017
As we reflect on the month of July and the celebration of our nation’s independence, we are keenly aware of the sacrifices made that have protected our country throughout its history. Veterans are one of our nation’s most valuable assets, and Easterseals is committed to serving them in return for their noble service to our county. We work closely with organizations across the community to provide veterans with the best resources, and we are grateful to those that make our work possible and amplify its impact.
PNC has been a part of Easterseals for more than 10 years by maintaining a strong presence on our Board of Directors, supporting vital events and advocating for our mission throughout the community.
“Easterseals has come to rely on PNC not just as a donor and trusted financial advisor, but as a partner who adds insight to the broader needs of our community and connects us to partners who share our commitment to building a stronger workforce,” says Pam Green, President and CEO of Easterseals serving Greater Cincinnati.
In the past five years, the two organizations have become even more closely aligned as both have intensified focus on the needs of local veterans, particularly as they transition to the civilian workforce. PNC recently announced a commitment of three years investing in Easterseals Veteran Services, including presenting a Recognition of Achievement to a veteran served at Easterseals' annual Brighter Futures Celebration. We are proud to recognize PNC as an Easterseals Hero.
The 2014 U.S. Census Bureau estimates show that 4,637 veterans are unemployed in the Tristate region. Of particular concern is the unemployment rate for veterans aged 18-34, which is notably higher than among older veteran age groups. Even more concerning is the fact that a significant number of veterans are considered underemployed, with 46% of Midwest region veterans disagreeing that their civilian job was a good fit for their skill set.
“Military veterans bring a wealth of experiences and values that align with the standards prized by many employers, including PNC,” said Kay Geiger, regional president of PNC Bank, Greater Cincinnati and Northern KY. PNC has exhibited a commitment to recruiting, nurturing and rewarding these experiences and values.
In 2016, PNC was recognized by three publications as being exemplary companies for veterans, including Top Veteran-Friendly Companies by U.S. Veterans. Every local PNC branch displays a Letter of Support for the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, indicating that PNC fully recognizes, honors, and complies with the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act. They launched a Military Employee Business Resource Group in 2012 as a forum for discussing topics, ideas, and initiatives relative to veterans and to provide professional development, mentorship, and networking opportunities. And in addition to their work with Easterseals Veteran Services, they have collaborated with the Tristate Veterans Community Alliance as part of the new VET-EXCEL Employment Accelerator.
Pam Weber, Senior Vice President of Real Estate at PNC and current Easterseals Board Member, has been connected with Easterseals since 2007 when her husband Warren first joined the Board. He is considered a Director Emeritus, while Pam currently serves on the Board's Development Committee. She has been particularly thrilled with the way the two organizations have aligned better than ever before.
“PNC has a long history with Easterseals,” Pam Weber said, “but it was like the stars lined up. Our military group was forming, and we were looking for a unique way to kick it off and then Our Serve came along.” It was more than just a perfectly timed one-time collaboration, however. Weber goes on to describe how the two organizations have made each other’s efforts stronger, saying, “You just starting talking to people about putting together ideas, putting together resources…it forms a sense of camaraderie, it builds energy and a lot of ideas start happening about how you’re out in the community helping people.”
It is also indicative of the culture of giving back that is embedded in PNC. Weber elaborates, “For myself, I do my job, and I’m proud of what I do on a day to day basis. But the fulfillment of my job is that PNC takes it very seriously to allow employees to do things in the community, whether it’s serving on a board, volunteering…And it’s part of our culture now. It really is.”
As Pam Green explains, “PNC makes Easterseals better. Their support for Building Value, for our veterans program—along with personal touches like FC Cincinnati tickets for an individual we serve who is perhaps the club’s biggest fan—it’s that kinds of support that makes them our heroes.”