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FH4Inclusion Reaches $7.5M DE&I Service Goal

February 16, 2023
By Leela Stake

Turning the page to a new calendar year means celebrating the successes of the past 12 months, catching my breath, and resolving what I want to do better moving forward. As global lead for FH4Inclusion, this initiative is on the list of things that give me pride and continued purpose in my profession and life. Six years ago, we launched FH4Inclusion in honor of FleishmanHillard’s 70th anniversary. We marked that occasion by uniting all our global offices to champion inclusion in the many places we live and work through pro bono and volunteer service.

Following our 70th anniversary year, we redoubled our efforts. Two years ago, in conjunction with our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DE&I) plan, we committed to surpassing the equivalent of $7.5 million in pro bono and volunteer time by the end of 2022 to honor our 75th anniversary. Despite the challenges of the pandemic, I am delighted to share that we reached our goal through more than 35,000 hours of cumulative service to 130 nonprofits globally. We remain steadfast in ensuring we show up for our FH4Inclusion clients as we would any other.

There are many why’s behind FH4Inclusion, including:

  • Supporting nonprofit organizations. An essential part of the fabric of our society, they face immense pressures as they work to expand their impact, including an uncertain economic climate and inadequate staffing, as reported by the Chronicle of Philanthropy.
  • Employee interests. Research of Millennial and Gen Z workers – who make up nearly half of the workforce – underscores the importance of employee corporate giving efforts. Specifically, Benevity found 52% lower turnover among newer employees (i.e., those who have been with the company two-and-a-half years or less) who participate in purpose programs.

Beyond the numbers, it is the words of our FH4Inclusion clients and colleagues that stick with me:

  • “FleishmanHillard played an instrumental role in the highly successful and multi-award-winning launch of WeThe15. Led by the London team who provided excellent strategic advice throughout, FleishmanHillard’s international network of offices implemented the launch campaign to great effect, with coverage reaching billions of people around the globe. The coverage was beyond our wildest dreams and has done so much to advance the rights of the world’s 1.2 billion persons with disabilities.” – Craig Spence, Chief Brand and Communications Officer, International Paralympic Committee
  • “As part of our 50th Anniversary, we wanted to address the racial wealth gap. Your guidance and assistance were invaluable to my team as we build the infrastructure needed to make NMSDC a household name and the leading voice for advancing generational wealth in communities of color. I am especially grateful for the placements NMSDC was able to secure in Forbes, New York Times, and Bloomberg thanks to the FleishmanHillard team’s tireless outreach.” – Stefan Bradham, VP of Marketing and Communications
  • “In North Carolina, we were proud to deepen our partnership with HBCU (Historically Black College and University) NC Central University through a specific request from the professor we’ve worked with on past recruitment sessions. Our team virtually visited her PR Campaigns class to host a lecture on influencer marketing and paid social media campaigns, with the goal of enriching the students’ coursework and fostering interest in these growing fields. As we saw through this project, it’s important to establish recurring relationships with local partners because they naturally open the door for new opportunities to make an impact.” – Elizabeth Comtois, Account Supervisor, North Carolina

Through my tenure with the Haas Center for Public Service at Stanford University – as a student two decades ago and now as vice chair of the National Advisory Board – I know that there are important principles we must take seriously for service to be ethical and effective. These include humility, preparation, reflection and learning.

I am grateful to collaborate with so many colleagues who take being of service seriously and l look forward to our continued embrace of these principles to ensure we are doing good in 2023 and beyond.