SIGAL believes in promoting and encouraging volunteerism among its employees. Some of these volunteer efforts have begun at the corporate level, while others have started as employee grassroots efforts. Altogether, we strive towards making these efforts a tradition of community goodwill by the SIGAL Team.
In 2012, we're launching the SIGAL Employee Volunteer Program, a company-wide program that encourages our employees to volunteer for community organizations by matching their interests with volunteer opportunities. We recognize that time is key to being a successful volunteer. And as a way to support their dedication of time towards making our community at-large better, we've established workday allowances suited to their level of community involvement from ongoing, continuous participation (such as being a Big Brother or Sister) to specific endeavors (such as helping rehabilitate a playground or build a home for someone in need).
The following include a few of our more notable volunteer-related activities and partnerships. We encourage you to go to the hyperlinked pages to learn more about particular programs and nonprofit organizations.
Academy of Construction & Architecture at Cardozo Senior High School
In 2002, SIGAL Founder and CEO Gerry Sigal, along with peer leaders of the construction industry, helped to establish this innovative program to bring back the aspect of skilled vocational learning to students in the District of Columbia. Its concept was based on seeking a solution to a serious problem that negatively impacted residents and threatened long-term economic vitality in the District.
At the time, the District was attracting new residents and creating desirable urban neighborhoods through commercial and residential redevelopment in blighted and long neglected areas of the city. As the pace of development quickened, developers and construction contractors faced even greater challenges than before in recruiting, hiring and retaining skilled local employees. At the same time, many District workers, particularly residents in communities with chronically high rates of unemployment, remained virtually shut out of the city's economic growth due to lack of skills, training or job readiness.
In response to these challenges, chief executives of Miller & Long Co., Inc., MC Dean, and SIGAL began discussions with the JOBS Coalition and District of Columbia Public Schools to find ways to strengthen the District's job training pipeline. Together, they established a public-private partnership that launched the Academy of Construction and Design at Cardozo Senior High School.
Today, SIGAL maintains its commitment to the ongoing success of the Academy by not only holding Board positions but also supporting and participating in build projects being undertaken by the current class of students. To learn more about the home built by the 2010-2011 Class, visit DC Students Construction Trades Foundation.
ACE Mentor Program
Over the years, SIGAL, in diversing its project portfolio, has established a niche expertise in building and renovating environments of learning from K-12 to higher education. One of the unique ways we give back to the community is to work with our local ACE Mentor Program directors to tailor programs and a curriculum that is structured around a current school being built, namely for students of that particular school and surrounding area. Recently, the project management team of SIGAL's renovation for Wilson High School wrapped-up a series of classes and on-site visits that afforded students to see first-hand the entire process of construction from site mobilization to completion with all aspects in consideration: site and subcontractor management, trade work, and new LEED® technologies. We will do the same for our current project to renovate Cardozo Senior High School.
Arlington Green Games
Being a founding partner of the US Green Building Council (USGBC), SIGAL is committed to building a green future. In fact, when we relocated our headquarters to Crystal City, SIGAL's offices, at the time, was the first LEED® certified project in all of Arlington County. In 2011, we stepped up our commitment by signing on to be a participant in the Arlington Green Games. Each month, our employees band together to participate in surveys and challenges designed to reduce energy use, waste, water, and set other environmental goals. Our participation in this landmark competition also launched SIGAL's formal "Green Tip of the Day" which has since been incorporated into SIGAL's corporate blog, as well as our formal Green Printing Partnerships program.
Friends of Cancer Research
When she founded Friends of Cancer Research in 1996, Dr. Ellen Sigal (wife of SIGAL Founder and CEO Gerry Sigal) saw a compelling need to increase public awareness and support for cancer research and for increased scientific capacity across all federal health agencies. At that time Ellen was a Presidential Appointee to the National Cancer Advisory Board along with Marlene Malek, who joined Ellen in 1996 as President of Friends. Friends of Cancer Research began tackling their mission by holding educational 'town halls' across the nation, bringing leaders from science, industry, and academia to the district or home state of key members of congress. By doing so Ellen and Marlene were able to not only educate Senators and Congressmen and women, but create new champions for biomedical research. Now, 15 years later, Friends of Cancer Research continues to expand upon its expertise in developing unique partnerships and creating a more open dialogue among both public and private sectors.
Humanitarian Aid & Relief
The SIGAL Team recognizes that food, water, clothing and medical supplies are critical necessities for survivors of natural disasters. SIGAL employees have routinely responded to such events by making company-matched monetary donations, as well as collecting donations and emergency relief supplies that are then put into care packages. SIGAL has also helped by participating in industry partner association events held to raise needed funds for emergency, relief, and recovery efforts.