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In recognition of National Volunteer Week, April 15-21, Executive Service Corps (ESC) released volunteer figures for its professional network of consultants – 22,000 hours in 2011, with an estimated overall impact on services affecting more than 3,700,000 Chicago area men, women children, and families.
The 300 experienced professionals, CEOS and other executives who contribute their time and put their career experience to work for Chicago area nonprofits and public agencies represent a growing trend among Baby Boomers toward social commitment and volunteerism.
Pam Wilcox, President and CEO of the Chicago-based ESC, says they come to the Executive Corps of Chicago to serve in a professional consulting role because they know they can make “a significant and lasting difference, helping nonprofits and public agencies to keep their doors open, find new ways to collaborate and consolidate programs and operation, locate alternative sources of revenue and provide critical services to people and communities in need.
ESC believes a diverse and vibrant nonprofit environment provides vital services to people in need, creates strong communities and fuels economic health and growth.”
When RJ retired in 2006, he had served as chief strategy officer and chairman of multiple business units for one of the nation’s largest Fortune 500 companies. After nine months of retirement, he became restless for something more. A friend told him about ESC, a volunteer corps of nearly 300 men and women who use their skills and knowledge from long and successful careers, to help other non-profits thrive.
“I was ready to start re-engaging my brain and ‘giving back’ to the community seemed like a good way to do just that,” says RJ. Since 2007, he has worked with 12 different nonprofits, assisting in strategic planning, board development, and marketing. “It’s been an incredibly rewarding experience, doing all we can to help make a difference in people’s lives.”
A nonprofit in crisis was referred to ESC as they faced closing their doors after 38 years of providing bilingual early childhood programs to the underserved. An ESC consulting team with more than 80 cumulative years of leadership and management experience in the Chicago corporate sector was engaged. Using the team’s experience in financial management, human resources, strategic and business planning, this vital agency is now on the right track to continue their service to the community.
“ESC is such a deep resource; we never would have survived this transition without them. We had been working on this for two years and ESC was able to help us through it in two months,” wrote the nonprofit’s Board chair.