At Exelon, giving is a priority. In 2020, Exelon employees volunteered 133,243 hours in their communities and personally contributed $12 million+ through the Exelon Foundation Employee Giving Campaign and Matching Gifts programs. Learn more about our 2020 contributions in our 2020 Philanthropy Report.
We are proud of our employee volunteers. And creativity deserves to be showcased, don’t you agree?
Meet Sean Condon, Finance Manager for Exelon Utilities.
For the past 11 years, Sean has led an effort that has raised over $94,000 for families in need from the Rowe-Clark Academy, a partner school founded by Exelon with former CEOs John Rowe and Frank Clark. When the pandemic hit, Sean and his colleagues were tasked to think of different ways to encourage fellow employees to give back to Rowe-Clark Academy, all while working remotely.
Let’s get to know Sean and how he worked with peers to raise over $13,000 for 10 families during the 2020 holiday season. (The second most dollars ever raised in a single year!)
You’ve been volunteering for a while now; what piqued your interest in getting involved initially?
I quickly realized that we could really make a huge difference. Originally, we raised a couple of thousand dollars entirely within the Tax Department. And then the thought process hit; let's do more. We can get more people involved and make a greater impact. It kind of spread like wildfire through word of mouth alone and now several departments including Audit, Controllership and Finance in addition to Tax are involved.
How did you raise money for Rowe-Clark, before the pandemic?
When we were all at the office in person, it started out as penny wars. Participants would split into groups and would earn positive points for their team by putting pennies in their own jar. But you could negate your opponent's points by putting silver in their jar. It was fun since there's some strategy involved… as you need to decide how you want to allocate your funds between positive and negative points.
As the years went on, we also added more in-person events such as mac and cheese cook-offs, putting contests, various office games, ugly sweater contests, and more.
What has been the most rewarding experience?
It’s always the gift-giving experience that I think is the most rewarding. Seeing the reactions of these families, each being surprised with upwards of a $1,000 of gift cards that they weren't expecting during the holiday season. This past year [during a pandemic], we had over 150 unique donors. It's a contribution from a bunch of people, but that collective group working together can really make a huge impact on these people's lives. I think that's where that really positive feeling comes from.
One family shared, "My family and I are so thankful for Exelon and Rowe-Clark. This gift not only helped our family in a time of need but was able to lift our spirits during this difficult time. We will forever be grateful for their efforts,” Rowe-Clark family.”
How did COVID-19 impact your efforts?
I thought that we'd struggle to raise much of anything this past year. So, we had to get creative. A colleague (Nate Beiganski, Staff Accountant, had an idea to do a virtual fundraising Olympics instead – which included events such as a duck race, scavenger hunt, bingo, coloring contest, triviaand an overall fundraising challenge. Instead of the penny wars being the focal point for determining the winner of the competition, we awarded points for what place you finished in. Teams were created based on organizational departments and the team who accumulated the most points was the winner.
What advice do you have for people who are interested in volunteering?
Find something that you're passionate about. Volunteering can be something that's extremely fun and gratifying when you're helping to do something that you really care about. And don't be scared to try to do something bigger – step outside your comfort zone, take a chance and go for it.
This past year hasn’t slowed down our Exelon volunteers! We want to thank Sean and his colleagues for making such a significant impact on the communities we serve.