Qualified Remodeler Magazine

JUN 2015

Qualified Remodeler helps independent remodeling firms to survive, become more professional and more profitable by providing must-have business information, namely best business practices, new product information and timely design ideas.

Issue link: https://qualifiedremodeler.epubxp.com/i/532719

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Page 28 of 51

change a bandage by adjusting the location of where the light is. Additionally, his iPad and computer can control the TV and interfaces with it." Tis Room to Dream project is part of NEDC's 10-year anniversary celebration, which includes a commitment to completing 10 community service projects throughout the year. "Our kind of mission statement and why we do what we do is "Lifting spirits with spaces," so we really want to enrich people's lives through the changes we make in our designs and construction," Wilson says. "I feel like Room to Dream specifcally really fts that motto. We're really making a huge change in someone's life and trying to facilitate a better lifestyle and living situation for them." Neil Kelly Company T here are many ways companies can prove their commitment to the communities where they are located and work. For Neil Kelly Company, this includes their recent designation as a beneft corporation (B corp) by the state of Oregon. Julia Spence, vice-pres- ident of Human Resources, explains, "Last year it became a way businesses in Oregon can ofcially register with the state, so it doesn't change our tax structure but we can also register as a beneft corporation and that put into our corporate bylaws that we are holding ourselves re- sponsible, not only to be a solid, proft-making business, but also that we hold ourselves responsible for environ- mental awareness, sustainability and for being a beft to the community." Part of the registration process includes third-party accreditation to prove "you've been doing what you say you've been doing," as Spence puts it. Te company is proud of the "B corp" status, but that does not mean the fve branches — located in Portland, Lake Oswego, Seattle, Eugene and Bend — are taking a break. Instead, the Eugene, Ore., branch recently complet- ed the Veterans' Housing Project, also called the "Seneca House." Built to create afordable housing opportunities for military veterans and their families as they transition back to civilian life, the Eugene branch partnered with the Seneca Sawmill Company and contributed project manage- ment, design assistance and helped round up other vendors. Te Bend, Ore., branch has participated in Rampathons for the past fve or six years, she estimates, building ramps as needed around the community. Branches also have par- ticipated in the Blitz Build of a Habitat for Humanity the past two years, building a one-story house in a week and a two-story house in two weeks. "Tere are certain things we're almost always involved in, so if it's related to education, related to children in the downtowns around our ofces, to environmental eforts — those are things that tend to be part of our focus all the time," Spence says. "Often our community eforts have to do with construction because that's such a natural thing for us to connect with." Spence shares other contributions Neil Kelly Company frequently makes are donating energy audits to nonproft auctions. Additionally, she gives an example of efective cause marketing the company has undertaken. "Tere's a histor- ic theater building in Portland, and they needed to redo their marquee to match the historic age and character of the rest of the building. Te theater is a nonproft foundation and has supporting members, so we said for any of their members who have us come and do an energy audit we would donate $50 to the foundation," she says. "We ended up, through the efort, being able to pay for their new marquee, so it was a mutual beneft." Te Neil Kelly Company can point to their long-time commitment to Meals on Wheels as a community ser- vice efort that has a past, present and future with the company's employees. "Every Tuesday for about 45 years, we have a Meals on Wheels delivery team that involves about 20 people, including Tom Kelly, that goes out in the neighborhood of our headquarters. We've helped with some of the Meals on Wheels fundraising and some of their remodels," Spence says. "Tere are certain nonproft eforts we have long-time commitments to, like Meals on Wheels and Habitat for Humanity. Tose projects are going to keep coming up, and we're going to keep being involved in them." Community service is a part of the company culture that can be witnessed in each of the branches, and Spence says the Neil Kelly Company has plenty more lined up in the months and years ahead. Sal Ferro, Alure Home Improvements S al Ferro, president and CEO of Alure Home Improvements in East Meadow, N.Y., has found most of his community service starts with relation- ships. "A lot of times we tend to fnd ourselves involved with causes that are focused on children, and we'll fnd ourselves involved with things that are construction-related. But a lot of times it's relationships; it's people that will know me through something," he says. "We'll get involved by The "Seneca House" is a veterans' housing project to create affordable housing opportunities for veterans and their families as they transition back to civilian life. QualifiedRemodeler.com | ForResidentialPros.com QR June 2015 29

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