Founded in 1972 by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Senator Robert Taft Jr., and Sam Beard, the Jefferson Awards are considered a “Nobel Prize” for public service in the United States. The organization annually recognizes outstanding individual contributors to society and has also launched a number of programs that promote youth and workplace engagement in public service.
Each year, one corporation is also honored for outstanding service. Weyerhaeuser’s deep commitment to citizenship as a core company value, strong support for employee volunteerism in its operating communities, and signature “diaper drive” campaign caught the attention of the prestigious Jefferson Award Board of Selectors.
In accepting the award, president and CEO Doyle Simons said, “It’s a real honor to receive this award, but I can’t take any personal credit for having earned it. Weyerhaeuser is 114 years old and I’ve been with the company for less than a year, so this award really belongs to all 13,000 of our employees. It acknowledges the truly great work they do for their communities.”
Simons also explained why the company launched its annual diaper drive event, which encourages employees to donate diapers during a three-week period to be distributed to nonprofit organizations in their communities that serve families in need.
“A few years ago we learned that diapers are a real gap in social services,” he said. “All parents know just how crucial diapers are, but most government programs don’t cover the cost of diapers and many people don’t think about donating them. Since we launched this program, our employees have donated nearly 2.5 million diapers to families in need.”