Since 2003, Peoples Gas has been an invaluable partner of ASM. Through interactive projects and guest speakers, Peoples Gas has opened minds and inspired Chicago teens to learn about a wide array of topics including the role of natural gas, jobs in the natural gas industry, and safety protocols within homes and digging outdoors.
We are honored to feature ASM Advisory Board member, Danisha Hall, Director of Corporate Communications at Peoples Gas, in the first of a series of Corporate Partner Spotlights. This series will run throughout our 30th Anniversary year and recognize the wonderful partners who’ve been vital to showing our teens that they matter. Stay tuned for more updates on the amazing work our partners are doing to support ASM teens and to improve the Chicago community.
Please describe your company’s philanthropic values and mission to make a positive community impact.
At Peoples Gas, we are passionate about our commitment to enhancing the well-being of the communities we serve. We support organizations that raise the quality of life in our communities and create opportunities for residents to thrive. Our philanthropic efforts are focused on the areas of education, arts/culture, the environment, health/human services, and community/neighborhoods. Many of our community partnerships go back decades. Our employees’ commitment to service makes all of this possible.
How has your company adapted its social responsibility efforts to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic?
Peoples Gas adjusted its philanthropic efforts during the pandemic to address the immediate needs of the community. Early on, we provided more than $1 million in funding for area non-profits. That included $400,000 in emergency support for organizations providing food and shelter to those directly affected by COVID-19. It also included $630,000 for our long-term community partners in the areas of human services, education, and the arts to help them keep their doors open during times of unprecedented challenges and uncertainty.
What is your company most proud of in terms of its impact on the Chicago community at large?
We’re most proud of our people, who are among the most talented and dedicated in the industry. And we’re especially proud that our employees look like the communities we serve. Many of our employees live in the communities we serve. Our diversity is our strength, and we’re committed to continuing to develop a diverse leadership structure that will serve Chicago with pride for decades to come.
In a few sentences, please describe why supporting Chicago teens is important to your company.
Supporting the education of Chicago’s youth isn’t just the right thing to do. It’s also critical for companies like Peoples Gas. Chicago’s youth -literally and figuratively -are our future. A large portion of our employees is reaching retirement age, creating new opportunities for young people just getting started in their careers. We are committed to investing in the future of our talented youth to ensure they live out the promising futures they deserve.
Describe yourself as a teenager. What were you like?
As a teenager, I was full of passion for creating a better environment for others. I was deeply involved in activities, including the student council, and served as student body president. At the same time, I was unsure of myself. I lacked self-confidence deep down, but I hid it by being super involved and active. It wasn’t until later in life that I took the time to learn to love myself more.
What advice would you give to your teenage self now?
Believe in yourself! You are capable of more than you know, and you have the courage to face anything. You will overcome challenges you don’t think you can, and come out better in the end. Any negative situation you face will only cause you to learn and grow. Know that you are worthy of everything lovely life has to offer.