When I was with the campaign to restore the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, we conducted the first ever cause-related marketing campaign with American Express. And I remember wondering at that time: What organization AmEx would do this with next? As I recall, it turned out to be a young, new organization, one that I had never heard of before called Share Our Strength. Well, I heard about them then, and I’ve continued to hear about their remarkable work for nearly 35 years now. And it’s a pleasure to have with us tonight someone who’s been there for the entire ride. He is Billy Shore, the co-founder and Executive Chairman of Share Our Strength and No Kid Hungry Campaign.
It is simply wonderful when a person is able to combine two of their passions, and in so doing, creates something that is unique, interesting, and helps so many people to improve their lives and those of their families. And that is what my next guest has done by merging social justice with baking to come up with what some people refer to as the United Nations of Bread. She is Jessamyn Rodriguez, the founder and CEO of Hot Bread Kitchen. Good evening, Jessamyn and welcome to The Business of Giving.
As the saying goes: “Everyone complains about the weather, but no one does anything about it.” That also holds true to a degree for the way our children eat. But this evening, we have someone who is doing something about that… a lot about it, as a matter of fact. He is Curt Ellis, the co-founder and CEO of FoodCorps. Good evening, Curt, and welcome to The Business of Giving.
One of the most iconic names in all of business is General Mills, headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and their brands have been favorites of Americans for decades – Cheerios, Wheaties, Betty Crocker, Yoplait, Häagen-Dazs, Pillsbury and many, many more. They’re also a company that has done an exceptional job of aligning their mission and core values into the very operations of their business and through their philanthropy. And here to discuss that with us is Mary Jane Melendez, the Executive Director of the General Mills Foundation.
“We have a culture that, because of who we are and how we were born, is deeply attentive to the different cultures in the world and in building bridges with other parts of the world. The best stuff we do is when three or four or five of our country programs come together, connect the dots and it all comes together into a single place. And that is built not on structure, but on relationships.”