Case Study: Dana-Farber Cancer Institute's Granite Day Corporate Partnership
The biggest difference maker in securing successful corporate support is finding the proper match in values between the company and the nonprofit, and nothing can bring two entities together more effectively than personal experience. That’s what made Boston-based Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI) and telecommunications solutions provider Granite Telecommunications such a perfect match.
In 2006, Rob Hale Sr., father of Quincy, Mass.-based Granite Telecommunications founder and CEO Rob Hale Jr. and chairman of the company, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Soon after, he became a patient at DFCI, which is missioned to provide expert, compassionate care to those with cancer while advancing the understanding, diagnosis, treatment, cure and prevention of cancer and related diseases. And while Hale Sr. ultimately passed away from the disease, the Hale family could not have been more grateful for the care DFCI provided its loved one.
To show their appreciation, the Hales made a gift to DFCI in 2007, says Suzanne Fountain, director of the Jimmy Fund and DFCI. And the following year, Granite Telecommunications decided to team with DFCI for an event called Granite Day, a carnival-type fundraiser to raise money and awareness for the research and treatment of pancreatic cancer.
“In this case, Mr. Hale was a patient here, and grateful patients and their families want to give back,” Fountain says. “From there, they oftentimes ask what their company or employer can do, what their family can do. That’s what happened here. Granite Day became a way for the Hale family to recognize and memorialize their father.”
A culture of philanthropy
Beyond the personal experience the Hales had with DFCI, the philanthropic culture ingrained in Hale Jr. plays a huge role in Granite’s desire to help the community.
“Our CEO is a philanthropist at heart,” says Rand Currier, chief operating officer at Granite Telecommunications. “Rob Hale is very actively involved in the company, and it’s easy to help those who help us. Dana-Farber clearly helped the Hales. So it starts at the top … and people want to work at a place that gives back.”