AT&T Pioneers Grant to Community Food Bank

HELPING OUT: A grant was recently presented by AT&T to the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma. From left are Mike Cooper of AT&T, Carol Foley of the Food Bank, State Representative Jeannie McDaniel and R.J. Ransweiler, president of AT&T Pioneers.

DANIEL C. CAMERON for GTR Newspapers

The AT&T Pioneers recently presented a $5,000 AT&T Cares grant to the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma to support the organization’s Food 4 Kids Backpack Program.

Mike Cooper with AT&T External Affairs presented the grant check to Sara Waggoner, executive director of the Community Food Bank, and to other members of the organization.

“I want to extend our thanks to the AT&T Pioneers not only for this generous donation but for the many hours the group’s members have volunteered at the Community Food Bank to assist us in every way possible,” Waggoner says.
The Food 4 Kids Backpack program provides a backpack full of food to 3,030 children at 64 elementary schools who are at risk of going hungry over the weekend and during holidays. The children participating in the Food 4 Kids Backpack Program are identified by teachers and counselors as those who are most at risk for hunger.

The AT&T Foundation, the corporate philanthropy organization of AT&T Inc., established the AT&T Cares special grants program in recognition of the value the Pioneers bring to the communities they serve. Since 2008, this is the second $5,000 AT&T Cares grant given to the Community Food Bank.

Cooper and Waggoner were also joined by Tulsa-area State Representatives Jabar Shumate and Jeannie McDaniel, who both praised the work of the Community Food Bank.

“It is unfortunate that hunger continues to be an issue in our area, but I salute the Community Food Bank for all that they’re doing to fight this problem,” Shumate says.

“Thanks to the Community Food Bank and the Food 4 Kids program, there will be several hundred fewer children in Tulsa and eastern Oklahoma who will spend the coming weekend hungry and undernourished,” McDaniel says.

Waggoner says that for many children in this area, the Food 4 Kids program provides them with the only meal or snack that they will have over the weekend. “Without the generous gift of time from the Pioneer volunteers, we would not be able to provide the backpack program.”

The Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma was founded in 1981. The organization’s partner programs include food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, after-school programs and family and senior citizen centers.

Volunteerism is ingrained in AT&T’s culture. For almost 100 years, the company has been donating time and talents to support underserved populations and strengthen communities. Each year, approximately 325,000 employees and retirees take time to enhance their communities as AT&T Pioneers, one of the largest industry-sponsored volunteer organizations in the country. In 2009, the AT&T Pioneers and other employees and employee groups donated more than 8.5 million hours of time to community outreach activities worth more than $176 million.

AT&T invests significant resources to advance education, strengthen communities and improve lives. Through philanthropic initiatives and collaboration, AT&T and the AT&T Foundation support projects that create opportunities, make connections and address community needs where both the employees and customers live and work. In 2009, the company contributed more than $155 million through corporate, employee and AT&T Foundation giving programs.

Historically, supporting education has been a major focus for AT&T, and education today continues to be the key philanthropy focus. The company is driven to help students succeed in school, in the workforce and in life.

This year AT&T has also partnered with the National Urban League’s Centennial campaign, “I Am Empowered.” AT&T has joined with the League and its 100 affiliates across the country, asking Americans to pledge their time and talent to ensure that by 2025, every American child is ready for college, work and life.

AT&T Inc. is a premier communications holding company. Its subsidiaries and affiliates, AT&T operating companies, are the providers of AT&T services in the United States and around the world. With a powerful array of network resources that includes the nation’s fastest mobile broadband network, AT&T is a leading provider of wireless, Wi-Fi, high speed Internet and voice services.

Additional information about AT&T Inc. and the products and services provided by AT&T subsidiaries and affiliates is available at

Updated 09-22-2010

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