Alcoa Foundation Update

September/October 2011 Volume 2

Paula Davis

Message from the President

Streamlining Alcoa Foundation Themes to Focus on Education and Environment

For the last 18 months, the Alcoa Foundation team has worked diligently to ensure our focus areas reflect what we, as a mining, manufacturing and innovation company, can contribute to in a meaningful way. We narrowed our themes to four initially and now we have further refined  them to clarify our purpose and more effectively tell our story.  We are about the environment and education. 

Read more about our strategy (under the environment and education sections below) which will be incorporated into our website and systems in the coming months. Because you are our valued partners, we wanted to share this news and describe the work we will look to advance with your help.



What's Happening Around Our Focus Areas and Alcoa





Streamlining Alcoa Foundation Themes: Environment
Our theme around environment is dedicated to bringing about meaningful and systemic improvements in environmental sustainability through support for research, dialogue, standards and actions. The four categories are:


• Use fewer natural resources, produce less waste, reduce emissions and mitigate climate change through exploration of renewable energy
• Drive greater recycling rates and reuse of materials
• Manage biodiversity, enhance parks and land use, promote reforestation and conserve quality of water resources
• Our goal is to advance sustainable industrial and product designs that address challenges presented by global megatrends in transportation and urbanization
• Transportation: lightweight, improve fuel efficiency and minimize the overall environmental footprint of mass transit
• Urbanization:  Explore the role of architecture and design in building and construction to enable climate change adaptation and enhance the environmental and social sustainability of cities


• Fund proven environmentally-driven innovations – as well as aluminum-enhanced equipment - that generate sustainable livelihoods for those in need


• Develop meaningful standards that measure comprehensive product and industry environmental footprints, including support for holistic lifecycle analysis



What are you Doing on America Recycles Day, November 15?
For the second year, Alcoa Foundation is proud to be a national sponsor of Keep America Beautiful‘s America Recycles Day, celebrated annually on November 15.  More than 2,000 events will be held across the country to motivate family, friends and neighbors to recycle.
This year, for the first time, America Recycles Day will include recycling events at college/university football game tailgating parties to encourage the next generation to protect the environment.  We need your help to get your colleges and universities involved.  Here’s a toolkit to help plan a tailgating recycling event.  


Make An Impact” Energy Efficiency Program Now Available to Nonprofit Partners

Pew Center on Climate Change and Alcoa Foundation would like to share their “Make An Impact” energy efficiency education program to help nonprofits and community groups cultivate a culture of sustainability and energy efficiency within their organizations and communities.


The program offers online tools and resources for individuals and families through an interactive website, a carbon calculator for individuals to measure and manage their carbon footprint and tips to reduce energy use and lower utility bills. The program was recently selected as a finalist for a Classy Award and was featured on NBC/Weather Channel. To learn more about the program contact Tricia Napor, Manager, Community Engagement, Alcoa Foundation at



Alcoa Foundation Advancing Sustainability Research Initiative
In June 2011, Alcoa Foundation launched its global $4 million initiative to support 10 ground-breaking research studies in the fields of natural resource management, materials science and engineering, sustainable design, energy and environmental economics. Partners have been presenting at conferences and sharing about their programs with the media. Visit the program website to find out what’s new.



Check out What Alcoa Earthwatch Fellows Experienced in Brazil and China
Alcoa Foundation sponsored 25 employees to attend Earthwatch expeditions in Brazil and China from July 31-September 23. To learn more about their experiences, read the 2011 Earthwatch Fellows blog on, which includes videos, photos and stories about their experiences.


Since 2003, 119 Alcoa Earthwatch Fellows have ventured into the wilderness, forests and jungles all over the world to study climate change, water issues and sustainability. They’ve contributed almost 9,000 research hours to solving some of the biggest sustainability challenges of our time. 


Alcoa and Alcoa Foundation Provide Support for Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) G4 Benchmarks
Alcoa is partnering with the GRI to develop the next generation of corporate sustainability reporting guidelines that will shape the way corporations around the world define, deliver and measure their sustainability performance. Through this new partnership, Alcoa will serve as a participant and sponsor of The Global G4 Consortium, providing input during the development of the next iteration of GRI Guidelines. Read the news release for more information.





Streamlining Alcoa Foundation Themes: Education
Our education theme is focused on investing in educational and training endeavors where Alcoa, as a mining, manufacturing and innovation company, can offer our expertise and make a difference. The four categories are:


• Support innovative education and training programs and teaching curriculums in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math


• Promote environmental awareness and create environmental community ambassadors among our employees, students and communities


• Encourage college students and young professionals to pursue careers in Environment, Health and Safety (EHS)


• Provide education and training opportunities in engineering and manufacturing to promote self-sufficiency



Student Leaders Learn About Sustainability

Over the summer, Alcoa Foundation provided 50 student leaders with scholarships to attend The Institute for Civic Leadership Academy in Vancouver Island, Canada. For two weeks students from more than 20 countries learned about environmental sustainability and leadership. Read their blogs to learn about their experience.





Find Out How Students Can Win a 2012 Young Naturalist Award
For the 15th year Alcoa Foundation and the American Museum of Natural History are teaming up to find the next young scientists. The Young Naturalist Awards encourages students to independently pursue in-depth scientific research in the areas of biology, Earth science, ecology and astronomy. The deadline for entering the contest is March 9, 2012. Twelve winners will be selected—two from each grade level. Each winning student will receive a cash award, an expenses-paid trip to New York City, where they will have the opportunity to meet scientists, take a behind-the-scenes tour of the Museum and attend a special awards ceremony. Visit Young Naturalist Awards 2012 to learn more.




Alcoa and Alcoa Foundation Announce Commitments at 2011 Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting
On September 21, Alcoa and Alcoa Foundation announced two commitments to prepare U.S. workers for manufacturing jobs and to increase the energy efficiency of its operations at the 2011 Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting, a convening of global leaders founded by President Bill Clinton. Read more about the commitments.



Teachers Study the Environment in Colorado 

For the 14th year, Alcoa Foundation sponsored 30 teachers from 15 of its communities across the country to attend the nationally accredited, teacher professional development Key Issues Institute in Silverthorne, Colo., through a partnership with The Keystone Center. Check out what they learned.




Employee Engagement



Alcoa Employees Gear-up for its Worldwide Month of Service

In October, half of Alcoa’s global workforce will participate in more than 650 community service projects across 24 countries through its signature 6th annual Worldwide Month of Service— the centerpiece of Alcoa’s volunteer program.

Participation in Month of Service in 2010 was the highest on record. More than 29,000 employees participated in approximately 1,000 events across 24 countries and partnered with 3,000 nonprofit organizations. Visit to learn more.



Alcoa and Alcoa Foundation Remember the 10th Anniversary of 9/11
To commemorate the 10th anniversary of 9/11, Alcoa employees and Alcoa Foundation partnered with nonprofit organizations and companies through community service and sponsorships to remember those we lost, those who served and are currently serving in the military and the families who were impacted by the tragic events. Read more about Alcoa’s commemoration.



Alcoa and Alcoa Foundation Support Veterans

Alcoa has a longstanding commitment to supporting veterans. This year, the company had the honor of serving as the national host sponsor of the 2011 National Veterans Wheelchair Games hosted in its hometown of Pittsburgh. Nearly 200 Alcoa employees, friends and family members volunteered to assist veterans competing during the 31st annual games.  In addition, Alcoa Foundation launched a mentoring program for veterans in partnership with American Corporate Partners (ACP).  More than 160 Alcoa employees have signed up to help recently returned veterans transition to civilian life. The ACP program was recently featured in a Wall Street Journal Op-Ed.





Join our community!


Alcoa Foundation's New Board Members

Alcoa Foundation's New Board Members

In July, Alcoa Foundation elected four new members to its board of directors.

• Raymond B. Mitchell, Vice President, Alcoa and President, Alcoa Power and Propulsion
• Tim D. Myers, President, Alcoa Wheel and Transportation Products
• William J. O'Rourke, Vice President, Alcoa, Sustainability and Environment, Health and Safety
• Shannon Parks, Project Leader, Alcoa, Environmental Science and Sustainable Technology

Read the news release for more information.

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Alcoa is Among the 20 Business Finalists for the 12th Annual Corporate Citizens Awards

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Business Civic Leadership Center (BCLC) has selected Alcoa as a finalist for the 12th Annual Corporate Citizenship Awards. Alcoa is a finalist in the Best International Ambassador category recognizing excellent community service or civic leadership in developing countries around the world. Other finalists include Amway Corporation; Hess Corporation; Pfizer/Pfizer Foundation and Tupperware Brands Corporation. Read the news release to learn more.

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Alcoa Selected as One of the “50 Most Engaged Workplaces”

I Love Rewards, an employee rewards and recognition company, has selected Alcoa as one of the “50 Most Engaged Workplaces.”  The award is given to top employers that demonstrate leadership and innovation toward engaging their workforces. The judges also selected Alcoa as one of the “Elite 8’’ among the 50 winners for excelling in the Corporate Social Responsibility category of the Eight Elements of Employee Engagement™. Check out the 50 winners

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Alcoa Named to World and North American Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes

For the 10th consecutive year, Alcoa has been named to the Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes (DJSI), one of the most highly recognized and long-standing global sustainability indexes. Alcoa was named to both the World and the North American Indexes and was named the Industry Leader for the Aluminum Sector. Read the news release.

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Environmental Leader Article

Paula Davis recently wrote an article “Unlocking the Sustainability Dividend through Employee Mobilization” published in Environmental Leader. The article highlights the importance of employee engagement.

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 E-Updates Article

Paula Davis was featured in a recent Funders Forum article in the Foundation Center’s E-Updates newsletter for grantmakers. Check out how she answered the following question. In evaluating your work to promote self-sufficiency and advance sustainable livelihoods across different local communities, how do you know that you're succeeding? What opportunities are there for other grantmakers to partner with you in helping to advance your work?

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Thought Leadership

Would you like an Alcoa or Alcoa Foundation thought leader to speak at your next conference? We would like to learn more about opportunities to share what we’re doing around global philanthropy, environmental sustainability, education and measurement. Send us information to consider.
Areas of expertise include:
• Employee engagement
• Global grantmaking
• Shared  value creation
• Metrics and evaluation
• Partnering with nonprofit organizations
• Creating a stakeholder framework






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