Alcoa Foundation Update

December 2012 Volume 7

Paula Davis

Message from the President

November 17 marked Alcoa Foundation’s 60th anniversary.  Over the course of the years we’ve evolved to ensure that our investments have the greatest impact possible – identifying the themes where Alcoa, as a mining, manufacturing and engineering company, can make the biggest difference with our resources and expertise and facilitate meaningful and sustainable change for society, for our people and for Alcoa.  We moved from handing out checks to developing robust partnerships that benefit our different constituents.  While there are many reasons to celebrate our anniversary, the following 2012 accomplishments stand out: 


  • Partnerships:  By leveraging the knowledge, passion and commitment of all our stakeholders, we have greater impact around our themes of environment and education.  A great illustration of this is the Get Skills to Work coalition with General Electric, Lockheed Martin, the Manufacturing Institute and Boeing, that has the goal to have 15,000 U.S. veterans gain the technical skills needed to qualify for careers in manufacturing.  The challenge moving forward is to find more opportunities to coordinate our investments with other public and private sector organizations that share our goals in the regions where we operate.


  • Outcomes:  We are very specific about working with partners who can prove there are measurable outcomes to their work – such as the amount of GHGs reduced in the atmosphere, the number of trees in the ground, the tons of aluminum that are diverted from landfills, etc.  In 2012, we saw some impressive results. For example, Greening Australia and American Forests made it possible for us to hit the 5 million mark of our Ten Million Trees program this year, the halfway point towards our 2020 goal.


  • Alcoa’s employees:  Through Green Works, Month of Service and the Girls Scouts, thousands of Alcoans planted trees, recycled, and cleaned up parks.  Our employees broke yet another volunteerism record; during our annual worldwide Month of Service this past October, 60 percent of employees across 24 countries joined together to participate in more than 1,050 projects, supporting local causes.


Thank you for making 2012 a terrific year.  From all of us at Alcoa Foundation, we wish you happy holidays and all the best for a prosperous New Year.




Paula Davis

President, Alcoa Foundation



What's Happening Around Our Focus Areas and Alcoa

Partner Spotlight


American Corporate Partners (ACP)

ACP is a nonprofit organization dedicated to assisting veterans in their transition from the U.S. armed services to the civilian workforce.  With the help of business professionals nationwide, ACP offers U.S. veterans tools for long-term career development through mentoring, career counseling, and networking opportunities through two free programs: ACP’s Mentoring Program and ACP AdvisorNet. Since the beginning of our partnership in 2011, more than 100 Alcoans mentored veterans. Victoria Brown, Operations Associate at American Corporate Partners, shares her insights. Read more


Alcoa Foundation

Alcoa Achieves Record Volunteerism Rate of 60 Percent

Alcoa announced that a record-breaking 60 percent of employees, or 34,000, made a difference in communities around the world during the Company’s annual worldwide Month of Service.  To further Alcoa’s impact, 10 of the nonprofit organizations that employees volunteered with in Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Hungary, Russia, United Kingdom and United States received surprise grants of $10,000 each from Alcoa Foundation, totaling $100,000.  Read more


Alcoa Foundation and Alcoa Employees Respond to Hurricane Sandy through $280,000 Donation and Volunteerism

To support immediate humanitarian assistance in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, Alcoa Foundation committed $255,000, while Alcoa employees gave $25,000 to a number of relief agencies, including the American Red Cross and United Way, to assist in New York and other Alcoa communities that were affected by the storm.  In addition, employees organized and participated in volunteering events.  Here’s how individuals and organizations can still provide assistance: www.sandyrelief.orgRead more



Tree Planting in Canada Climbs to 30,000


Over the last year, Alcoa employees planted 30,000 trees throughout the country as part of Alcoa’s Ten Million Trees program.  In partnership with America Forests’ Global ReLeaf program and five local Canadian nonprofits, Alcoa Foundation granted a total of US$100,000 in grants.  “It is because of the sustainable development efforts by our employees and our partners that our region contributes to making the planet greener,” said Ianka Dion, regional environmental specialist, Alcoa. Mobilizes High School Students to Recycle One Million Cans in Less than Two Months

From October 23 to December 18, Alcoa Foundation and, the largest U.S. organization for teens and social change, ran the biggest youth-led aluminum can recycling drive in the country. This resulted in the recycling of 1 million aluminum cans.  The campaign, “50 Cans” uses an innovative model – composed of text messages, email statistics and the incentive of a $5,000 scholarship – to educate and encourage teens nationally to recycle cans that otherwise would be thrown away.  Read more




Academy of Model Aeronautics Brings STEM to "Flight" with Model Aircrafts Kits

Last month, as part of a CBS “60 Minutes” report on the growing skills gap in manufacturing, Alcoa Chairman and CEO Klaus Kleinfeld noted that future employees “…need to understand that their incomes over time are a direct function of their education, not only just their education, but their skills - what they bring to the table.”  The Academy of Model Aeronautics is an organization of model airplane enthusiasts that traces its origins to using models as a pathway to STEM education and careers.  Flight Research Kits that were developed by the Academy and funded by Alcoa Foundation are enabling volunteers to introduce elementary and middle school students in Australia, Canada, France, United Kingdom and United States to the FPG-9 (Foam Plate Glider-9"), demonstrating how Newton's Third Law keeps an airplane safely in the air.  Read more

Join our community!


Help U.S. Veterans Get Skills to Work

‘Get Skills to Work’ is a new coalition that aims to train U.S. military veterans for jobs in advanced manufacturing, bolster the talent pipeline and enhance American competitiveness.  In our October newsletter, we shared the specifics about the coalition.  If your organization shares the same goals, let us know!


Join Us to Increase Recycling Rates

During this year’s Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting, Alcoa, Alcoa Foundation and Keep America Beautiful announced a national commitment to increase U.S. recycling rates.  “Action to Accelerate Recycling” will generate awareness, create incentives, and provide recycling access and infrastructure to increase U.S. recycling of aluminum, plastic, glass and paper.  Organizations including Net Impact and are part of the commitment.  Help make an impact and join us!


Janne Sigurdsson, Managing Director of Alcoa Fjardaál Honored as Female Executive of the Year in Europe, Middle East and Africa

Sigurdsson won a gold Stevie® Award for Women in Business and was recognized for her achievements in helping to build, strengthen and expand Alcoa’s new and technically advanced aluminum smelter in Iceland.  Read more


Charleston Magazine recognized Alcoa Mt. Holly as Business of the Year

Charleston Magazine and Coastal Community Foundation honored Alcoa Mt. Holly for its commitments to giving back and making a difference in the community.  Alcoa Mt. Holly employees volunteer at St. Stephen Elementary on a variety of projects, from building a new playground, to teaming up with Junior Achievement to tutor students. Read more



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
  • Shared Value Creation
  • Metrics and Evaluation
  • Creating a stakeholder framework for a global enterprise



Alcoa Foundation | 201 Isabella Street | Pittsburgh, PA 15212 |