Former President Clinton Joins Microsoft CEO Ballmer to Hail Giving Record
Company sets new mark in 2007, donating more than $72 million to 25,000 nonprofits.
REDMOND, Wash.— Microsoft Corp. marked the end of its annual giving campaign by hosting former President Bill Clinton for a campus visit. Clinton, joining Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer to reveal the results of this year’s campaign, told a standing-room-only audience of more than 1,000 employees and thousands more watching via webcast that every individual, regardless of status or income, can help solve global challenges such as climate change and poverty.
A Microsoft tradition for 25 years, the giving campaign is a dedicated season of employee involvement and contributions that takes place each October. Microsoft employees donate to thousands of nonprofit organizations working to improve lives. In addition, Microsoft matches U.S. employee donations, dollar for dollar, up to $12,000 per person per year.
This year, employee donations and Microsoft’s matching contributions of cash and software totaled over $72 million, exceeding last year’s tally of $63 million.
“You’ve done a good thing with this giving, because it is inconceivable that we can adequately address these challenges without a strong economy, an effective government and a more viable civil society,” said Clinton. “People have to step into the breach. Benjamin Franklin understood that 40 years before the Declaration of Independence when he organized America’s first volunteer fire department. When you gave all this money — over $70 million this year — you were the 21st century’s great volunteer fire department, and I thank you.”
Microsoft encourages employees to be involved in their communities through a unique volunteer program that matches each volunteer hour with a cash donation of $17 to the charity. As part of this program in 2007, Microsoft U.S. employees volunteered 129,665 hours to nonprofits, and the company matched more than $2.2 million.
“Microsoft’s mission is to enable people and businesses throughout the world to realize their full potential. One way we fulfill our mission is by developing innovative software that transforms the way people learn, work and communicate,” Ballmer said. “Another way is by using our resources and expertise to help expand social and economic opportunities in communities around the world. Our employees share those values, and this year’s giving effort was just phenomenal.”
In addition to employee contributions in fiscal year 2007, Microsoft directly donated $68 million in cash and $331 million in software to nonprofits worldwide.
Since 1983, Microsoft and its employees have given more than $2.9 billion in cash, services and software to nonprofits around the world through localized, company-sponsored giving and volunteer campaigns.
The company fosters a culture of volunteerism and philanthropy that encourages its 70,000 employees to make a difference.
The giving campaign is one part of Microsoft’s Corporate Citizenship initiative, which combines innovative technology, partnerships and programs to create economic, educational and social opportunities in local communities worldwide, and to help foster a more secure computing experience for people everywhere.
Microsoft giving efforts are aligned with the company’s expertise and largely focused on the Microsoft Unlimited Potential – Community Technology Skills program. The program is designed to narrow the technology skills gap, aid global work-force development, and create social and economic opportunity by providing technology skills training through community technology centers (CTCs). It offers a comprehensive approach to broadening digital inclusion by bringing together critical components, including training grants, software donations, community learning curricula, and a global support network called telecentre.org.
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