Employee Impact: Being a Mentor and Role Model for Children

February 27, 2018

This post is the first part of a series that highlights Cambia’s innovative Executive Board Placement program, which works to match company employees with nonprofit organizations looking to grow their board of directors. A key part of the Corporate Social Responsibility department corporate giving approach, the board placement program has become one of the most impactful ways Cambia strengthens local communities and supports employees in their own volunteerism. Through the board placement program and the corresponding funding that complements an employee’s board service, Cambia strives to enable employees to serve the greater good. 

Big Brothers, Big Sisters of Utah (BBBSU) was established to provide children facing adversity with an ongoing, dedicated relationship with a mentor who can help positively impact the child’s life. For Levi Smith, Director of Infrastructure as a Service at Cambia Health Solutions, he was intrigued by the possibility of supporting an organization that is focused on helping children in the community.

What drew you to BBBSU?

Levi: Years ago, my wife and I adopted a baby girl, Zoe, and I felt that working with BBBSU would be a great way to give back to my community. 

What do you do as a board member?

LS: I am required to attend a board meeting every other month, and a committee meeting every other month. The board includes a variety of people from the community who bring specific areas of expertise to the team such as lawyers, doctors, etc. My expertise is in information technology so I’ve been able to advise BBBSU on IT-related matters.

Have there been any projects that you’ve been able to help drive?

LS: Six months ago, we realized that there was a massive amount of paper records that were housed on-site. While it’s important to keep records, there is also a certain amount of liability involved. The board realized that a records retention policy was needed so I helped advise them on a policy and recommended vendors to help support our records retention needs.

What types of programs does BBBSU provide?

LS: There are three programs that are designed to help support children in our communities: pairing children with an adult mentor; site-based where we work with schools in local communities throughout Utah to pair children over 14 with kids in elementary school; and Mentor 2.0 where we match college-bound high school students with mentors to navigate the world of college applications or help them prepare for the SAT.

Have you seen the impact that the organization’s work is having on the children in Utah?

LS: I have been fortunate to see the direct impact that we’re having in the community. Last summer I attended the graduation ceremony for BBBSU. I estimate that 90% of those young adults who were graduating out of the program were heading to college, and that made a big impression on me. These are high-risk children, many who come from low-income families, who simply need some additional support to get them headed in the right direction.

What is your view of the board placement program and Cambia’s support of your time with BBBSU?

LS: I’m very impressed with the board placement program. Cambia seems to really care about serving the community and they put their money where their mouth is. They provide the funding we can use to support the organizations we serve, allow us to take time away from work to volunteer, and they provide support to its board members so they can be successful.

For more information about the Executive Board Placement program, please contact Alison Arella at (503) 414-7849 or via email at alison.arella@cambiahealth.com.