Section 2: Committing to important causes

At Great-West Financial and Empower, our goals include helping people prepare for longer, healthier and happier retirements, so we also support programs that encourage health and wellness.

For example, through the company’s partnerships with the American Heart Association and Susan G. Komen Colorado, we helped associates take steps to reduce their health risks. We also worked to spread important health messages to the broader community.

American Heart Association

The company served as presenting sponsor of the Denver Heart Ball and Heart Walk. We also sponsored the Go Red for Women campaign and luncheon. Our support earned us the Corporate Impact Award, which recognized our efforts to impact heart disease and stroke, the number 1 and number 4 causes of death, respectively, in America.

Great-West Financial and Empower partnered with the American Heart Association to provide Teaching Gardens at two elementary schools in metro Denver. Associates joined students who learned how to plant seeds, nurture plants and harvest produce. The children also learned the value of good eating habits.

Teaching Gardens foster the belief that when you teach children about nutrition, they’ll share this information with their families, which ultimately improves the family’s overall eating habits.

Somerset, New Jersey, associates each donated $5 to participate in Wear Red Day in February. Along with other activities, the office raised almost $820 for the American Heart Association in 2014.

Deahna’s Story

Deahna Visscher, SAP implementation support analyst, knows firsthand the importance of the American Heart Association. Before her son was born, he was diagnosed with a severe heart defect. Doctors performed open-heart surgery to repair the defect just days after he was born. While her son experienced other complications and did not survive, Deahna credits the research and innovations funded by the American Heart Association for giving him a chance at life.

Now, Deahna is a team captain for the Denver Heart Walk. Her team, Grant’s Pay It Forward, walks in honor of her son and to pay it forward so others also benefit from early detection. Deahna and her team raised nearly $5,000 in 2014 by sharing their story, making and selling cake pops, and explaining the importance of the Association’s work to others.

“It is pretty cool to be a part of a company that is so aware of the importance of giving back to causes that save lives. For me, this is an important value.” – Deahna Visscher

Susan G. Komen for the Cure

We’re proud to be the founding sponsor of the Race for the Cure in Denver. Each year, Great-West Financial and Empower associates run and walk around the Pepsi Center to support the fight against breast cancer. In 2014, more than 350 associates participated in events nationwide.

Associates race for a cure nationwide

Denver, Colorado
New York, New York
Milwaukee, Wisconsin

We presented the Susan G. Komen Colorado Co-Survivor Award to Amber Ramey at the 2014 Race for the Cure. Amber was 10 years old when her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. Amber was her mother’s biggest support throughout her fight. Today, her mother is cancer-free, and Amber is a sophomore in high school. She has raised breast cancer awareness by starting her own Race for the Cure team at her school.

Kellcie’s Story

Kellcie Noble raised nearly $1,000 on her own for Race for the Cure in her Aunt Debbie’s honor.

When Kellcie Noble, a defined benefits relationship manager, joined the company in 2013, she noticed its commitment to Susan G. Komen for the Cure. After some investigation, she attended team meetings and decided to form a team in memory of her Aunt Debbie, who’d lost her fight with breast cancer a few years earlier.

Kellcie recruited 30 friends to participate in Race for the Cure. She also led a fundraising effort that brought in $980 by selling handmade coffee sleeves and scarves with the pink ribbon on them. The company matched her fundraising efforts — doubling her contribution to Komen to $1,960.

"I have never worked for a company with this kind of commitment. Great- West Financial goes above and beyond to connect employees with causes we care about. Last year, the company invited me to participate in a special event for breast cancer survivors and their families. It really hit home, and it helped me to connect with what my aunt went through.”

- Kellcie Noble