Each year, corporate teams and sponsors band together for AIDS Run & Walk Chicago to raise awareness and funds for HIV services across Chicagoland and Illinois. One of these generous partners is Quest Diagnostics, which provides clinical laboratory services across the country. We spoke to Regional Marketing Director Joe Huber on how their involvement with AIDS Run & Walk Chicago allows them to give back to the community, increase employee engagement, and improve Quest’s visibility as a diverse and inclusive company through their involvement.
In 2016, Quest employees came out in droves to walk and run for HIV awareness, despite the stormy weather. The benefits of their involvement were immediately clear to Huber, who witnessed staff interactions with the community and as people recognized Quest Diagnostics’ work and leadership in the field. After the day was done, employees were already looking forward to being involved again and left with memories of an amazing day as a team. Huber also witnessed the importance of giving back to the community and being recognized as a company that gives back, both by their employees and the public.
“It’s really about our participation and giving back to the local community,” he says. “We live here and we’re part of it; we want to give back to communities that work with us.”
But beyond employee connection and visibility, many employees have a special connection to HIV; Quest Diagnostics processes HIV test results at their lab. Although tests are anonymous, staff members understand the impact these results will have on an individual’s life. This awareness creates an intimacy and personal connection to the cause for staff who recognize the importance of their work and its impact on the lives and health of those living with and vulnerable to HIV.
“While HIV was once basically a death sentence, the testing that we do can let people know earlier, and also guide the physician for appropriate treatment immediately,” Huber explains. “It’s near and dear to the hearts of so many people in the laboratory; their involvement is very personal.”
Huber and the team at Quest have also been impressed by AFC’s impact and are confident that their sponsorship dollars and time have an immediate effect for the HIV community in Illinois.
“AIDS Run & Walk Chicago is a good investment of not only our sponsorship dollars but our time. Every dollar that comes to them is spent back in the community for a very good cause,” Huber explains.
In the future, Quest Diagnostics is looking forward to continuing their involvement with AIDS Run & Walk Chicago to benefit those living with and vulnerable to HIV, their employees, and their status as a company that cares about the communities they serve.