Chairman Gerald Hassell accepts Distinction in Corporate Service Award on behalf of the company
In recognition of the company’s “special commitment and deep concern for the common good beyond the bottom line,” the 9/11 Memorial and Museum presented BNY Mellon with its Distinction in Corporate Service Award at its 10th-annual benefit dinner September 6.
BNY Mellon is a founding donor of the 9/11 Memorial and Museum, but while the award acknowledges that contribution, it also highlights the company’s global, ongoing philanthropic efforts.
“The 9/11 Memorial and Museum ensures we never forget those we lost, including three of our own employees,” said BNY Mellon Chairman Gerald Hassell. “It also captures the tremendous spirit of the first responders and community members who proved that no one could take away our humanity.”
At the time of the terrorist attacks, 8,300 BNY Mellon employees worked out of three locations abutting the World Trade Center site. Telecommunications were disrupted throughout Lower Manhattan, complicating the company’s ability to restore business functions.
“In the days and months after 9/11, our employees made a difference by pulling together and working long hours at our contingency sites to revive the badly broken infrastructure and tend to clients, all while processing the emotional devastation and disbelief,” recalls Jean Wynn, Head of Corporate Banking and Public Finance at BNY Mellon. “It was truly BNY Mellon at its finest and I still get very emotional about it.”
Except for a brief period in 1799 when the company was forced to relocate to Greenwich Village to escape an outbreak of yellow fever, New York’s financial district has been BNY Mellon’s home. After 9/11, the company donated generously to relief agencies and participated in the Rebuild New York program, dedicating a Small Business Recovery Center to aid businesses directly affected by the attacks.
From its founding in a Lower Manhattan coffee house in 1784, BNY Mellon has been invested in the wellbeing of its communities. In the early days, the bank provided necessary support for the growth and development of New York and, ultimately, a young nation. Today that community support extends around the globe, with employees volunteering 143,000 hours to thousands of charities in 2016.
“Our program is distinct because we let employees choose any eligible charity they want to support and provide a corporate match for both volunteer time and fundraising efforts,” explained Daisey Holmes, BNY Mellon’s Chief Operating Officer of Global Philanthropy.
This commitment to community partnership helps people realize their full potential by addressing economic, social and technological challenges. It’s a spirit present since BNY Mellon’s founding and one that has kept the company closely tied to New York, but its impact is felt worldwide.
“All of the great attributes you associate with New York – the energy, the drive for excellence – that’s all in our DNA,” said Hassell. “You can’t separate BNY Mellon from NYC.”