AT&T Corporate Community Impact Award
Spotlight on Sheila Meyers: donating life-saving blood
This year, we launched the Community Impact Award to recognize employees who make a positive impact in their world. We received hundreds of nominations and stories of employees who live our value to make a difference. Our employees voted for the story that resonated with them most. We’re pleased to introduce you to the AT&T Corporate Community Impact Award winner.
Sheila Meyers’ cousin was diagnosed with leukemia when Sheila was in high school. Throughout treatment, blood transfusions kept her cousin alive until the cancer went into remission. That’s when Sheila started donating blood.
During the birth of her first child, Shelia was the beneficiary of a plasma donation which gave doctors time to save Sheila's life and her ability to have more children. That’s when Shelia decided to do even more.
To make it easier for others to donate blood and help save lives like hers and her cousin’s, Shelia works with a team of volunteers and the New Jersey Blood Services to run blood drives at the AT&T office in Bedminster, NJ. In addition to setting up the drives, Shelia and her team of volunteers make the drives enjoyable and entertaining for their colleagues. They provide refreshments and baked goodies to help stabilize blood sugar and fluid levels after donating. The refreshments often follow a theme, for instance shark-related food in the summer and typical tailgate fare in the Fall. People will stop Sheila in the hallways to ask what food will be at the next drive. Some of Shelia’s colleagues also donate raffle prizes for their fellow donors, such as tickets to professional sports games. “Pint Clubs” track life-to-date donations with top donors belonging to the 100+ Pints Club. Friendly competitions develop as donors give more blood and move up in the clubs. Shelia is quick to recognize her colleagues and fellow volunteers who help make the drives successful. “It’s really created a sense of community and fun in the office,” Sheila remarked.
The team of volunteers hosts a blood drive every other month so people can donate the maximum amount of blood each year (healthy donors may safely donate every 56 days). Since blood is perishable, frequent donations help hospitals and other organizations maintain their supply for the unexpected – from natural disasters to everyday incidents that require transfusions.
Together, employees in the AT&T Bedminster office have donated about 600 to 700 units of blood annually, impacting around 2,000 families each year. “You never know – the one time you donate could be the one time it’s really needed, and you save someone’s life,” Sheila said. “I encourage everyone to consider donating blood and help families like mine.”