Posts tagged with "10 to 1 Public Relations"

Community created by Mina Tocalini at 360 Magazine used by 360 Magazine

Plexus Worldwide’s Global Giving Day

Employees, Brand Ambassadors, and Customers volunteered to combat food insecurity on September 22. Plexus Worldwide (Plexus®), a leading direct-selling health and wellness company, motivated people around the world to step up and volunteer during the Plexus Global Giving Day, held on September 22. Brand Ambassadors, Customers, and employees in five countries were encouraged to support local nonprofits that provide assistance to families affected by hunger.

“Plexus cares deeply about children and families in all the communities we serve worldwide, so we mobilized our teams and encouraged our Brand Ambassadors to join forces with customers and serve together as a united community. We are so appreciative to everyone who took time out of their busy day to contribute to those in need. The outpouring of support gives me tremendous pride because it reflects a shared sense of responsibility.” said Tarl Robinson, Plexus CEO and Founder.

In addition, Plexus donated 15,000 USD to food banks in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, and the United States where Global Giving Day participants volunteered.  At the corporate headquarters in Scottsdale, over 140 employees, including company leaders and the executive team, packed food boxes and distributed food at St. Mary’s Food Bank in Phoenix.  Collectively, Scottsdale team members volunteered 580 hours to St. Mary’s Food Bank the week of September 20. This annual Week of Service event is something team members look forward to as yet another way to promote a One Plexus spirit.

“In our mission to ignite Hope, Health, and Happiness, we support all efforts to combat food insecurity, so families don’t have to choose between paying the electric bill and putting food on the table,” said Alec Clark, President, and Founder. “Making a difference is ingrained in our culture because we share a commitment to help those in need through financial contributions, volunteer efforts, and in-kind donations to community nonprofits that give families a helping hand during difficult times.”

Plexus encourages a culture of giving, providing 16 hours of paid volunteer time to every team member. But many employees give far more of their time and participate in donation drives that support a variety of nonprofits and community groups. 360 Magazine is proud to be associated with brands that volunteer worldwide to help the community.

AVANA Employees Volunteer at Foodbank

AVANA Companies’ Employees Volunteer for Day of Service at St. Mary’s Foodbank

Company celebrates making Inc. 5000 List by giving back

AVANA Companies, a comprehensive lending and asset management platform since 2002, is proud to announce it has helped to feed more than 400 families after a day of service at St. Mary’s Food Bank in Phoenix. Company employees decided to serve the community as a way to celebrate its selection for the 2021 Inc. 5000 List of America’s Fastest Growing Private Companies.

The list represents a unique look at the most successful companies within the American economy’s most dynamic segment—its independent small businesses.

AVANA means preserver and it has always been our mission to help to foster community involvement where we live and work and we are so proud that the members of our team share these values, says CEO Sundip Patel.  Service is the foundation of our company culture, so it only makes sense to celebrate by helping others.

About 20 AVANA employees, some from out of town, participated in the day of volunteering. They worked together to fill food boxes which will be distributed to needy families.

AVANA Companies collaborates with a diverse group of skilled professionals to foster its mission to build and preserve communities through Commercial Real Estate (CRE) and Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) lending opportunities. For nearly 20 years, AVANA has promoted local ESG (Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance) investment opportunities by contributing to the social good and educating potential investors about alternative investments that have a social and environmental impact. Through AVANA’s Family of Companies, it provides capital to grow and create jobs, stimulate economic growth, and finance diverse renewable energy projects through its strong portfolio of lending and investment products. 

About AVANA Companies

The AVANA Family of Companies (AVANA) is dedicated to stimulating local economies and contributing to clean energy development across the United States. Founded in 2002 by brothers Sundip and Sanat Patel, it is a family of ESG lending and investment platforms that serve entrepreneurs and investors. AVANA’s ESG lending is done through AVANA Capital, LendThrive™,and Extensia Financial and ESG investments through AVANA Fund and EqualSeatTM. The company’s goal is to empower American small businesses by providing ESG focused loans and investment opportunities that are impactful, socially driven and preserve wealth. AVANA is headquartered in Arizona and serves small business owners and investors across the United States and globally. AVANA invests in the communities it serves, creating jobs, stimulating economic growth, and contributing to sustainable projects. AVANA has recently been named to the 2021 Inc. 5000 List of America’s Fastest Growing Private Companies. AVANA Capital, LLC is licensed in California under DBO license number 603K752 and in Arizona under CBK license number 0921662. To learn more, visit their website or follow on AVANA Companies on LinkedIn.

Analysis for use by 360 Magazine

Health and Wellness Company Plexus Contributes Greatly to the Economy

A new independent study by the L. Seidman Research Institute at Arizona State University shows Plexus Worldwide (Plexus®), a leading health and wellness company, had an estimated $128.5 million gross domestic product (GDP) economic impact in Arizona and more than $1.1 billion GDP impact on the U.S. economy in 2020. The study analyzed the scope and scale of Plexus’ economic impact and investment across the U.S., Canada, Australia, and Mexico.

“The purpose of this study was to measure the economic impact of Plexus’ U.S. operations in the state of Arizona and in each market where the company does business including Canada, Mexico, Australia, and New Zealand in 2020,” said Dennis Hoffman, Director of the L. William Seidman Research Institute at the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University. “Our findings show the tremendous impact that Plexus has had, including a $1.15 billion economic impact on the global GDP and more than $128.5 million economic impact in the local Arizona community.”

Highlights of the 2020 economic impact study include:

  • $1.15 billion GDP impact on the global economy
  • $1.1 billion GDP impact on the U.S. economy
  • $128.5 million GDP impact on the state of Arizona
  • $791.6 million in U.S. labor income
  • 8,593 U.S. jobs supported
  • $26.8 million in sales tax revenues to state and local governments, responsible for $59.1 million GDP, 619 jobs, and $41.9 million labor income in the U.S. economy.

“Everyday Arizonans deserve opportunities to build better lives for themselves and their families. As Arizona’s senior senator, I’ll continue supporting economic opportunities helping Arizonans grow and thrive in their own direction. I look forward to working with our business leaders and independent business owners as we continue to expand jobs and fuel economic recovery,” said Senator Kyrsten Sinema.

Plexus is dedicated to changing lives and promoting health, wellness, and success. “Our products, team members, and Ambassadors are the foundation of these goals, which is why we are committed to the highest standards of quality,” said Tarl Robinson, CEO and Founder of Plexus. “Thanks to our hardworking leaders and employees, and in a year like no other, Plexus was able to grow and have a real impact on economies at the local, national, and global communities where we operate.”

This study demonstrates that Plexus is a major economic driver, contributing millions to the U.S. economy, including $95 million in labor income statewide. “In 2020 alone, Plexus supported more than 9,000 jobs worldwide, with a total of $821.6 million in total earnings for our employees and hundreds of thousands of Ambassadors, who serve as independent business owners,” said Kim Drabik, Senior Director of Corporate Affairs at Plexus.*

Plexus, a privately held company was established 13-years ago in Arizona, has more than 400 employees at its Scottsdale headquarters, which consists of a 73,000 square foot office building and 28,000 square foot warehouse. In 2020, Plexus welcomed more the 462,000 new Ambassadors and customers, growing the number of Ambassadors receiving monthly income by 23%. 

About Plexus Worldwide

Plexus Worldwide, LLC, is a leading health and happiness company featuring health and wellness products that enable people to improve their lives and well-being. With hundreds of thousands of independent business owners (“Ambassadors”) worldwide, Plexus is among the top 30 largest direct sales companies globally according to Direct Selling News. The combination of Plexus products and opportunities help individuals to meet their health-wellness and financial goals.

Sports by Allison Christensen for 360 Magazine

Super Bowl STEM Activities

With millions of families tuning into Super Bowl LV to see if Tom Brady will win another championship, there is also a great opportunity to introduce some fun activities that will keep kids learning and active.

Youth sports and learning experts at Skyhawks Sports Academy and STEM Sports® recommend two fun activities to get children learning and active for Super Bowl weekend. The activities are easy to learn and use objects found in most households. Bonus–there may or may not be a STEM education hidden in these activities, so it is a win-win.

  • Farthest Football Throw: We all know a key skill for a quarterback is to throw the football accurately and for distance, but even the pros fall short or overthrow the ball. So, grab a football and measuring tape and start a fun competition to see which family member can throw the ball the farthest. Have each person try it 3 times and record the results. This activity will also teach your children math skills as they calculate the distance between the farthest and the shortest throws.
  • Glove Grip Test: Notice how many football players wear gloves during the game? It’s not because they’re cold, it’s because the gloves give them a better grip while catching and passing the ball. To test it out, gather different types of gloves you may find around the house – sports gloves, boxing gloves, leather gloves, mittens, dish cleaning gloves, or even disposable gloves. Try passing the football and catching it from different distances and with different gloves to notice the difference in grip and accuracy when throwing and catching.

With football being such a popular sport, these easy and fun activities provide the perfect opportunity to introduce kids to science and math concepts, as well as get them away from their screens and moving around. Consider spending a commercial break doing one of these activities, or pivoting to any of these activities if things aren’t going well for your team.

For children interested in taking STEM learning to the next level, Skyhawks and STEM Sports® offer in-person and virtual programs using sports as the real-life application to teach science, technology, engineering, and math skills. Skyhawks also offers Flag Football camps for children between the ages of 5 and 12 and in a variety of formats in communities across the country. Current program offerings continue to follow proven COVID-19 protocols per state and local guidelines. Winter programming is currently underway, and more information, schedules, and registration are available on the Skyhawks’ website.

About Skyhawks Sports Academy

Skyhawks Sports Academy is a youth sports camp organization based in Spokane, Washington. Skyhawks was founded in Spokane in 1979 as a soccer program for children to learn sports in a fun, safe and non-competitive environment. Skyhawks currently offers programs in more than 11 different sports including Soccer, Basketball, Flag Football, Baseball, Multi-Sport, Tennis, Mini-Hawk, Lacrosse, Golf, Volleyball, Cheerleading, and Track & Field for children ages 4-14 across North America. The format of our programs includes traditional weeklong summer day camps, year-round after-school programs, sports leagues, and clinics. For more information, visit their website.

About STEM Sports®

STEM Sports® provides turnkey K-8 supplemental curricula that use various sports as the real-life application to teach science, technology, engineering, and math skills in classrooms, after-school programs, and camps. Our double-play combination of physical activity and cognitive thinking provides a comprehensive, inquiry-based educational experience and a solution for crucial STEM literacy for students. As a result, students develop critical thinking, collaboration, creative problem-solving, and leadership skills that can be applied throughout their education and future careers.

Aligned with Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), Common Core State Standards (CCSS), and National Standards for K-12 Physical Education, our curricula will cultivate and promote participants’ STEM engagement and retention. STEM Sports® provides all of the necessary and relevant sports equipment along with the entire list of supplies called for in the teacher/administer manual and all of the items have a long-lasting shelf life. Learn more on their website.

Kaelen Felix illustrates Ritchie Torres for 360 Magazine

TRAILBLAZER: CONGRESSMAN RITCHIE TORRES

By Elle Grant

January 3rd marked the commencement of the 117th Congress and the swearing of its newest members. For many, it marked the beginning of a new dawn. One that will be followed by the inauguration of TIME’s People of the Year, President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. They will replace President Trump on Inauguration Day on January 20th. Yet several other remarkable individuals were elected this year and sworn in a bit earlier, solidifying the 117th Congress as the most diverse in American history. One of these representatives is a freshly elected Ritchie Torres, a 32-year-old politician serving the 15th congressional district in the Bronx, New York. Torres is the first openly gay Afro-Latino man elected to Congress, and one of two gay Black men that will serve in the 117th Congress, a distinction he shares with fellow New Yorker Mondaire Jones. 360 Magazine had the opportunity to sit down with Torres to discuss the story of his life, the issues he considers vital, as well as pick his brain for his thoughts on current events.

“I am a product of the Bronx,” Torres says of his childhood, “I spent most of my life in poverty.” Ritchie Torres was raised by a single mother, one of three children, in the Throggs Neck neighborhood of the East Bronx. He recalls the difficulty his mother had raising a family on minimum wage in the 1990s, as well as the awful conditions of the public housing he grew up in. Torres recollects these experiences with the soft yet fluid countenance that marked his speech throughout 360’s conversation with him. He floats between topics and memories with ease.

He recalls, with a rich sense of irony, the construction of Trump Golf Links as a child. “My life is something of a metaphor. I grew up right across the street of what became Trump golf course and actually something funny, is when the golf course was undergoing construction, it unleashed a skunk infestation. So, I often tell people I’ve been smelling the stench of Donald Trump long before he became President.” His own situation, compared with the government subsidized construction of the Trump Golf Links, deeply unsettled Torres’ image of society. He says collectively of his youth, “Those experiences shape not only who I am as a person, but as a public official.”

Such injustices prompted Torres to seek to become “The change that you wish the see in the world,” he says, quoting Mahatma Gandhi. He named public figures such as Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, Lyndon Johnson, Ted Kennedy as role models. He got his start as a housing organizer and eventually took the leap of faith to run for public office, becoming New York’s youngest elected city official at age 25. He had “No ties to the machine. No ties to the dynasties of Bronx politics, but I was young and energetic. I knocked on thousands of doors,” he claims that kind of face-to-face contact won him that election. Torres then became the first LGBTQ+ official elected from the Bronx.

“I think it has several implications,” he says when asked what this early accomplishment meant to him. “I mean, first, we are all products of our identities and our lived experiences. Right? Who we are as people shapes what we do as policy makers. It is important to have LGBTQ policy makers in the room where decisions are being made. A wise person once said, ‘If you don’t have a seat at the table, then you are probably on the menu.’” Referring to his 2020 election win, he says “My election means that LGBTQ people of color, in particular, will have a seat at one of the most powerful tables, the United States Congress.” He calls the reality of his election both empowering and normalizing. “I am a symbol of possibility.”

“I met Mondaire for the first time four years ago,” Torres says of Mondaire Jones, U.S. representative of New York’s 17th congressional district. “I remember when I met him for the first time, we had a conversation about the lack of LGBTQ representation of color in New York state politics. And I never imagined that four years later, he and I would become the first openly LGBTQ Black members of United States Congress.”

Congressmen Torres recognizes that his path, though marked with accomplishments, has not been one of only highs. Torres stands apart as a public official on the national stage who is open about the lows of his life and his struggles with mental health. When asked why he chooses to be so transparent, he says “I felt a deep sense of obligation to speak openly about my own struggles with depression in order to break the silence and shame and stigma that surrounds mental health.” He seeks to evolve, not perpetuate, the current ideas surrounding mental health. He hopes to show that “there is a way forward” out of difficult moments, which for him were struggles with substance abuse, the loss of a friend, and moments when he considered taking his own life. But seven years later, Torres was elected to city council. “I would not be alive today, much less a member of the United States Congress, were it not for mental health care which saved my life.” He aspires to send a message that “Recovery is possible. You can take an antidepressant, as I do every day, and find normalcy and stability” and achieve feats like being elected to Congress.

The 117th Congress is slated to be the most diverse in history. Torres says of this reality, “I think American is increasingly becoming a multi-racial, multi-ethnic inclusive democracy. We are witnessing the collapse of politics as an old voice network. I am part of a new generation of young leaders every bit as diverse as America itself. Congress is becoming what it always should have been, a miniaturization of America itself.”

Torres acknowledges the year 2020, monumental in many ways, as harrowing for his Bronx community. “COVID-19 has been a catastrophe for the city and the country, and the South Bronx has been the epicenter of COVID-19. The South Bronx had the highest rate of COVID-19 morbidity and mortality during the peak of the pandemic. And just as destructive as COVID-19 itself were the deeper inequalities that were brought to light.” He argued that the coronavirus exposed the deeper health inequalities, racial inequalities, and class inequalities laid bare by the pandemic.

These issues are at the forefront of Torres’ mind in thinking of his work as a legislator. When asked what he saw as the first step to rectifying the rampant racial injustice in the United States, he answered “the first thing is to bring greater accountability to policing in America,” an argument familiar to many Americans following the deaths of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and George Floyd and their ensuing protests. As the Black Lives Matter movement swept the nation with greater momentum than ever before, cries for justice and defunding the police became common across the country’s cities. “Where there is no accountability, there will never be an end to police brutality” Torres says, being especially critical of qualified immunity in the United States.

Torres heads to Congress as a man with a mission regarding many issues. He himself declares “My great passion is affordable housing,” reflecting a long journey working continually in the housing sphere. He seeks to secure far greater funding for public housing in New York City and to expand the Section 8 program. The Section 8 program, also known as the Housing Choice Voucher program, created by an act in 1978, provides assistance to eligible low- and moderate-income families to rent housing in the private market. Torres says, “For me the surest way to stimulate the economy is to put money in the pockets of struggling families.” In order to do that, he believes the solution is an expanded child tax credit, which he describes as the single largest tax expenditure in America, yet he finds fault with a system that is “so regressive that it excludes a third of American families. Particularly the poorest families in America.” Torres’ passion shines through when he discusses the subject, detailing how this solution could slash childhood poverty by 40% in the span of the year. He calls its potential an absolute “game changer.”

Without question, affordable housing and tax reform are the first issues Torres hopes to address after being sworn in to the 117th Congress on January 3rd, 2020. “For me, the central mission of my life is to fight poverty in America. Racially constructed poverty in America. The South Bronx is said to be the poorest district in America and if we can make progressive policies work in the South Bronx, we can make them work anywhere.”

360 Magazine also had the opportunity to discuss a variety of current issues with Congressman Torres, one of which being the then impending Senate run-offs in Georgia. Following races too close to call in November 2020, Republican incumbent David Perdue is facing a challenge from Democrat Jon Ossoff. Additionally, GOP appointee Kelly Loeffler is defending her seat against Democrat Reverend Raphael Warnock. The election is vital because it will determine which party will control the Senate. “The stakes are supremely important,” Torres says of Georgia. “As long as Mitch McConnell refuses to bring critical bills to the floor for a vote, there is a limit to what we can accomplish. For me, Mitch McConnell is the single greatest obstruction on the path to progress. Winning those two seats in Georgia are essential.”

Regarding the impending mayoral race in his home of New York City, as well as early polls that display former Presidential candidate Andrew Yang as the frontrunner, Torres is coy. “The mayor’s race is wide open. Anyone who claims to have it figured out is lying.” He goes on to affirm “It is full of more than one credible candidate.”

“To be clear, I never announced that I wasn’t going to be in the squad.” Torres says, referring to ‘The Squad’ of United States Congress, composed of Congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a fellow New Yorker, Ayanna Pressley, Ilhan Omar, and Rashida Tlaib. With new young progressive politicians like Torres joining the fray, claims of expanding membership are common. Torres, along with the aforementioned Mondaire Jones, as well as Congresswoman Cori Bush, Congresswoman Marie Newman, and Congressman Jamaal Brown are commonly referred to as impending members.

Instead, Torres clarifies, “I would never issue an announcement that I would not be a part of something. That would be an odd thing to do. Whenever I’m asked about the squad, I simply state that I’m my own person and I prefer to be judged on the basis of my own story and my own record, on my own terms.” He goes on to assert he is willing to work with “anyone and everyone in the service of delivering to the people of the South Bronx. That is my highest priority.” Torres is clear in this declaration that he is willing to work with more conservative members of his own party or the Republican party in hopes of progress.

On a future in politics, Torres affirmed his intent to serve the people in the moment and to “let the dice fall where they may” regarding the future. When asked what wisdom he would impart to a younger generation, Congressman Torres says “We are all only as strong as the support we have in our lives and be grateful for the supporters you have. The friends and family. I would not be here today if not for the friendship of people who believed in me more than I believed in myself. Know who those people are and value them and be grateful for them.”

Update as of 1/14/21, Congressman Ritchie Torres has formally endorsed former presidential candidate Andrew Yang for mayor of New York City. This comes just a day after Andrew Yang announced his campaign in a video titled ‘Why I’m Running,’ which features Torres in it.

SAMI-Aid Offers Free Appointment to Those Affected by Wildfires

California telehealth company wants to ensure people’s health needs are met during historic wildfire crisis

SAMI-Aid, a patient-focused telemedicine platform and healthcare concierge company, announced that it is offering free telehealth appointments to those who have been affected by the wildfires raging across the state of California and other western states. The California-based company saw an opportunity to use its platform to help those who have been affected by the fires.

“As a San Jose-based company, we’ve seen firsthand how this summer’s wildfire season has affected Californians in the Bay Area and across the state,” said Bijan Farhangui, SAMI-Aid Founder and CEO. “Whether you’ve been displaced by the wildfires or aren’t able to visit your doctor’s office due to the poor air quality, we realized we could do something to help ensure people’s health needs were met during this difficult time.”

According to the California Air Resources Board, particulate matter is the largest health concern relating to wildfires. Particles from wildfire smoke can be inhaled into different parts of the lung, potentially resulting in negative lung and heart health effects. Those who suffer from respiratory issues or illnesses have been advised to remain indoors as much as possible while particulate matter from the wildfires remains a concern.

“Patients in need of prescriptions, medical advice, or regular behavioral health consultations should not have to sacrifice their health and wellbeing because of the wildfires,” added Farhangui. “Our telemedicine platform can help Californians get the health services they need in a safe and easy way.”

Those who have been affected by the California wildfires can call SAMI-Aid at 844-726-4243 to redeem the code for a free consultation through their telehealth platform. SAMI-Aid offers on-demand access to medical professionals of a variety of specialties including general physicians as well as mental and behavioral health specialists. SAMI-Aid also recently launched its new at-home COVID-19 testing program where patients can confirm their COVID-19 status from the safety and convenience of their own home. More information is available at samiaid.com.

About SAMI-Aid:

Founded in 2014, SAMI-Aid is an online healthcare concierge platform that features a searchable medical procedure pricing database, a dedicated call center for patient support, and 24/7 access to telemedicine doctors and nurses. Its platform is secure, HIPAA-compliant, user-friendly, and mobile-friendly, offering members 24/7 access to doctors and nurses, and exclusive medical pricing information which helps them save money on care. Based in San Jose, California, SAMI-Aid serves the entire US. The acronym SAMI stands for Smart Affordable Medical Information. For more information, visit samiaid.com.