inline peter at glfb 2015 fundraiser

PSC President Peter Pratt enjoys the 2014 Greater Lansing Food Bank fundraiser in East Lansing along with Colleen McNamara (left) and Leslie Brogan. Pratt is a longtime member of the food bank’s Board of Directors (PSC photo/Donna Van Natter)

As a firm with decades of experience in researching, designing, and implementing best practices, it should be no surprise that Public Sector Consultants approaches its charitable giving with well-defined goals that maximize the benefits for key communities.

PSC has long been an active corporate citizen in the nonprofit world, backing causes as varied as the Capital Area Humane Society to the Lansing Symphony to End Violent Encounters (EVE),  a group that provides shelter and supportive services to victims of domestic violence. Other organizations that have been supported by PSC include the Michigan Recycling Coalition, YMCA of Lansing, and Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) So far in 2014, the firm has contributed to 13 organizations, including its ongoing support of the Michigan Political Leadership Program, which trains and inspires Michigan’s next generation of public policy leaders.

Still, at PSC, the thinking and pursuit of moving Michigan forward never stops. Earlier this year, the firm developed a formalized policy and process for reviewing the plethora of requests that come from staff members or outside groups.

“Plenty of academic research shows a relationship between corporate charitable work and company performance,” says Selma Tucker, PSC’s director of marketing and communications and the staffer charged with developing the new policy. “And our own experience validates that relationship.”

PSC’s policy takes a request for funding through a series of questions to assess the proposal both in relation to corporate goals and to its potential effects for the community.

“Our goal with philanthropy is to be strategic in our giving to maximize the impact on key issues, such as vulnerable children and place-making,” Tucker adds.

But PSC’s contributions go beyond writing checks as the company lends, in-kind, the talent and expertise of its staff when an organization needs help with capacity, a particular project, or governance.

“Our goal with philanthropy is to be strategic in our giving to maximize the impact on key issues, such as vulnerable children and place-making,” Tucker adds.

For years, Creative Lead Donna Van Natter has served in this capacity for Scenic Michigan,  a group that works “to enhance the scenic beauty of Michigan’s communities and roadsides.”

“I manage and maintain their website. I also do some posting to their Facebook page, as requested. I help them think about ways to strengthen their organization’s identity both for current and future members,” Van Natter explains.

Donna has been working with Scenic Michigan’s website for many years and has helped us with our Facebook page since the inception of our page, about three years ago,” says Abby Dart, executive director of Scenic Michigan.

“Donna essentially restructured and revamped our website, which had been created back in the ‘stone age’ Internet and was in desperate need of a new look.  She created a lovely and easy-to-use site and updates it regularly for us.  Donna also assists us with our major fundraising event, the Waterfront Wine Festival.”

Senior Vice President Julie Metty Bennett serves on the Scenic Michigan board and explains that PSC’s assistance to the group was an obvious move.

“Scenic Michigan is committed to protecting, enhancing, and highlighting the state’s natural beauty – in other words being a good steward of the environment,” she explains. “Such environmental stewardship is a theme running through a great deal of our work via such clients as the Great Lakes Fishery Trust and the Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative. This is an example of how we can leverage our expertise to serve our community and our clients.”

PSC President Peter Pratt is a long-time member of the board of the Greater Lansing Food Bank (GLFB) and has found many ways to support their work over the years.

“PSC has always been strongly committed to supporting charitable enterprises in Lansing and across the state,” explains Pratt. “We see this as essential to our work to make Michigan better. For example, we have long been a major donor to the Greater Lansing Food Bank, giving us a way to support their work in feeding hungry children in the capital region.”

“We are so very fortunate to live in a community with caring corporate citizens such as Public Sector Consultants,” says GLFB Executive Director Joe Wald. “The support of PSC has included financial support in the form of sponsorships for the Food Bank events; numerous in-kind contributions, including the use of meeting rooms and a wonderful contribution of furniture for our offices when PSC was relocating to its current downtown offices; and, probably most significant, the time Peter Pratt commits to the mission of the GLFB as an active member of the Board of Directors and Board Executive Committee.”