At Williams, our work provides the energy that helps people take hot showers, heat, and cool their homes, cook family dinners, and power our lives.
But we know our responsibility goes far beyond that, and we realize our critical role as good partners and neighbors within our communities. That’s why we’ve become an integral part of the areas where we work — because we know that supporting our neighbors isn’t a burden, it’s a privilege.
Our company was founded in 1908, and every day since, we’ve worked tirelessly to improve the places we call home. The way we see it, our efforts encompass four key areas that will enhance our future: investing in our communities, being environmental stewards, improving education, and valuing diversity.
Walking the walk
We take our philanthropic work very seriously, and our efforts range from employee volunteerism to charitable giving and in-kind donations. We’re proud to say that in 2021 alone, Williams donated more than $12 million to more than 2,000 organizations across 48 states.
We also continued our longstanding support of more than 150 United Way chapters and raised nearly $5 million across the country. In our headquarter city, we raised more than $1 million for the Tulsa Area United Way for the thirty-first consecutive year. We combine these investments with a deep respect for people who put their lives on the line every day — America’s first responders. In 2021, we donated more than half a million dollars to more than 400 first responder groups throughout our operating areas, including departments where our employees volunteer as firefighters.
We’re a multi-year supporter of the Ground Zero Emergency Training Center in Tuttle, Oklahoma, where search and rescue canine teams are trained. Williams also provided grants that allowed Pennsylvania’s Fairmount Township to purchase a firefighting brush truck and West Virginia’s Brook County EMS to buy medical supplies, to name a few.
We know that this work takes more than money — it also takes time. Williams employees recorded more than 23,000 volunteer hours in 2021, serving as advocates, youth mentors, coaches, nonprofit board members, and volunteer firefighters in neighborhoods across the country. And in April 2022, we launched our inaugural Williams Volunteer Week, with nearly 1,000 Williams employees donating 6,637 hours of work across 18 states. Our giving also extended to donating critical materials for groups in need, such as computers and laptops to schools and printing services for nonprofit organizations.
Making a better world
While we work to improve living standards today, we’re also creating a healthier, more sustainable environment for future generations. We incorporate environmental stewardship into every step of our decision-making — across the United States, we’ve led environmentally oriented programs that include support of conservation districts, wildlife rehabilitation efforts, and youth education.
For instance, we partnered with Ducks Unlimited to restore critical habitat for migrating birds passing through the McPherson Valley Wetlands in Kansas. We also provided funding to New York Harbor School, so students could gain exposure to maritime field and environmental stewardship work. And with a grant from Williams, the Arbor Day Foundation planted more than 35,000 trees in forests in Alabama, North Carolina, and Virginia.
Teaching the next generation
Today’s students are the ones who will be working at our facilities and helping to provide clean energy for people all over the country. So we work closely with local schools to prepare the next generation of employees in subjects including science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields.
We’re a multi-year sponsor of a Pennsylvania technical college, where students get a hands-on education operating equipment they’d use in the energy industry. We also funded a new building for The Pencil Box, a nonprofit serving over 500 Tulsa County teachers.
Sequent Energy Management, a Williams company, hosts students from Houston’s Cristo Rey Jesuit College Preparatory School, where students spend one day each week for the entire school year in a work-study program at our office to build skills for college — and beyond.
Opening doors for all
We recognize a direct link between sustainable business operations, responsible corporate stewardship, and long-term financial success. That’s why our Diversity & Inclusion Council focuses on creating an inclusive workforce and ensuring that our development programs encourage leadership traits that help us improve our inclusive culture. Along those lines, we support career development and student workforce preparation at North Carolina A&T State University, a historically black university in Greensboro.
As we look back at the past year and ahead to the rest of 2022, we know that the need in our communities is great. That’s why we stayed true to our mission to remain active, involved, and passionate community leaders, helping to provide energy for millions while also creating a more sustainable, more inclusive, and — in the end — a better world.