When Lori McLeod, Head of Psychometrics & Executive Director, Patient-Centered Outcomes Assessment, thought it would be a nice gesture to enlist her co-workers to reach out to help two seniors celebrate the holidays in 2002, she had no idea how this simple act of kindness would grow. By 2016 more than 150 people had received over an estimated $35,000 in donated gifts and money from Lori and her colleagues at RTI-HS.
Now that the project has grown, it takes a team of people to coordinate the drive that delivers over 85 gifts each holiday season. “It is an honor to co-chair this event. Every year, there is one family where the only thing the mother asks for is cleaning supplies. That breaks my heart," said Valerie Tower who has helped co-chair the project since 2013. "Seeing how generous, kind and giving my co-workers are in helping these families each year is heartwarming and makes me so grateful that I work for such a great company,” she said. Seeing the generosity of her co-workers is part of the reason why Karen Walsh also stepped up to co-chair in 2013. “It just seems like it’s the right thing to help someone else if you have been blessed with a job and a roof over your head,” she explained.