Campbell’s Recognizes Camden Organizations For Improving Lives

Pictured are Kate Barrett, Senior Manager – Community Affairs, Campbell Soup Company; Pilar Hogan Closkey, Executive Director, St. Joseph’s Carpenter Society; Justin Spencer-Linzie, Senior Director of Community Youth Programs, Greater Philadelphia YMCA; Kim Fortunato, Director of Community Affairs, Campbell Soup Company and President, Campbell Soup Foundation; Camden Mayor Frank Moran; Wilbert Mitchell, Executive Director, Respond, Inc.; Tricia Yeo, Senior Manager of Health and Wellnes, Food Bank of South Jersey; Elsa Candelario, Executive Director, Hispanic Family Center of Southern New Jersey; and Amanda Bauman, Senior Manager – Community Affairs, Campbell Soup Company. Photo credit: Business Wire.

CAMDEN, N.J.– Campbell Soup Company and the Campbell Soup Foundation recognized the efforts of organizations that have made a significant impact in the Camden community recently. 

At the foundation’s 15th networking breakfast, which was attended by more than 100 community leaders, five local organizations received awards totaling $5,500.

“Campbell’s commitment is evident now more than ever as they celebrate 150 years here in Camden,” Camden Mayor Frank Moran said at the event. “Campbell has been a strong community stakeholder and, moreover, a conscious corporate partner who cares for the most vulnerable living within our community. Whether it is supporting civic events or partnering with local organizations through their Healthy Communities initiative aimed at promoting healthy eating, the Camden community remains a priority. I congratulate the award recipients who embody the values which Campbell has exhibited over the past 150 years.”

Chris Foley, President of Campbell’s Meals & Beverages Division, talked about the importance of community and praised those who work to make the community a better place.

“Our people and the great pride we have in our company, our brands and our community are key ingredients of our success,” Foley said.  “We’re honored to celebrate and recognize these organizations who are so committed to making Camden a better place for everyone.”

The Foundation recognized four local organizations with the Campbell Values Award, each receiving a $1,000 grant for their organization.  They also presented a special Camden Legacy Award to recognize a community organization that has had a long-lasting impact on the community which included $1,500 for that organization.

The individual and organization awards were as follows:

Do Right and Be Real Award: Tricia Yeo of the Food Bank of South Jersey, was recognized for her efforts to ensure that Camden’s residents have access to healthy food and have the education and cooking skills necessary to enjoy it. She was also celebrated for her leadership of the Camden Youth Advisory Council, which enables Camden high schoolers to use their voice to bring positive change to their city.

Dare to Disrupt Award: Pilar Hogan Closkey was recognized for her leadership of Saint Joseph’s Carpenter Society. Focusing on housing as the core of the community, she has launched innovative housing programs and complementary services that have resulted in over 1,000 homes being built for Camden families and another 450 homes being repaired.

Seek the Power of Different Award: Justin Spencer-Linzie of the Greater Philadelphia YMCA was recognized for his leadership of community recreation programs in Camden, particularly Soccer for Success, an after-school soccer program offered free-of-charge. Spencer-Linzie and his team expanded this program throughout the city by incorporating community feedback and modeling best practices from national partner, US Soccer Foundation.

Own it Like a Founder Award: Elsa Candelario of the Hispanic Family Center of Southern New Jersey was recognized for her leadership and dedication to the mission of the organization, ensuring it is rooted in the community it serves and takes a holistic approach to meet families’ needs.

Camden Legacy Award: Wilbert Mitchell accepted the award on behalf of Respond, Inc., which was selected based on nominations from other community partners. The organization was recognized for its unwavering commitment to Camden and its seamless integration into the community, serving residents from childhood through adulthood, and ensuring neighborhoods are safe and nurtured.

“Campbell has been a proud member of the Camden community since our founding in 1869,” Kim Fortunato, President of the Campbell Soup Foundation, said. “For 150 years, we’ve been committed to partnering with local organizations in Camden and other Campbell hometowns to improve the communities where our employees live and work.”

Over the past 10 years, Campbell has provided nearly $30 million to support the Camden community. In 2010, Campbell committed $10 million over 10 years to measurably improve the health of young people in Camden via the Campbell’s Healthy Communities program, which has since been extended to other Campbell communities.