Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Letter from our President & CEO: Goodwill Provides Update on Data Security Issue

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014

September 2, 2014

Dear Goodwill® Customers:

In July, Goodwill Industries International (GII) announced that some Goodwill® member store locations may have been affected by a data security issue. These Goodwills were using a common third-party vendor for payment processing. Since then, based on a third-party investigation and work with federal law enforcement agencies, it was determined that our Goodwill stores were not impacted and our customers should feel assured that their payment card information is not affected by this issue.

The affected Goodwill members took immediate action to ensure the malware found on their third-party vendor’s systems no longer presents a threat to individuals shopping at their Goodwill stores.

Our primary concern is for the people we serve — our community, our shoppers and our donors — and we are committed to ensuring that your information is safe and secure. If you have any questions or would like more information, please call toll-free at 1-800-GOODWILL.We will be available to answer your questions 9 a.m.-9 p.m. on Saturdays; 10 a.m.-7 p.m. on Sundays; and 9 a.m.-9 p.m. on Mondays-Fridays Eastern time.


Michael Elder
President & CEO, Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont

Goodwill Announces Plans for New Goodwill Opportunity Campus

Tuesday, August 5th, 2014

Goodwill’s Bold Vision to Change Poverty and Dependence in our Region

Goodwill Opportunity Campus to serve as a catalyst for change in the workforce development industry in the Charlotte-metro area.

There has been an increase in poverty levels in our region in recent years. In fact, there are close to 160,000 Mecklenburg residents living in poverty and more than 300,000 in our region living below the poverty line. In addition, according to a Harvard study, it will be extremely hard for those in our state to move out of poverty.  Today, Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont, a leader in the workforce development industry for the region, announced its bold vision to change the trajectory of poverty and dependence in the area during a Growing Opportunity Celebration.

The celebration included the organization’s public announcement of their vision and the capital campaign to assist with building a new 160,000 square foot campus on 18-acres of land located off of Wilkinson Boulevard. This facility, the Goodwill Opportunity Campus (GOC), will provide a comprehensive collection of resources and opportunities for job training, job placement and job creation for individuals facing multiple barriers to employment. Construction will start in the beginning of 2015 with occupancy in the new building anticipated to occur in 2016.

Making the Goodwill Opportunity Campus a reality will require an investment of $20 million. Goodwill has committed $12 million of its own funds and has embarked on a capital campaign to raise $8 million from the community. In the quiet phase of the campaign, which began at the end of last year, $4.5 million has been raised including a $1.2 million grant challenge from the Leon Levine Foundation and a $500,000 investment from Bank of America, which is the largest corporate donor to date.

“Bank of America and Goodwill have shared a common mission of advancing Charlotte’s workforce and ultimately our local economy,” said Charles Bowman, Charlotte and North Carolina president, Bank of America. “Goodwill has a proven track record of providing career, educational, and critical services for our region. We’re proud to support our longtime partner’s campaign as the Campus will benefit thousands of individuals each year facing barriers to employment opportunities.”

“The Goodwill Opportunity Campus is a unique approach to address the issues of poverty and dependence in our community,” said president & CEO, Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont Michael Elder. “Through our continued work in the community we know that it takes more than providing disadvantaged job seekers with job skills and training, we have to also provide them with services to help overcome the barriers they face that keep them in the cycle of un and underemployment.”

The Goodwill Opportunity Campus will provide a central location for coordinated services. Through the Goodwill Opportunity Campus, Goodwill’s strategic partners will be able to meet clients’ basic needs and they will be able to expand the organization’s job resource center and offer increased access to career coaching. The facility will also help Goodwill to expand its services to provide long-term support for clients to help them continue to develop so they can earn a family-sustaining wage.

“We project that in the first full year of operation, the Goodwill Opportunity Campus will serve more than 10,400 individuals with multiple barriers to employment,” said Elder. “This number represents an increase of 23% from the current number served at their career development center on Freedom Drive.”

“The Leon Levine Foundation and Goodwill share the same values and we are proud supporters of Goodwill’s vision,” said Tom Lawrence, executive director of the Leon Levine Foundation. “The Leon Levine Foundation seeks to create permanent, measurable, life-changing impact and we support Goodwill because of the organization’s highly effective leadership, track record of success and a focus on sustainability. The vision Goodwill has to expand its education and training, provide healthcare services and human services to job seekers in one location will make a positive impact on our region.”

Goodwill is inviting the public to contribute the remaining dollars needed to achieve the $8 million campaign goal. This is the first time in more than 30 years Goodwill has asked for public support on a capital project. To assist in raising the remaining funds, the Leon Levine Foundation has pledged to match every dollar donated from April 2014 to April 2015 up to $1.2 million. Individuals can visit to learn more and to donate.

Media Contact:

Melinda Wilshire | PR & Social Media Manager | Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont | Phone: 704.916.1616 | E-Mail:

Technology Has a New Hot Spot

Friday, May 30th, 2014

Goodwill launches new brand, experiential destination store concept in University area

Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont is pleased to announce the grand opening of a new technology store concept in the University area on Saturday, May 31. The GRID: Powered by Goodwill (“The GRID”) is a new brand extension for Goodwill and will be a destination spot where the tech-savvy (and the rest of us) can purchase computer components and accessories, or simply find out what’s new in the world of technology.  Grand opening festivities for the new store, located at 9605 North Tryon Street, will include a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 8:30 a.m. followed by the doors opening for shoppers at 9:00 a.m.

“Tech-hungry shoppers and curiosity-seekers will find The GRID to be an exciting addition to Charlotte’s electronics scene,” said Michael Elder, CEO of Goodwill. “Its diverse mix of new, donated and refurbished products is unique, and will make the overall Goodwill brand relevant to new segments of the consumer market while furthering our mission of helping people find family-sustaining employment.”

In addition to the current product assortment of desktop and laptop computers, printers, flat screen televisions and gaming systems sold at Goodwill’s Computer Works location, The GRID will feature new additions to its product line-up, such Raspberry Pi, audio components, portable chargers, phone and tablet accessories, retro games, gaming consoles and controllers.

“By selling brand-new merchandise, in addition to donated and refurbished goods, we will offer the public a new level of products, service and excitement while maintaining our commitment to keeping prices affordable,” said Barbara Maida-Stolle, Executive Vice President of Business Enterprises at Goodwill.

The GRID is currently developing a menu of new community offerings, such as hosting technology-related educational opportunities for children and LAN (Local Area Network) parties for multiplayer video games.

Hours of operation will be Monday – Saturday 9:00 a.m.- 9:00 p.m.; and Sunday 12:00-7:00 p.m. Goodwill’s existing Computer Works store (located at 2913 Freedom Drive) will continue to operate through Wednesday, May 28. This location will be closed once the new store opens and all team members will be transferred to the new location.

The new, 6,000-square-foot store boasts on-trend ambiance, including an easily navigable layout, sleek design, user-friendly displays and a lounge area where video game enthusiasts can try out the newest games. The GRID will offer paid training opportunities to Goodwill clients through the E-cycling program.

Donations to Goodwill support career training and job placement programs for unemployed and underemployed individuals as they upgrade their skills to enter the competitive workforce. To calculate the positive impact of your Goodwill donations, use our donation impact calculator at

About Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont
Goodwill operates 22 retail stores and has more than 50 donation sites in the Southern Piedmont region of North and South Carolina. Proceeds from the sale of donated goods fund job training and employment services for individuals facing barriers to employment such as lack of skills, experience or education. In 2013, Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont provided services to over 14,900 individuals. For more information, visit

Media Contact:

Melinda Wilshire | PR & Social Media Manager | Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont | Phone: 704.916.1616 | E-Mail:

See What a Little Good Will Do

Wednesday, April 16th, 2014

Have you seen or heard of Goodwill’s new advertising initiatives around town? These initiatives were created as part of a new brand awareness campaign designed to address a comment we hear way too often from members of the public: “I had no idea Goodwill did all of that!”

Often times when people hear the name “Goodwill,” they think of our retail stores. Many people don’t realize that we use retail proceeds to train and employ people right here in the greater Charlotte area. The services we provide help give people the tools to obtain family-sustaining employment. Our goal with this campaign is to educate, excite and motivate our community.  Our campaign tagline “See what a little good will do” demonstrates how a little good (like one bag of gently-used clothing) can make a huge impact.

We’re excited about the campaign and hope it will encourage others to see what a little good will do. We invite you to join in the conversation! Share your own Goodwill story on Facebook or Twitter and use our special hashtag #alittlegood.

Check out samples out of our new advertising campaign below and let us know what you think!

TV Commercial

Radio Ad 1

Radio Ad 2

Radio Ad 3


Andy Arnette success story

Shell Richardson success story

Goodwill Hits Milestone with One Million Donor Visits in 2013

Monday, January 6th, 2014

Proceeds from sale of local donations fund employment and training services

For the first time in its history, Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont received over one million donor visits in 2013, marking a 2% increase from the previous year.  The community contributed 389,000 pounds – or a staggering 195 tons – of donated items on December 31 alone.

A surge on the last day saw 11,122 donors scramble to 33 donation sites throughout the Southern Piedmont, bringing their gently used clothing, household items, electronics and toys.  “We normally see high donor activity the final weekend of the year.  This year was no different,” states Goodwill President and CEO Michael Elder.  “Weather and the Panther’s game probably had an impact on donor numbers Sunday.”  During the last five days of 2013 (Friday, 12/27 to Tuesday 12/31), over 31,500 donors visited Goodwill donation sites across the region.

“What is most exciting about this milestone for us is that it points to the tremendous support of our donor base.  The simple act of donating items one can no longer use is what fuels our mission of changing lives through the power of work,” said Angela Amos, Director of Marketing & Communications.  In 2013, Goodwill used the revenue earned from the sale of donated goods to provide job training, job placement and job creation resources and programs to more than 14,800 people.  “It’s plain to see that if we each do a little, together we can accomplish a lot.”

Goodwill Named One of America’s Most Inspiring Companies by Forbes for Second Year

Wednesday, December 4th, 2013

Goodwill ranks 19 out of 25, up from 23 last year

Forbes recently released its list of America’s Most Inspiring Companies, and for the second year in a row, Goodwill Industries is on the list. This year Goodwill ranked 19th, up from 23rd in 2012.

“We are very proud to be a part of the Goodwill legacy,” said Goodwill President & CEO Michael Elder. “The recognition of Goodwill as one of America’s Most Inspiring Companies, coupled with its rise in the rankings, speaks to the notable work that Goodwill team members do in communities across America each day.”

Locally, Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont is leading the way in inspiring work. Last year, with the help of donations from the community, Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont provided job creation programs, job resource centers and training services to more than 14,000 individuals in an eight-county region spanning North and South Carolina. Goodwill enterprises paid over $3 million in wages to local clients working to achieve economic self-sufficiency in 2012.

“Helping people find work is our core business,” said Executive Vice President of Workforce Services and Organizational Development Chris Jackson. “Having a job allows individuals to contribute economically to their own success, which is an important part of a healthy community. We are happy we can help provide the career training, skills and resources necessary to support the needs of a family.”

To identify America’s 25 most inspiring companies, Forbes used survey results from Performance Inspired, Inc., a consulting and training firm that helps organizations elevate performance through the science of inspiration. The company surveyed 4,738 consumers and asked respondents to rank which five companies they found most inspirational. It also asked them to describe their most recent encounter with each company. The goal of the survey was to find a correlation between successful companies and those that inspire their consumers.

To calculate the positive impact of your Goodwill donations, use our donation impact calculator.

Join this effort to help area’s low-skilled workers find jobs

Friday, November 15th, 2013

For the jobless, the holiday season can be particularly difficult, especially since diminished unemployment benefits do not pay enough to cover even basic expenses. As the holidays approach, I encourage all of us to think creatively about ways that our community can work together to reduce barriers to employment that challenge thousands of our citizens in their quest to provide for their families.

While the recession has affected our nation’s entire workforce, it has devastated the ability of low-skilled job seekers and entry-level workers to find family sustaining employment. Last year, Charlotte-Mecklenburg’s workforce development agencies – under record-breaking demand for services and diminished funding – banded together to form a task force to explore opportunities for strengthening community services for job seekers. By working together for the past 20 months, we are gaining a more thorough understanding of the complex challenges facing low-skilled individuals and making strides to develop more effective job training services that will benefit local workers and employers.

The workforce development sector has shifted gears to deepen our collective impact on the employment outcomes of the people we serve. For example, we are in the process of developing a standardized “soft skills” training curriculum for clients, marking the first time that our agencies have reached a consensus on best practices in pre-employment training. But much work remains to keep building momentum and break the joblessness cycle. Here at Goodwill, we see hundreds of individuals each month who have been stuck at the back of the jobs line for years because they’re perceived as “damaged goods” by employers. We prepare them with the proper skills to find and keep a job so that they can support themselves and their family. However, to make the transition from low-wage worker to living wage worker, this group needs support from individuals and employers.

I invite people to join the movement to create local solutions to employment barriers. Become a mentor to a youth without career goals. Volunteer as a mock interviewer at one of Goodwill’s job training classes. Hire a person who has been out of work for six months or longer. They may have a weaker resume, but their motivation to work is strong. When a person is able to contribute economically, that not only benefits the individual and their family, it goes a long way in building stronger communities.

By Michael Elder

Special to the Observer
Posted: Thursday, Nov. 14, 2013

Goodwill Announces Relocation of Monroe Retail Store

Thursday, September 5th, 2013

Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont is pleased to announce the relocation and grand re-opening of its retail store and donation center in Monroe on Saturday, September 21. Local officials, community leaders and Goodwill representatives will be on hand for a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 8:30 a.m. at the new store, located at 4109 West Highway 74. The doors will open for shoppers at 9:00 a.m.

The new 12,000-square-foot store will feature aesthetic upgrades such as an improved layout, new fixtures to better display merchandise and ease of access for the public to drop off donations. Shoppers at this store will now experience a more modern and customer-focused environment as they take advantage of high-quality, low-cost shopping for the entire family. All team members from the existing Monroe store will be transferred to the new location.

“Since Goodwill first opened its store in Monroe more than 25 years ago, this community has shown tremendous support for our mission of helping people achieve economic independence and dignity through work,” said Michael Elder, President & CEO. “We value our long-term partnership with the City of Monroe in helping turn donations into good jobs, good homes and good neighborhoods.”

The revenues generated from the sale of merchandise in Goodwill stores support the training and employment programs offered by Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont. The new store is estimated to generate an annual $500,000 economic impact locally through job creation and workforce development, as well as provide a convenient way for people to donate gently used clothing, electronics and other household items they no longer use, diverting those items from area landfills.

“We feel that the increased roadfront visibility offered by the new location will engage even more shoppers and donors from Monroe and the neighboring Indian Trail and Stallings communities, which will benefit the entire area,” said Barbara Maida-Stolle, Executive Vice President of Business Enterprises. “Our retail stores are a true social enterprise. The more you shop or donate at Goodwill, the more job training and placement services we can provide the community.”

The new store and donation center hours of operation are Monday – Thursday 9:30 a.m.- 9:00 p.m.; Friday – Saturday 9:00 a.m.- 9:00 p.m.; and Sunday 12:00-7:00 p.m. Goodwill’s existing retail store in Monroe (located at 1213-B Roosevelt Blvd.) will continue to operate through Tuesday, September 17. This location will be closed once the new store opens; however, Goodwill will continue to operate an Attended Donation Center at this site.

To calculate the positive impact of your Goodwill donations, use our donation impact calculator at

“Living United” Show Takes on Unemployment

Wednesday, July 31st, 2013

Unemployment has been a hot topic lately, with recent changes out of Raleigh creating significant consequences for those unable to find a job. Goodwill President and CEO Michael Elder discusses how United Way funding helps his agency put the unemployed back to work during a segment on the WTVI show Living United, which aired July 28.

The jobs crisis is crippling millions of Americans. North Carolina has the fifth highest unemployment rate in the nation. By providing job training and employment skills, Goodwill empowers people to earn a living, improve their lives and strengthen their families and communities – the same community in which you live.

Living United, a monthly roundtable conversation on WTVI (PBS Charlotte), focuses on how our community can “Be The Change” for those most in need. The 30-minute show is hosted by Anne McNeill, a United Way volunteer and manager of corporate citizenship and corporate affairs for IBM.

Goodwill® Named One of America’s Most Inspiring Companies by Forbes

Monday, October 8th, 2012

Forbes recently released a list of America’s 25 Most Inspiring Companies that included Goodwill® this year for the first time.

The list was based on results from consulting firm Performance Inspired, Inc., which surveyed 2,175 consumers online to identify these “most inspiring” companies. These consumers responded by explaining the five companies they found most inspirational and why.

The Forbes article quoted Terry Barber, chief inspiration officer for Performance Inspired, as saying: “Consumers are really appreciative of the Goodwill retail stores and the perceived feel-good value they are bringing to local communities.”

According to a separate Forbes article, Goodwill was one of the smaller companies on the list that did well because of a good story behind the name.

“Goodwill has a tried and true history of being a household name and respected brand,” said Kim Zimmer, chief communications officer and senior VP of global affairs at Goodwill Industries International. “Consumers have come to understand that by shopping and donating at your local Goodwill store, they are investing in their local community.”

The research shows that consumers feel more inspired—and spend more at companies that inspire them—than ever before. In general, 92 percent of respondents said they felt inspired to share their experiences with others and another 86 would recommend the company to friends and family. Nearly 40 percent of respondents said that the nonprofit sector has a major role to play in making the world a better place.

Perhaps the most encouraging statistic? More than 70 percent of respondents said they would spend more money on a company that inspires them.

Keep up with more Goodwill news by following our blog,!

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