GIANT Puts Some Lessons from the Satell Institute to Work in the Communities it Serves


The GIANT Company has long been active in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), but President Nick Bertram made sure the 193-store, Pennsylvania-based supermarket chain stepped up its game over the past year.

Bertram gives considerable credit for his company’s growing commitment to CSR to his involvement with and exposure to the Satell Institute (SI), a Think and Do Tank for Corporate Social Responsibility.

He signed on as a Corporate Member right after meeting with Mr. Ed Satell and cites the Institute’s unmatched resources with helping him to realize that The GIANT Company could make more of an impact by focusing its philanthropic and volunteer efforts in the communities in which it serves.

To start, GIANT had more than 50 employees (director level and above) complete the Massive Online Open Course (MOOC) on CSR created by the Satell Institute and the University of Pennsylvania to better understand CSR. Next, GIANT brought on a social impact manager and aligned its visionary giving and volunteer programs with focused areas of impact based on three pillars:

Changing Children’s Lives

The GIANT Company is the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s (CHOP) largest corporate donor. The company has contributed over $18 million to various initiatives over the past 20+ years, including giving nearly $175,000 in 2019 to help open the University City-based Healthy Weight Food Pharmacy which provides families experiencing food insecurity with a supply of healthy food and connects them with community resources and support to learn how to eat healthy on a budget.

Ending Hunger

Additionally, GIANT provides product to food banks through its Meat the Needs Program and as a partner of the nationwide Feeding America network. They were pivotal in creating a statewide network of food banks to combat hunger when the pandemic struck.

Healing the Planet

The organization also has programs centered on environmental impact with activities that reduce waste and minimize the carbon footprints of the company and its shoppers.

The ROI of CSR

Bertram thinks The GIANT Company’s giving and volunteer efforts pay off in multiple ways, including helping employees to become proud of their work and roles in the community while providing important services that battle food insecurity, educate on healthy habits and reduce impact on the environment. By strengthening the communities its stores are located within, GIANT is helping its bottom line.

“There are definitely financial benefits to investing in a healthier community,” he said. “You have a stronger customer base, a stronger talent pool which you get to create jobs for.”

The Satell Institute enables businesses and nonprofits to work together in a synergistic way and produce greater results than they would get by working independently by providing forums where CEOs can interact with nonprofit leaders. Bertram is a member of the Advisory Board of SI and has introduced other companies in Central Pennsylvania to the growing organization that has continued to add Corporate Members through the pandemic as part of its successful expansion strategy.

“The [best part of the Satell Institute] is when for-profits and not-for-profits get together and do their thing — one creating new jobs and the other answering needs that government and the business community can’t answer,” said The GIANT Company President Nick Bertram. That type of magic is what the Satell Institute was established to help create. “The only cost is continuing to do what you want to and get new tools and relationships while you’re doing it,” Bertram said. “The Satell Institute gives; it doesn’t take.”

The Satell Institute Continues to
Welcome New Members


We are thrilled to have membership at the Satell Institute continue to grow as great companies and private businesses and foundations choose to support CSR initiatives. This week we welcome new member, Norman Cohn, Chairman of the Advertising Specialty Institute® (ASI). ASI is the promotional product industry’s largest membership organization in a multi-billion-dollar industry offering media, technology, marketing and education to help cultivate member success and community.

ASI chose to commit to generously supporting Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) for four years as part of their membership in the Satell Institute. JDRF works to accelerate life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent, and treat type 1 diabetes (T1D) and its complications. JDRF works every day to change the reality of this disease for millions of people—and to prevent anyone else from ever knowing it—by funding research, advocating for government support of research and new therapies, ensuring new therapies come to market and connecting and engaging the T1D community.

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