ED Staff Give to Charity, with a Boost from Secretary Duncan

Secretary Duncan congratulates Paul Steenen of ED’s Office of Communications and Outreach at a meeting honoring staff who have pledged one percent or two percent of their 2011 salaries to the Combined Federal Campaign.

Secretary Duncan congratulates Paul Steenen of ED’s Office of Communications and Outreach at a meeting honoring staff who have pledged one percent or two percent of their 2011 salaries to the Combined Federal Campaign.

Like many of their colleagues throughout Federal government, U.S. Department of Education employees are showing their holiday spirit by lending their support to the Combined Federal Campaign, the annual charitable giving drive for employees in the Federal workplace. CFC provides funds to more than 4,000 local, national and international charities.

As of today, ED employees in the Washington, D.C., area have donated or pledged more than $520,000, about two-thirds of the way toward their 2010 agency-wide goal of $825,000.  Thanks are due to the work of volunteer “key workers” in the Department’s principal offices, who have been canvassing their colleagues and organizing events such as bake sales, chili cook offs, and talent shows to raise additional dollars.

Education Secretary Arne Duncan has cheered on the staff since ED’s  campaign began in October.   He helped kick off the Washington, D.C., area effort with a charity event that gave employees a chance to compete against him and show their hoop skills in various basketball competitions.

Last week Arne released a lighthearted video of himself making his own CFC donation (watch the video at this link) and emailed it to all staff in the headquarters office.

Arne and the winner of the "CFC" game competition, Charles Browne of the Office of Vocational and Adult Education

Arne and the winner of the "CFC" game competition, Charles Browne of the Office of Vocational and Adult Education

“The holiday season has always been the time for Americans to make a special effort to help those in need,” Arne said.  “These are tough times for many families in our region and across the country.   Contributing to the Combined Federal Campaign is one way that we as Federal employees can help those less fortunate than we are. “

Yesterday he met and posed for photographs with ED employees in the D.C. area who earned CFC’s “Eagle” and “Double Eagle” award for pledging to donate one or two percent of their 2011 salaries to the campaign.  “We have the hardest working team, I think, in the Federal government.  We also have the most generous,” Arne said.