Our Volunteers Make a Difference
Norfolk Southern’s formal volunteer program, the Thoroughbred Volunteers, offers employees a way to give back to their communities while serving as official railroad ambassadors. The program has an active presence at four of our largest centers of employment – Atlanta, Norfolk and Roanoke, Va., and Harrisburg, Pa. In 2013, we added a new chapter in Altoona, Pa., home to our Juniata Locomotive Shop, the largest locomotive repair and maintenance facility in North America.
The Thoroughbred chapters below recorded more than 2,000 volunteer hours in 2013. This does not include the many hours of service contributed by individual employees while volunteering on their own. In an informal 2012 survey, 360 employees reported contributing around 82,000 volunteer hours to organizations representing community, civic, culture and arts, education, environmental, health and human services, and business and economic development interests.
2013 Thoroughbred Volunteers Highlights Include:
- Contributed 907 volunteer hours during nine events
- Packed 460 boxes (6,700 pounds) of medical supplies for countries in need (MedShare)
- Sorted more than 11,000 pounds of food for distribution through the Atlanta Community Food Bank
- Collected 37 boxes of school supplies for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America
- Participated in Hands on Atlanta to clean Kittredge Park
- Contributed 933 volunteer hours during 11 events
- Participated in Clean the Bay Day, Paint Your Heart Out, Special Olympics, and various food drives and sorting events
- Volunteered at the Dwelling Place and ForKids, organizations that support homeless families
- Contributed 276 volunteer hours during eight events
- Collected 405 pounds of food for a food drive
- Sorted 18,500 pounds of food at the Feeding America Southwest Virginia warehouse
- Participated in Clean Valley Day
- Helped distribute school supplies to more than 1,300 children at the Back to School Blast
- Collected more than 800 pounds of food for the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank
- Gathered five 55-gallon bags of toys for the U.S. Marine Corps’ Toys for Tots program
- Filled more than 50 backpacks with school supplies in support of Operation Backpack
Legal Department Takes Food Fight
Norfolk Southern lawyers do more than handle legal matters. Participating in the 2013 Legal Food Frenzy, a competition among Virginia’s legal community to support local food banks, railroad lawyers in Norfolk placed second among medium-size legal firms, departments, and offices. Our team won “The Virginia Strawberry Award” for per capita results, collecting the equivalent of 844 pounds per person in food and monetary donations.
United Way Trailblazer
The United Way of South Hampton Roads recognized Norfolk Southern as a Gold Trailblazer for the company’s 2013 United Way campaign at our Norfolk headquarters, where 76 percent of employees participated. Employees contributed more than $900,000, one of the largest corporate gifts in the Southeastern Virginia United Way region.
A Model Railroader
Norfolk Southern’s Melvin Crawley is known for his collaborative efforts to help improve safety and customer service. To recognize his industry contributions, the St. Louis Railway Club, a group comprising Class I and short line railroads and suppliers, named Crawley its 2013 Club Man of the Year.
During Crawley’s five years as superintendent of our terminal at St. Louis, employees worked 2 million consecutive hours without a reportable injury. He was cited for helping other railroads adopt safety practices successful at Norfolk Southern. Crawley became superintendent of Norfolk Southern’s Georgia Division in early 2014.
“I’ve always tried to extend myself and maintain a high level of communication with the other railroads to make sure there’s a sharing of ideas and best practices, because you can learn a lot from them, and they can help you, too,” Crawley said. “You have to be a good corporate partner if you want to survive and thrive in today’s market. It’s just good business sense.”