Simmons Employee Foundation

The Simmons Employee Foundation (SEF) started in 2004 when the employees of Simmons Hanly Conroy came together to create a single, streamlined way for them to give back to the communities they are so proud to call home. As a result of their creativity and heartfelt commitment, the foundation was formed. Since then, employees have donated more than $1 million of financial support and countless volunteer hours to hundreds of charitable organizations

The employee foundation fulfills its mission as an innovative resource dedicated to supporting other charitable organizations through coordinating annual fundraising events, sponsoring other community fundraising events, supplying donations of time and resources and more. The foundation’s charitable work extends to all the cities where its offices are located: New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, St. Louis and Alton, Illinois.

Annual Employee Charity Fundraisers & Events

Through SEF, the employees of Simmons Hanly Conroy organize and host three main fundraising activities: an annual golf tournament, a fall food drive and an Adopt-A-Family holiday gift drive. Each event is overseen by a committee comprised of foundation board members led by the SEF director. The current SEF Director is Tamara Ferguson.

SEF Annual Golf Tournament

For nearly 15 years the foundation has hosted its Annual Golf Tournament as a way to raise funds for local charities. Since its inception, the tournament has raised over $200,000. Local organizations the tournament benefitted include:

  • Neighbors in Need – Edwardsville, Illinois
  • Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation – Alton, Illinois
  • Blessings in a Backpack – Alton, Illinois
  • Burns Recovered Support Group, Inc. – St. Louis, Missouri
  • Joshua Chamberlain Society – St. Louis, Missouri
  • New Opportunities – Granite City, Illinois
  • Madison County Challenger Baseball – Madison County, Illinois
  • I.S. K.I.D.S. – Highland, Illinois
  • 3 Little Birds 4 Life – Collinsville, Illinois
  • Illinois Kids’ Chance – Alton, IL
  • And more…

The annual tournament is organized in a 4-person team scramble format, with all registration proceeds benefiting the selected charities. Every year a different charity or charities are selected as beneficiaries.

SEF Annual Food Drive

The foundation’s annual food drive is an event that collects food and monetary donations for food pantries in the cities where the firm has office locations. Started in 2005, the event takes place during the months of October and November, so pantries will be well-stocked in time for the Holiday Season. Five pantries near the Alton office receive an average 5,000-lbs. donation shortly before Thanksgiving. The delivery is the second largest single donation many of the pantries receive, behind only the Boy Scouts Food Drive.

Employees of Simmons Hanly Conroy are encouraged to participate in the drive through internal activities such as raffle tickets, sports team/casual Fridays and even a Halloween costume contest. Donations from each of the firm’s office locations are divided between pantries located within their community. Pantries include:

  • Crisis Food Center – Alton, Illinois
  • The Salvation Army – Alton, Illinois
  • Community Hope Center – Cottage Hills, Illinois
  • Collinsville Area Ministerial Association’s Helping Hands Food Pantry – Collinsville, Illinois
  • Community Care Center – Granite City, Illinois
  • Great Chicago Food Depository – Chicago, Illinois
  • Ocean Park Community Center– Los Angeles, California
  • Marin Food Bank – San Francisco, California
  • And more…

Organizations Helped

SEF has supported a wide variety of organizations in Madison County, Illinois, and throughout the greater St. Louis area. The foundation has also lent its support to a number of individuals and families with urgent personal or medical needs.

The foundation’s service earned Simmons Hanly Conroy the United Way Community Spirit Award in 2005. Only one organization in Southwest Illinois was chosen for this honor. SEF has also won the Lovejoy Elementary Community Partnership Award for their participation in the Backpacks for Kids Program, and the Alton Salvation Army’s 2015 Food Collection Superstar Award for its food drive donation.

Some include:

  • American Lung Association
  • American Red Cross
  • Salvation Army
  • Phoenix Crisis Center
  • Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation
  • Beverly Farm Foundation
  • United Way Community Christmas Program
  • ALIVE (Alternatives to Living in Violent Environments
  • American Heart Association
  • Metro East Humane Society
  • Boys and Girls Club of Bethalto
  • U.R.T. (Bubblemasters Underwater Rescue Team)
  • Oasis Women’s Center
  • Make-A-Wish Foundation
  • And more.

In the foundation’s first five years alone, it raised over $500,000 for local charities and provided thousands of hours of volunteer work for area organizations.

SEF Adopt-A-Family

Every holiday season the foundation organizes its Adopt-A-Family program, which provides toys and meals to low-income families throughout the Riverbend area.

Local shelters give the foundation board members wish lists from families, which include items such as clothing, food and toys for the children. Employees of Simmons Hanly Conroy participate in the event by ‘adopting’ one of the families and buying gifts off their lists.

The Simmons Employee Foundation believes everyone should be granted the chance to have a happy holiday season, and this event provides just that for many area families in need. Some gifts donated include bikes, laptops, clothes, basketball hoops and special food items such as holiday hams.

Apply for Financial Support from Simmons Employee Foundation

Since its inception in 2004, the Simmons Employee Foundation’s mission has been to be an innovative resource dedicated to the individuals, families and organizations within the communities where employees live. Through SEF’s individual donation request program, the foundation has provided monetary funds to individuals and organizations throughout Madison County, Illinois such as the Beverly Farm Foundation in Godfrey, the Boys & Girls Club of Bethalto and Alton, the Metro East Humane Society in Edwardsville and many more.

The foundation is an Illinois non-for-profit corporation that has received federal tax-exempt status from the Internal Revenue Service as a Section 501(c)(3) charitable support organization.

SEF does not provide grants to political organizations or religious organizations for religious purposes. Additionally, family members of Simmons Hanly Conroy employees will not be provided with funds from the foundation.