The Chamber stated in a release that in addition to having a large presence in the city, Shell has a long history of community service that was made even more pronounced this past year.
Included in approximately 50 volunteer projects completed in 2013, Shell employees and contractors played a key role in restoring the beacon atop Mt. Diablo to honor veterans of World War II, raised money to refurbish the Martinez Veterans Hall kitchen, installed decorative molding at the Martinez Library, and hosted the 11th annual Shell Run for Education raising over $50,000 for Martinez schools.
“Shell is a large company that feels like a local business,” said John Stevens, CEO of the Martinez Chamber. “They always do so much for the community, but the board felt that this past year, they went above and beyond. It’s not just financial support. Their employees are omnipresent in the community, finding needs and addressing them. It’s part of their culture.”
“We consider this a very high honor and are humbled by it,” said Shell General Manager Paul Gabbard. “It is our goal to be a valued member of the community, both in how we operate and how we participate. We know our license to operate comes from the community and that doing business here is a privilege that must be continually earned.”
Shell has been in business in Martinez since 1915, when the company established their first U.S. refinery here. The refinery asks each of its departments to perform a service project each year, and gives up to two work days for its employees to do community work.
Shell employees have refurbished historic buildings downtown, installed computers and solar panels at local schools, built a picnic grove at Waterfront Park and staffed Meals on Wheels routes, amongst scores of other projects.
On behalf of Paul Gabbard, Shell Martinez public affairs manager Steve Lesher accepted the award. Shell was also honored on May 9 at the East Bay Leadership Council business awards, which brought together all the businesses named Business of the Year by local Chambers of Commerce in Contra Costa County and the Tri-Valley area.