What is ‘BLIC’ and How Does it Impact Our Community? 

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is the longstanding practice among businesses to voluntarily contribute to societal development within their communities. Recognizing the need for new and more targeted models, LM established the Business Leaders Impact Council (BLIC) to develop partnerships and collaborations across businesses, associations, and nonprofits committed to improving Montgomery County.

A new initiative of Leadership Montgomery (LM) to promote corporate social responsibility in the County, The Business Leaders Impact Council held its inaugural quarterly meeting in November at the LM’s offices.

“We have been working with leaders for over thirty years to identify and address ways to create and impact change in Montgomery County,” said President & CEO Dana Pauley.” The Business Leaders Impact Council takes our experience, our ability to convene, and the opportunity to connect and prepare leaders to come together and collectively work to improve our community.”

A 2019 National Survey found that 70 percent of consumers wanted to know what the businesses they support are doing to address social and environmental issues, and 46 percent paid close attention to a brand’s social responsibility efforts when they buy a product.

Top trends in corporate social responsibility include increased financial and operational transparency, investment in green technologies/sustainable environmental practices, local community and employee engagement, and racial justice or diversity and inclusion initiatives.

“The Council is an opportunity to engage on these, help create impact, and plan for a future that is likely to be more complicated than the present,” said Grace Virtue, Ph.D., Director, Partnerships & Corporate Engagement and a leading thinker on multiculturalism and CSR in Montgomery County.

The Council will provide enhanced opportunities for its members to make connections and collaborate through participation in business roundtables; complimentary tickets to the LEAD Forum, LM’s signature annual event; help with impact day tool kits; and opportunities to network with a cross-section of like-minded leaders committed to collaboration and mentorship through an equity lens.

Additionally, members will have access to best practices in giving program structures; employee volunteerism, and community engagement; and access to innovative speakers; best practices in employee engagement, impact strategies, and corporate philanthropy.

Communication benefits include opportunities to influence conversations on leadership through guest posts on LM’s website and share news and social impact stories with LM’s network through our website and social media platforms.

Ed Woods, President and CEO of TerpSys, will chair The Council through 2023.

The next meeting of the Business Leaders Impact Council is set for February 16 at A Wider Circle from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. The first hour is reserved for those already members of BLIC, while those interested in becoming members are invited to join at 4 p.m.

To set up a conversation on how your organization can join the Business Leaders Impact Council, reach out to Ramona Crawford, LM’s Partnerships & Development Officer.