Edward St John Foundation Inc.
Before COVID-19, the Edward St. John Foundation made more than 30 philanthropic commitments to organizations to supports programs and events for 2020. When those programs were postponed or canceled, Executive Director Sharon Akers took initiative and contacted each organization personally to reaffirm her foundation’s commitment, while also organizing food donation collection points and personal protection equipment storage.
“People working together to achieve goals and fulfill needs has been the most effective management style in my opinion,” over the past year, Akers says.
Early in her career, Akers says she learned the impact of building strong relationships and providing support to others through volunteerism, mentoring and board membership.
Akers attributes her success as a leader to her mom, who she says reinforced the importance of kindness, compassion and helping others. Edward St. John, she adds, empowers her to “do good.”
“I have tremendous respect for his business acumen and his commitment to giving back,” she says. “Through these efforts, we have been able to have a positive impact on the lives of many.”
Akers says she always had a collaborative work style. During the past year, this meant increasing focus on the needs of tenants as they faced COVID-19 challenges and helping secure available Paycheck Protection Program grants.