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American Express Company was named to Fortune Magazine's
2004 list of “Most Admired Companies in America,” and also ranked as #1 in their industry. American Express has appeared numerous times on the Fortune "100 Best Companies To Work For" list. In 2003, the Company garnered applause for returning to headquarters near ground zero. American Express employees feel respected: One nonmanagement staffer says that if he needed to reach the CEO, Ken Chenault "would take the call or call me back." American Express was named among Fortune's
"100 Best" in 2000—and specifically lauded for their workplace diversity and Office of the Ombudsman, which helps resolve workplace issues.
American Express was named a Top Three company on Working Mother's
inaugural list of "Best Companies for Women of Color". Similar to Working Mother's
list of "100 Best Companies," this new list tracks corporate progress on the advancement of women of color and how supportive the workplace culture is of them. In the first half of 2003, American Express was named to 12 workplace quality lists in six countries, including this most recent honor.
American Express has been a recurring co-sponsor of the annual Domestic Violence Walk/Run in New York City (the Fifth Annual Event was on October 26, 2003), held in Battery Park — in the American Express "backyard". American Express Corporate Security has provided in-kind donations to the DV Walks and distributed "walk" materials (free of charge) for the organizers. Past Amex grant recipients—related to the issue of domestic violence—include The National Domestic Violence Hotline, and localized organizations such as Chrysalis Shelter for Victims of Domestic Violence, Inc. (transitional housing, counseling and outreach services to women and children in Arizona, who are victims of domestic violence), and Family Service Association of Beloit, Inc., of Beloit, Wis., who used American Express grant money to teach victims of domestic violence basic financial and life skills.
American Express participated (2002-2003) in the Wireless Foundation's Phone Raising program to benefit CAEPV throughout Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Also in 2002, the Salt Lake City Field Office of American Express held a domestic violence awareness week. The Utah Domestic Violence Advisory Council presented its annual award to American Express in recognition of their internal education efforts regarding domestic violence.
Project Journey, a program designed to help unemployed and underemployed women, was launched in their Arizona offices in 2000. Through this program, American Express offers services to these women by helping them to explore employment options, giving them training in basic job skills, and offering hiring opportunities with American Express Travel Services. Some are hired by American Express and some are not. Those that are not are coached and consulted with for alternative opportunities.
In addition to their regular assistance to employees concerning partner violence, American Express has provided several activities throughout Domestic Violence Awareness Month (October of each year) at the corporate offices as well as company field offices:
- Throughout the company, paychecks for both pay periods in the month included a message that October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The corporate office held events which included speakers such as Linda Fairstein, Chief of the Sex Crimes Prosecution Unit of the Manhattan District Attorney's Office, Dr. Lem Burnham, Vice President Employee and Player Development for the National Football League, Suzie McConnell Serio of the WNBA's Cleveland Rockers, and an employee who is a survivor of partner violence. The office also held a "penny drive" to raise money for donation to a national domestic violence organization.
- American Express field offices in Phoenix, Salt Lake City, Fort Lauderdale, and Greensboro promoted the month of October in a variety of ways — inviting speakers from law enforcement and advocacy groups, presenting videos and materials to employees, placing posters and brochures in rest rooms, and other activities geared to raise awareness of the issue in the workplace.