For every 250,000 hours safely worked at the Calhoun plant, Resolute gives the employees money to donate to local organizations. The company employees have donated $20,000 to various charities already this year.
“When we got it, it was unanimous that we would give it back to the local fire departments after the fire we had here at the mill,” Communication Incentive and Awareness committee chairman Daryl Dunavant said.
Both stations responded to a fire at the plant in July.
Resolute’s general manager, Joe Vaughn, said he usually does not know much about the charity that money is being donated too. This time, however, was an exception.
“I have a close place in my heart for first responders, because I see a lot of you guys in action more than I want to,” Vaughn said. “We appreciate all of your efforts.”
Calhoun Assistant Chief Darrin Sherrill said he had a unique perspective because he is a Resolute employee and a firefighter. He said this has given him opportunities to see emergency response “from both sides of the fence.”
Bradley County Fire Chief Dewey Woody said he appreciated the working relationship the department had with the company. Woody said the two fire stations work together in many situations.
“If we need them, we know they are coming at a moment’s notice,” Woody said.
Woody gave members of management and the CIA committee an overview of the changes that Bradley County Fire Rescue is making with the expansion of the department. He said the construction and staffing of the three fire stations will allow BCFR to provide more service faster.
Vaughn asked what specifically the money might be used for. He said employees like to know how donated funds might be used. Woody said he thought the donation would go toward water rescue equipment for the Charleston station. Sherrill said a specific use had not yet been decided.