It's a tradition at Pelco, but this year they outdid themselves! Last week, Pelco employees presented 153,240 Toys for Tots to the U.S. Marine Corps during a ceremony at the company’s Clovis, Calif., headquarters. The company's cumulative contribution since 1993 exceeded one million toys with last year's donation.
Toys for Tots Foundation president and CEO, Lt. General Matthew T. Cooper, USMC (ret.) stated last year, “This Pelco donation is among the largest in the entire nation, and ensures that all of this area's needy children will receive a nice gift this holiday season. Thank you so much. Achieving the one-million toy mark is simply astonishing."
This year's festive occasion began with a colorful parade including truckloads of toys, United States Marine Corps personnel, Fresno's Roosevelt High School marching band, Clovis Police Department, California Highway Patrol, and numerous creative employee entries; all cheered on by more than 2,000 Pelco employees and the public. Following the parade, U.S. Marie Corp. personnel gratefully accepted the company's contribution in a formal ceremony – surrounded by mountains of toys and a gigantic crowd of exuberant employees.
Pelco president and CEO David L. McDonald said, “The continuation of these huge toy contributions is a true testament to the dedication and generosity of this great Pelco family. Each year I feel a tremendous sense of pride for our wonderful people when the toys are presented to the Marines. Over one million children's smiles – and counting. There can be no more worthy cause than this.”
Toys for Tots has grown steadily since 1993's modest donation of 808 toys to become Pelco's "flagship" charity; with the company matching one‑for‑one the number of toys donated by employees. This year's contribution represents an average of over 30 toys from each of Pelco's 2,600 worldwide employees – excluding the company's match. Employees raise money throughout the year with dozens of activities such as bake sales, raffles, voluntary payroll deductions, and solicitations from suppliers and customers. A themed Masquerade Ball has become a prominent annual fundraising activity over the past five years.