Torrance, CA (March 18, 2009) – Phenomenex Inc., a global leader in the manufacture of separation science consumables, had a blast last Friday, all in the name of charity. Hundreds of Phenomenex employees around the world showed up to work dressed in the most ridiculous attire they could gather with the only rule being: it had to be red and look funny.
The catalyst for the global event came from the Phenomenex United Kingdom subsidiary, whose team planned some office comic relief in step with “Red Nose Day”. Businesses throughout the UK use this day to take themselves less seriously at work and raise funds to help disadvantaged children by wearing silly costumes, playing practical jokes, and collecting donations for face painting and baked goods (see www.rednoseday.com for more details). After learning of the plan, the staff at Phenomenex Headquarters urged all of its global offices to join in the fun.
In Torrance, employees gathered outside for an afternoon of sheer outrageousness. Joining them was Donna Dawick of Cheer for Children, a Redondo Beach based non-profit that raises donations to help acutely ill children and their siblings at County-Harbor UCLA Medical Center and for children with orthopedic disabilities at local schools. During the event, Ms. Dawick scored a soccer goal worth $1000 for her charity. “We’ve been fortunate to work with the fabulous employees at Phenomenex for over four years now and I have never seen an organization so passionate and fun. With their efforts we’ve been able to help many local children and families. This event has been amazing and will help many more.”
By the end of the day Phenomenex raised $5,150 for the charity through a combination of sporting challenges, raffles, and refreshment sales. Plenty of foolishness was mixed in to the fundraising and at one point the founder and CEO, Fasha Mahjoor was ambushed by his staff armed with “super-soaker” water guns and wound up drenched. Somehow he managed to keep the oversized red clown nose he was wearing attached throughout the attack.
Mr. Mahjoor commented, “With less than 24 hours notice, hundreds of our energetic staff showed up to our global offices dressed in outlandish red costumes ready to support a charity event many had never heard of before. But I’m not surprised - this is just our culture.” Mahjoor is not yet certain of the total amount of funds raised in other offices but he does mention that Phenomenex is heavily involved with many forms of community volunteerism around the world as part of its corporate mission. “It is our duty to serve our communities and to have fun fulfilling that duty whenever we can.”
You could say the people of Phenomenex are a bunch of clowns, and you’d be right, but they are a unique and dynamic group that has evolved a very special corporate culture. Last year Phenomenex was recognized with the prestigious “Top 15 Small Workplaces” award by the Wall Street Journal and Winning Workplaces. They were also recently recognized by the American Red Cross with a Platinum Award for long-standing support and yearly excellence in donation levels.
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