Ingram Micro's VentureTech VARs Give Back

Ingram Micro VTN Gives Back

Ingram Micro and its VentureTech Network members recently completed their Spring Invitational conference, which included the fourth annual VTN Gives Back event to benefit the American and Canadian Cancer Societies. Two of VentureTech's Chapters were also feted for their own charitable efforts at the local level.

Pictured left, Pat Whelan, owner from VentureTech's charity organizer, Team Dynamix, addresses the crowd in Chicago.

Busting Boredom

Helen Lesser, (right), vice president of operations at Nexum, a Chicago-based solution provider and VentureTech member, helps create some "boredom buster" bags, that will be filled with things to do and given to hospitalized children waiting for cancer treatment.

Puzzling Situation

A team of VentureTech VARs works to solve a jigsaw puzzle during a team-building event during VentureTech's VTN Gives Back session. From left are Chuck Warner, Secant Technologies, Kalamazoo Mich.; Deepak Thadani, SysIntegrators, Woodside N.Y.; John Iaccarino, Realtime Consultants, Mahwah N.J.; and Adrian Zannin, The PCA Group, Buffalo, N.Y.

Helping Out

Three VTN VARs, including Scott Thomas, (left), general manager of F12 Networks, Calgary, Alberta, Canada; an unidentified VAR (center); and Todd Hanna of Protocol Technologies in Vernon, B.C., Canada; are all smiles after participating in the VTN Gives Back event.

Teamwork Pays Off

Rick Jordon of Tenet Computers, Toronto, Canada, (right), and two others are all smiles as they help assemble a rocking chair during the fourth annual VTN Gives Back event in Chicago.

PacWest Raises $21,000

Members of VTN's Pacific West chapter, including Patrick Ciccarelli, (left), president of Varsity Technologies, San Francisco; Lesleigh Watson, COO at Northwest Computer Support, Seattle (second from left); and Kevin McCarthy, vice president at Afinety, Encino, Calif. (third from left), presented more than $21,000 to an official from The Lance Armstrong Foundation's LiveStrong, a cancer support organization.

The idea to raise money for Livestrong based on $1 donation for every mile employees walk soon took root. The initiative was only announced in February, leaving the VARs less than seven weeks to get employees involved and to raise money, Ciccarelli said.

The PacWest chapter now has 12 months to plan its next fund-raising activity and Ciccarelli is confident the group can raise $50,000 by next spring. "Those that didn't contribute see what we accomplished and they want to be involved," he said.

Big Apple Cares

VentureTech's Big Apple chapter recently completed its third charity initiative, donating more than $25,000 worth of equipment plus installation and support resources to Chevra Hatzalah, an independent non-profit ambulance service that serves New York City. The VARs joined to outfit the customer with more than a dozen items, including document scanners, servers and software, which allowed the organization to more efficiently manage data that previously had to be entered manually.

Previously, the chapter performed IT makeovers for a women's shelter in New York and the AIDS Resource Foundation for Children in Newark, N.J.

Here VAR executives celebrate the completion of the project with Chevra Hatzalah officials.

For A Good Cause

Chevra Hatzalah began in 1965 as one man with an oxygen tank and has become the largest all-volunteer EMT ambulance service in the world with 15 chapters in New York that handle up to 300 calls per day.

Chevra Hatzalah has to file a report on every call they make but didn't have any IT equipment to automate the process, said Marc Dweck, president of Design Tech Services, Oakhurst, N.J. "They had to fill out an old-fashioned form and fax it to the main office where someone had to index it and figure out where to put it," Dweck said. "I had a family member that needed their services. We approached them about what they needed. They gave me this whole list. They were ecstatic over what we did. We had a 'reveal' event with plaques."

Pictured here are a server and other equipment the Big Apple Chapter was able to donate to Chevra Hatzalah.

Giving Thanks

The Big Apple chapter provided HP OfficeJet 6500 document scanners with OCR software, a server and some MFPs that will drastically cut the amount of time to process up to 60,000 calls a year, he said.

"From our perspective, we are a group with a lot of know-how. We try to figure out ways to partner together to increase business among ourselves. It's kind of a takeoff of a reality show, to give back to the community with all this power," said Robert Bello, vice president of sales and partner at Bit By Bit Computer Consultants, New York.

Here, Bello receives a plaque from a Chevra Hatzalah official for their contributions to the ambulance service.

Scanning Solution

The Big Apple chapter started its charitable initiative after taking part in a bike-building event at a VentureTech conference in New Orleans a couple of years ago, said John Iaccarino, president of Real Time Consultants, Mahwah, N.J.

"The feeling that night when the kids received their bikes affected all of us. We thought what can we do together on a more local level," Iaccarino said.

The charity initiatives have helped bond Big Apple VARs too, Bello said. He estimated that chapter members have closed more than $3 million in sales through collaborative efforts between at least two Big Apple members.