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LaBella in the Community (LINC) – Spring 2024 Roundup


LaBella in the Community (LINC) is our employee-led, grassroots, committee-based service program that organizes volunteer opportunities to build and advance community partnerships. LINC was very busy this spring and we’d like to take a moment to highlight some of the activities the group planned and coordinated throughout the local communities where we live and work.

More details about the organizations that LINC partnered with can be found by clicking the links below. To learn more about what LINC has been up to, keep scrolling!


Pediatric Pantry Restock

Organization: Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center in conjunction with Capes4Kids
Event Date: February 12–26, 2024
Event Location: Buffalo, NY

Event Description: Capes4Kids creates handmade capes for young superheroes in Roswell Comprehensive Cancer Center’s (RPCCC) pediatric unit. LaBella donated items to help restock the Pediatric Pantry at RPCCC in conjunction with Capes4Kids’ 2nd Annual Maker’s Event. Additionally, Rosalie Constable participated in the Maker’s Event, and Kathy Kogut made capes ahead of time in support of the initiative.

2024 VEX Robotics Southern New England Championship

Organization: Connecticut Technology and Engineering Education Association
Event Date: February 25–27, 2024
Event Location: Bridgeport, CT

Event Description: The Connecticut Technology of Engineering Education Association (CTEEA) is a professional teacher’s organization dedicated to advancing STEM education across New England. In February 2024, CTEEA, in collaboration with the Bridgeport Islanders, hosted the 2024 VEX Robotics Southern New England Championship at Total Mortgage Arena in Bridgeport, Connecticut.

During this three-day event, the top 80 teams from Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island battled it out to receive one of the 18 spots available to attend the VEX Robotics World Championship, which was held in April in Dallas, Texas. LaBella employee Dakota McDonough coached teams for the event. Additionally, several of the teams supported by our sponsorship advanced to the world championship!

ACE Mentor Program of Rochester Graduation

Organization: ACE Mentor Program of Rochester
Event Date: March 22, 2024
Event Location: Rochester, NY

Event Description: The ACE Mentor Program of Rochester introduces high school students in the Rochester area to the wide range of career opportunities available to young people in the architecture, construction, and engineering fields, as well as related areas of the building design and construction industry.

At weekly meetings, industry professionals from leading area firms volunteer their time to work directly with and mentor student teams as they design hypothetical projects and gain hands-on experience in solving the types of design, engineering, and construction challenges industry professionals confront every day. This year’s team of LaBella mentors comprised Katie Burns, Camille Cosmiano, Calvin Leung, Aika Aussicker, Jessie Woughter, and Barbara Burke.

This graduation event at the Memorial Art Gallery marked the end of the 2023–2024 program. Students presented their projects in front of an audience of more than 200 people consisting of friends, family, and industry professionals, and $36,000 in scholarships were awarded!

2024 Charlotte CANstruction

Organization: AIA Charlotte
Event Date: April 2024
Event Location: Charlotte, NC

Event Description: Hosted by AIA Charlotte, Charlotte CANstruction is an annual exhibit and design competition that brings AEC professionals together to create colossal structures built entirely out of canned goods. Every can and dollar are donated to the Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina.

LaBella’s Charlotte office embraced their inner child creativity for the 2024 Charlotte CANstruction competition, earning them the Jurors’ Favorite award and donating 2,000 cans of food to the Greater Charlotte Community! For over 120 years, Crayola crayons have brought smiles to children’s faces. LaBella is committed to combating childhood hunger so that kids can be kids, enjoying every crayon in the box.

Our team proudly planned, designed, and constructed the over 8-foot-tall “LaBella Crayola Color Frenzy” CANstructure, featuring a crayon-filled Crayola box and a LaBella brand green crayon that jumped out of the box. In total, 2,000 food cans were used to create our CANstruction, all of which were donated to the Greater Charlotte Community!

e-Scrap for Camp

Organization: Sunnking Electronics Recycling, Inc.
Event Date: April 3–15, 2024
Event Location: Rochester, NY

Event Description: Sunnking created e-Scrap for Camp to support Camp Good Days, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for children, adults, and families whose lives are impacted by cancer and other life challenges. Funds raised through recycling local business electronics are donated to support programs and services offered by Camp Good Days.

This annual event’s combined efforts make a huge difference, not only to those affected by the disease but also by ensuring safe and responsible recycling of unwanted devices. Since its establishment in 2010, e-Scrap for Camp has collected and recycled over 6.5 million pounds of electronics, resulting in over $150,000 donated to Camp Good Days on behalf of Sunnking.

SunnKing dropped off two pallets at LaBella’s Rochester office for employees to fill with e-scrap, and we were able to nearly fill both pallets! The collected e-scrap will be processed by Sunnking and a monetary donation—based on the number of pounds of e-scrap collected—will be made to Camp Good Days.

Fabulous Vegas Night Fundraiser

Organization: Greece Residents Assisting Stray Pets
Event Date: April 6, 2024
Event Location: Rochester, NY

Event Description: Greece Residents Assisting Stray Pets (GRASP) is a not-for-profit pet rescue and adoption organization committed to reducing the number of homeless pets in Greece, New York, by decreasing dog and cat reproduction, promoting responsible pet ownership, and placing homeless dogs and cats into loving, permanent homes.

Held at Barnard Party House in Rochester, GRASP’s Fabulous Vegas Night Fundraiser was jam-packed with gaming tables, auctions, raffle prizes, food, and entertainment. The event also provided attendees with an opportunity to meet GRASP coordinators, other GRASP volunteers, and community members that support GRASP’s efforts. All proceeds from the fundraising event directly benefit GRASP and the homeless animals served by the organization. This year’s event was attended by Catherine Thompson and Allison Linne.

Seeds & Baby Trees

Organization: Niagara County Soil and Water Conservation District 
Event Date: April 22, 2024
Event Location: Buffalo, NY

Event Description: The Niagara County Soil and Water Conservation District, a local government subdivision created in 1954, serves as a public benefit to Niagara County. Through its annual tree and shrub program, the District sells and distributes seedlings and transplants to landowners, aiding in the conservation and restoration of natural resources and wildlife habitat in Niagara County. Each spring, approximately 30,000 seedlings are packaged and distributed by the District.

This year, employees from our Buffalo office purchased more than $400 worth of trees, seedlings, and seed packs from the District. These will be planted in support of the District and its mission to conserve resources and promote environmental sustainability.

2024 Volunteer Spring Workday

Organization: Rebuilding Together Saratoga County
Event Date: April 27, 2024
Event Location: Ballston Spa, NY

Event Description: Rebuilding Together Saratoga County, an affiliate of the national Rebuilding Together organization, was founded in 2003 to provide home repair services to Saratoga County homeowners in need. The organization coordinates volunteers, contractors, tools, and supplies to make necessary repairs at no cost to homeowners, focusing on older adults, individuals living with disabilities, active and retired members of the armed services, and families with children.

LaBella employees from our Ballston Spa office volunteered with Rebuilding Together Saratoga County to help clean up a local resident’s yard that was full of leaves and debris. The team filled an entire dumpster and 18 bags with leaves!

Eclipse Glasses Recycling

Organization: Astronomers Without Borders
Event Date: April 2024–May 2024
Event Location: Rochester, Buffalo, and Albany, NY; and Cleveland, OH

Event Description: Following the April 8th total solar eclipse, several LaBella offices collected eclipse glasses (103 in total!) for donation to Astronomers Without Borders. This organization has been recycling and distributing solar glasses across the world for annular and total solar eclipses since 2008.

The donated glasses will be checked for safety and authenticity before being packaged and stored for future distribution to individuals who may not otherwise have a safe way to view an eclipse. With at least two solar eclipses occurring somewhere on Earth each year, there will be plenty of opportunities to reuse these glasses.

2024 Capital Region CANstruction

Organization: Capital Region CANstruction
Event Date: May 2024
Event Location: Albany, NY

Event Description: Capital Region CANstruction is an annual exhibit and design competition that brings AEC professionals together to create colossal structures built entirely out of canned goods. Every can and dollar are donated to The Food Pantries for the Capital District. The 2024 Capital Region CANstruction theme was Dream STEAM: If you CAN Dream it, STEAM it (STEAM = Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Math).

Team LaBella took it back to basic biology. Five months of brainstorming, designing, fundraising, and coordinating produced “The Mighty Chondrion”, a human cell structure standing at 3½ feet tall and 8 feet wide. Canned beats and jarred oranges make up the nucleus, peanut butter for the lysosome, bagged rice as the Golgi apparatus, JELL-O for the endoplasmic reticulum, and travel shampoo as ribosomes.

The structure embraces the STEAM theme while highlighting the importance food plays in the health of a human cell. In total, more than 2,400 food and personal care items were used to create our CANstruction, all of which were donated to Capital Region food pantries following the event.

Adopt-A-Stream Charlotte

Organization: City of Charlotte
Event Date: May 2024
Event Location: Charlotte, NC

Event Description: As part of the City of Charlotte’s Adopt-A-Stream program, LaBella has taken ownership of a half-mile segment of the Dairy Branch Stream just off Ideal Way to Magnolia Avenue in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Twice a year (in the spring and the fall), we remove litter to clean the stream. We also test the water, observe stream quality, and report back to the City and Mecklenburg County on our observations.

I Love My Park Day 2024

Organization: Parks & Trails New York, New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, and New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
Event Date: May 4, 2024
Event Location: Pleasantville and Delmar, NY

Event Description: I Love My Park Day is a statewide event dedicated to improving and enhancing New York’s parks and historic sites, raising awareness of the entire park system and its needs. Coordinated by Parks & Trails New York in partnership with the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, the annual event offers opportunities to clean up parks and beaches, plant trees and gardens, restore trails and wildlife habitat, and remove invasive species, among other site improvement projects.

Volunteers from across the state participate in these efforts. This year, LaBella volunteers contributed by clearing invasive plants, pulling vines, and removing trees to enhance the trail and view of the Hudson River at Rockefeller State Park Preserve in Pleasantville, New York. Additionally, LaBella volunteers helped pot oak saplings, remove invasive species, and plant native vegetation to support the Five Rivers Environmental Education Center’s wildlife habitat in Delmar, New York.


Organization: New York State Department of Transportation
Event Date: May 11, 2024
Event Location: Rochester, NY

Event Description: As part of the New York State Department of Transportation’s Adopt-A-Highway program, LaBella has adopted a section of Interstate 490 (that our firm designed) near Bushnell’s Basin.

Each year, volunteers spend several hours on a Saturday morning assisting in roadway cleanup. On this day, our team of volunteers was comprised of Walter Kaniecki, Kelly Sweet, Jennifer Wildrick, and David Wong.

“I Remember Mama” Campaign

Organization: Volunteers of America – Upstate New York
Event Date: May 12, 2024
Event Location: Rochester, NY

Event Description: For more than 35 years, Volunteers of America’s “I Remember Mama” campaign has partnered with local senior living communities to honor elderly women who have outlived or are separated from their families on Mother’s Day.

This year, the organization distributed more than 200 gift baskets filled with flowers, treats, and other gifts to residents and clients at Catholic Charities, Cobblestone Place, Danforth Towers Apartments, Hudson Ridge, Jonathan Child Apartments, Jordan Health, and Montgomery Neighborhood Center.

In support of this initiative, a group of LaBella employees collected and donated multiple boxes of costume jewelry, perfumes, neck scarves, boxed flavored teas, candy, chocolates, cookies, flowers, notebooks, and other small gifts.

Annual David R. Millis Memorial Golf Tournament

Organization: Richard Knights / Sue Kaderli Memorial Fund
Event Date: May 19, 2024
Event Location: Batavia, NY

Event Description: The David R. Millis Memorial Golf Tournament raises funds for the Richard Knights / Sue Kaderli Memorial Fund, which supports Orleans County cancer patients and their families by covering expenses such as prescriptions, medical insurance, nutritional supplements, hospital beds, and other medical supplies. LaBella sponsored a team of golfers for this event, including Tony Sanganetti, Mike Simon, and Steve Longway.

National Rescue Dog Day Fundraiser

Organization: No Greater Love Rescue
Event Date: May 20, 2024
Event Location: Latham, NY

Event Description: National Rescue Dog Day is observed annually on May 20th to raise awareness about the large number of dogs in shelters across the country that deserve a forever home.

A LaBella employee—and passionate dog lover—spearheaded this fundraising effort to celebrate all the rescue dogs within LaBella. Staff at our Latham, New York, office were encouraged to submit photos of their rescue dogs to be displayed on the office lobby TV and consider making a charitable contribution to the rescue organization of their choice.

Thanks to employee contributions and a LINC match, we donated $640 to No Greater Love Rescue, a nonprofit animal rescue organization dedicated to rescuing, rehabilitating, and rehoming animals in need.

United Way Day of Caring

Organization: United Way of Greater Rochester and the Finger Lakes
Event Date: May 23, 2024
Event Location: Rochester, NY

Event Description: The United Way’s Day of Caring is the largest community-wide volunteer event across the Finger Lakes region, serving Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, Wayne, and Wyoming counties. The event provides volunteers with the opportunity to connect with coworkers, friends, and family to spend the day helping local nonprofit organizations.

As part of this year’s United Way Day of Caring, volunteers from LaBella assisted with weeding, planting, and mulching along the Thomas R. Frey trail at El Camino and throughout Conkey Corner Park.

Mayfield Heights Spring Beautification Day

Organization: City of Mayfield Heights
Event Date: May 24, 2024
Event Location: Mayfield Heights, OH

Event Description: LaBella employees at our Cleveland office volunteered their time to help improve the appearance of a local pocket park located at one of the gateway junctures into Mayfield Heights. LaBella donated planting materials (plants, soil, and mulch), and our volunteers weeded, mulched, and planted new plants and trees for the citizens of Mayfield Heights to enjoy.