Union Settlement Association and a team of Morgan Stanley professionals have won the fourth annual Strategy Challenge, Morgan Stanley’s signature skills-based volunteering program providing nonprofits with pro bono strategic consulting. Union Settlement Association, the oldest and largest social service agency in East Harlem, serves more than 13,000 low-income residents annually through effective early childhood, youth, adult education, seniors and mental health programs.
The Morgan Stanley Strategy Challenge pairs teams of outstanding Morgan Stanley professionals with nonprofit organizations across the country for eight weeks to provide pro bono strategic advice on scalability and growth issues including business model optimization, geographic and program expansion and new ventures. The participating nonprofits work on causes ranging from youth development and microfinance to arts and culture, and are based in San Francisco, Chicago and New York.
The teams presented their final recommendations in a competition at Morgan Stanley’s New York headquarters. The nonprofits associated with the top three teams - Union Settlement Association, Children’s Museum of Manhattan and Family & Children’s Agency - were presented cash grants of $25,000, $15,000 and $10,000, respectively, by Morgan Stanley Chairman and Chief Executive Officer James P. Gorman.
“We commend all the participants and wish the nonprofit organizations every success as they move forward with the recommendations they received from our dedicated volunteers,” said Gorman. “The annual Strategy Challenge reflects Morgan Stanley’s commitment to being a strong, reliable partner with people who are making a difference in our communities.”This year, the Morgan Stanley teams donated more than 8,000 hours, equivalent to a market value of approximately $1.2 million, based on standards developed by Pro Bono Action Tank. This figure does not capture the additional value that the actual recommendations and strategies bring to the nonprofits in areas such as productivity improvements, new revenue streams and more efficient business models. Over the past four years, the Strategy Challenge has cumulatively delivered over 22,500 hours to 51 nonprofit organizations.
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