Excellus BCBS Inspires Volunteerism Among Employees

Brent Bish, Senior Vice President and Chief Actuary for Actuarial Services at Excellus BCBS, volunteers for the American Diabetes Association (ADA) in honor of his son, Graeme.

“My family’s life changed when my son was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at 3 years old,” explains Brent. “Out of those challenges came an opportunity to raise awareness by volunteering for the ADA.”

Brent poses with son and wife at the annual golf event

From fundraising to advocacy, Brent supports the ADA in their journey for research and, ultimately, a cure. This year, he joined the Leadership Board, and although he appreciates the opportunity to give back, the most rewarding part of his involvement with the ADA is setting an example for his son by giving back to an organization that means so much to their family.

“My dream is that one day Graeme will grab a cup of coffee and a donut without worrying about his blood sugar,” says Brent.

To help his son reach that dream, Brent realized much needed funds are required for research, clinical trials and programming, so in 2019 Brent started the ADA golf tournament.  The first year $2,000 was raised by 38 participants. Two years later, there were 127 participants and $12,300 was raised. This year, the 2023 event will direct funds to Camp Aspire – a week-long summer camp for children with diabetes between the ages of 8 and 17.

Finding a cause and volunteering with them is encouraged in our Lifetime Way Culture, and with so many not-for-profits in our regions, there is sure to be an organization you can align with.

“It’s simple – find something you’re passionate about and reach out to a related organization to see how you can get involved,” explains Brent. “For me and my family, it’s diabetes, but there is no shortage of causes that need support. Most importantly, volunteer for the right reasons. Be genuine and helpful. Your time will not be wasted.”

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