Miles Charitable Division: Q&A with Parag Shah, CEO of Miles
This month, we’re talking with Parag Shah, Miles’ CEO about Miles for Smiles, one of the new divisions at Miles.
Q: What is Miles for Smiles?
A: Miles for Smiles is our charitable division of Miles — the arm of Miles that is focused on helping the communities where we practice.
Q: When was Miles for Smiles launched?
A: We launched the division this year and pulled the charitable committee together in January. Our committee represents all our offices and is a mix of neutrals and employees; its members have been instrumental in figuring out what this wing of Miles will look like.
Q: Why was Miles for Smiles created?
A: Companies have a responsibility to invest back into, and improve, the communities that have allowed them to thrive and succeed. It’s a symbiotic relationship. I think it’s a responsibility and duty for us to do that.
Q: How will Miles for Smiles work?
A: Anyone can just write a check, and the financial support is important to institutions, but what’s more important is the involvement we’ll have and the time we’ll put into the community.
We plan to establish relationships with organizations that people at Miles feel passionately about, including those that involve children, homelessness, domestic violence, and other issues. There are a lot of organizations doing great work, and we’re trying to figure out what their needs are and how to fill those needs.
We want to be able to share our time and resources with organizations that make a difference. This year we’ve chosen three different organizations to support, including Family Promise in Savannah, Hubbard House in Jacksonville, and Covenant House of Georgia in Atlanta. We’ll continue to support these organizations and will add more over the coming years. We plan to create long-term relationships with them so that over time we can make a meaningful difference.
Q: When was the first Miles for Smiles event?
A: We sponsored the 11th Annual Red Hot Chili Pepper 5K race in Savannah to support Family Promise on July 21st. In addition to our sponsorship, about one fourth of our staff participated in the race!
Q: What other events are you doing this year?
A: Our next event is the 29th Barbara Ann Campbell Memorial Breakfast on October 11th in Jacksonville to bring awareness for domestic violence; we will be sponsoring and participating in that. We’ll also be sponsoring the Sleep-out event on November 16th with the Covenant House of Georgia, to raise awareness about and funds for youth facing homelessness.