Community Commitment
January 18, 2024

Employees donate professional skills, expertise to support nonprofits

Volunteer program boosts impact, helps communities in need

Giving back to the communities Xcel Energy serves keeps our employees connected to the people and organizations working to build a sustainable future. From our annual Day of Service to our Giving Campaign, our workforce engages in hundreds of opportunities throughout the year that strengthen communities.  

One of the company’s newest initiatives, the Pro Bono Skills-based Volunteer Program, offers employees the opportunity to share their professional skills and talents with nonprofits. The selected nonprofits often lack adequate resources, such as staff or certain skill sets, which prevent them from advancing their mission, serving more people or making a greater impact. That’s where Xcel Energy employees come in.  

The purpose of the program, which started in 2021 with HandsOn Twin Cities, is to tap into employees’ talents and mobilize a team to drive positive change. Over six to eight weeks, employee volunteers enhance their leadership potential, foster teamwork and build professional relationships while using their skills for good.  

“There was a true sense of camaraderie on our team,” said Svetlana Mikhaylova, a principal HR project analyst at Xcel Energy. “We immediately connected with the nonprofit’s mission and vision and were able to learn just as much from the nonprofit’s leadership as they learned from us.” 

This past year, Xcel Energy partnered with seven nonprofit organizations throughout our service footprint, making an impact of over $270,000 for these organizations. Forty-one employees volunteered a total of 1,400 hours at Women Venture, Second Harvest Heartland and Neighborhood Development Center in Minnesota, Grand Forks Children’s Museum in North Dakota, Washington Pavilion in South Dakota, Foundation for Black Entrepreneurship in Colorado and Power of Perception in Wisconsin.  

At the Grand Forks Children’s Museum, which is raising funds to create a regional family and educational destination in 2025, Xcel Energy employees helped by setting up software and developing a strategic plan for potential donors and grant makers. The Xcel Energy Foundation has also committed to awarding the museum $100,000 in grant funds through the company’s strategic philanthropy program.  

“Xcel Energy’s pro bono program supported the Grand Forks Children’s Museum where we needed it the most,” said Sally Miskavige, vice president of the museum’s Operation Exploration Campaign. “We were able to get things accomplished at a pace and cost we would not have otherwise been able to achieve. We appreciate the support of such talented Xcel Energy volunteers in our effort to bring a children’s museum to Grand Forks.” 

Over the past four years, the pro bono program has helped 13 organizations and 70 Xcel Energy employees have provided 2,400 consulting hours, with a total value of services delivered equaling $464,100. Volunteers have provided a range of skills, from creating business and marketing plans to providing technology support and energy efficiency strategies. 
“Our employees represent a powerful force for change and have unique skills that can help nonprofits grow stronger and make a deeper impact,” said Sam Holsen, Social Investments manager for Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota. “Everyone involved in this program has seen the benefits – the nonprofits, the communities they serve and our employees. It’s an investment in diverse teams, volunteers and resources.” 

Learn more about Xcel Energy’s commitment to its communities.