November 8, 2011

SANTA ANA--When Brea-based Beckman Coulter Inc. gathers 100 of its senior leaders from around the world to do good work in Orange County, it calls on OneOC as a matchmaker.

Beckman Coulter, which makes medical testing equipment and supplies, does it every year.

OneOC, a Santa Ana-based nonprofit formerly known as Volunteer Center Orange County, matches Beckman executives to worthy tasks that it organizes.

Most recently that meant sending a bunch of them to dig up tree stumps, plant, paint and take care of other chores for the Boys and Girls Club in Fullerton.

OneOC based the match on the desires of the company and the needs of the nonprofit.

"The Beckman executives wanted to do something for kids, and they weren't afraid to get their hands dirty," said Daniel McQuaid, chief executive of OneOC.  "They were assured of the fact that they wouldn't be standing on their shovels."

The matchmaking has a two-fold payoff: Nonprofits get volunteer help, and businesses have the chance to give tangible community contributions.

OneOC charges a fee to companies looking for the right volunteer opportunity and has ramped up services for fellow nonprofits.

It helps place business leaders on the boards of local groups, trains nonprofit entrepreneurs and board members, helps charities improve their business plans and provides accounting services.

"This is a fairly unique nonprofit," said Arnold Pinkston, a OneOC board member and vice president and general counsel for Beckman Coulter.  "We can make all of the nonprofits more valuable."

Pinkston got involved with OneOC following the lead of Robert Hurley, now interim chief executive at Beckman and a former member of the nonprofit's board.

"He's a guy with a lot of principles," Pinkston said.  "He's a guy I look up to and trust."

Giving back to the community is part of the corporate culture at Beckman, Pinkston said.

"Beckman Coulter has 75 years in the community," he said.  "Our founder, Arnold Beckman, was a big philanthropist."

Other OneOC board members include Julie Sokol, senior vice president for information technology at Irvine Company; Steven Vogeding, retired vice president of Huntington Beach-based Boeing Capital Corp.; and Sheryl Vaughan, a senior vice president at Bank of America Corp.

OneOC charges other nonprofits fees for some services.  The fees makes up 65% of its $13 million annual budget.

Other Services

Another piece of income are fees earned by serving as the accounting office for the Orange County Funders Roundtable, consisting of companies such as Oakland-based Kaiser Permanente, which has hospitals in Irvine and Anaheim, Wells Fargo & Co. and Bank of America.

The roundtable members pool donations to help bolster the county's nonprofits.  OneOC distributes the money to designated charities.

"They don't have to deal with the financial accounting," McQuaid said.  "We act as the business office."

OneOC also has a contract with the Health Funders Partnership of Orange County, a group that works to improve healthcare services.

Health Funders members include Pacific Life Insurance Co. and Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian in Newport Beach, and Corona del Mar's Samueli Foundation.

OneOC handles about $4 million worth of contracts from groups that pool their money.

It also serves as a business office of sorts for one-time fundraisers.

David Moore, one of the founders of Santa Ana-based vocational school operator Corinthian Colleges Inc., held a dinner with his wife to raise money following the earthquake in Haiti last year.  OneOC managed the distribution of money from the donors.

"They were able to take advantage of our status as a tax-exempt organization," McQuaid said.

Costa Mesa's Someone Cares Soup Kitchen calls on OneOC when it needs extra help.

OneOC places volunteers through its court referral program with the county, sending people with minor criminal offenses to various community service jobs.

The orange-vested California Department of Transportation workers seen cleaning up the highway are placed through OneOC.

OneOC also has a stable of senior volunteers who help police officers throughout the county with some paperwork and other simple, necessary tasks.  It frees up the police department to keep officers on the streets, McQuaid said.

The group's annual fundraiser is a volunteer recognition ceremony that draws about 1,000 people.  Philanthropist Mindy Stearns and her husband Glenn Stearns, founder of Santa Ana-based mortgage lender Stearns Cos., have hosted the event for the past couple of years.

Mindy Stearns does the birdcalls that brought her fame on Oprah Winfrey's show, said Scott Tempel, a OneOC board member and assistant vice president of Corinthian Collegs.

Tempel, who's served on the board for five years, helps out with OneOC's traditional fundraising by finding sponsors and soliciting donations.  Tempel said he honed those skills while running his own nonprofit for children with brain injuries 12 years ago.

Now donors around the county know that "when an e-mail is coming from Scott Tempel they have to smile a bit because they know what's coming," he said.


As nonprofits look to do more with less, OneOC also has boosted its consultancy services.

"Nonprofits are looking for ways to provide better services," McQuaid said.

OneOC has a number of consultants on its staff of 30.  It also taps a pool of 70 independent consultants locally.

McQuaid personally is working with Pacific Symphony to strengthen its business plan.  He's also helping with leadership development for Salinas-based Kinship Center, which offers adoption services across the state, including OC.

McQuaid introduced consulting and business services since becoming OneOC's chief executive five years ago.

The name change came a few months ago.

"We've outgrown the name Volunteer Center because we do more," McQuaid said.

The effort to rebrand the group was a collaboration.  Irvine-based advertising agency RiechesBaird helped come up with a name and devise a rebranding campaign.

OneOC spent $100,000 but "got far more in in-kind contributions," McQuaid said.

Irvine Co.'s Sokol helped bolster OneOC's website.  Rhythm Interactive Inc., based in Irvine, designed the site.  Jim deYong, retired founder of Santa Ana-based DGWB Advertising & Communications, helped with the proofreading of marketing materials.

Costa Mesa-based Rutan & Tucker LLP and associate Heather Herd, a member of the OneOC board, helped out on the legal end of the name change.  Allergan Inc.'s foundation, Wells Fargo and Bank of America are among the companies that sponsored a launch of the new name with an event in September at the Orange County Museum of Art.

The name has stuck.

"It's a great way to tie the county together," McQuaid said.

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