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Case Management Nurse Consultant, Cranbury, New Jersey

A component of engagement is Aetna's fundamental belief that employees are encouraged to give back to their communities. As a result, the company strongly supports employees' volunteerism and giving efforts. In 2008 alone, Aetna employees contributed more than $5.7 million in volunteerism and matching gifts. Each year, Aetna recognizes an individual employee for his or her efforts through the Aetna Employee Voice of Conscience® Award.

In 2008, Marie Alfano, RNC, CCM, was honored with this award. She was selected for exemplifying the humanitarian ideals of tennis legend and former Aetna board member Arthur R. Ashe, Jr., to whom the award is a tribute. The award recognizes Aetna employees who, like Ashe, have distinguished themselves by their achievements in education, equality, the advancement of human rights and civic leadership.

Alfano volunteers hundreds of hours each year to improve the lives of children. She has done everything from organizing toy drives to founding a nonprofit organization, Children at Heart, Inc., dedicated to making the dreams of children in need a reality. Local schools, government agencies, and business and community organizations have all been drawn into her vision of helping every child in need; and they are her frequent collaborators and supporters. She also has inspired her coworkers to knit headscarves for patients in the local hospital oncology units.

As a result of her boundless compassion and leadership, families who might not have dreamed it possible now have electricity, clothing, medical equipment, toys and even plane tickets to visit relatives.

Alfano also was honored with a Daily Point of Light award from The Points of Light Institute & HandsOn Network, the largest volunteer and citizen action network in the nation. Click here to visit the site.

Employees such as Marie Alfano help Aetna's efforts to build healthier communities. And Aetna's support of employee giving and volunteerism inspires employees to do more.   [Click here to read the transcript of this employee's story]

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