Adam Shannon and Casa Grande Medical Center employees enjoy the annual Turkey Trot.
Robert D. Putnam, a professor of public policy at Harvard University, once said; “What really matters from the point of view of social capital and civic engagement is not merely nominal membership, but active and involved membership.”
Civic engagement and community volunteerism are important contributors to quality of life on the local level. It benefits the local community when local residents get involved. Through someone’s own initiative, or through a community-focused employer, an individual can make a real difference in their city, town or county.
Quality of life ranks first on the mission statement for the city of Casa Grande, Arizona. The city, which lies between Phoenix and Tucson, was founded in 1879 and named after the Hohokam Indian Ruins. With 19 city-maintained parks and 17 miles of mountain hiking and biking trails along with an 18-hole golf course; the city is a great place for outdoor enjoyment.
Adam Shannon is a technology management senior manager at Banner Health’s Casa Grande Medical Center. Shannon has been involved with the city of Casa Grande through his employer and on his own.
“Casa Grande is a wonderful town. Nestled between Phoenix and Tucson off of I-10, you can’t miss the city. It has the small-town feel, although we are growing at a rapid rate,” Shannon says.
He says that the city has great technology manufacturing companies that have come to town; offering future growth.
“It has been a great place to raise a family, and you still get that country feel with the multiple farms around town. Casa Grande is an oasis in the desert for sure. We get plenty of sun and have plenty to get outside to do. It doesn’t have that full bustle of a large, big city; but we are growing fast,” Shannon says.
Shannon adds that he became interested in local community activity because of the leadership at his facility.
“I have been fortunate to get opportunities to be engaged with our facility within the community. I appreciate the action on behalf of the facility to reach out to the employees for these opportunities to get out there. It is so rewarding to interact with the community any opportunity we can get. It shows our level of commitment to those whom we serve. It is our way to give back to our community. This is truly done in a volunteer nature, which to me is more rewarding than anything,” Shannon says.
Adam Shannon is among the Banner Health employees who support the annual Electric Light Parade.
Shannon’s involvement with his local community has taken several forms and has always been rewarding.
“I have been involved in many aspects of the community over my tenure at Banner Casa Grande Medical Center. From coaching a local little league team and the hospital softball team (Code Blue), to helping out at many of the local health fairs, where we greet the community and offer information and listen to our community members on how we can be an even greater service to the community,” he says.
He also helps out at the city’s Veteran’s Day parades and other events in town.
“We also are proud to be part of our city’s largest event in the Electric Light Parade where businesses create floats, and we parade down the main boulevard for several miles and greet and entertain the community,” Shannon says.
“Our hospital-driven Turkey Trot is where we take the community members and exercise with them and do a two-mile walk or trot around the local community and end back at the hospital with a health fair. I also have engaged with the community to help clean blocks in the city to pick up trash. All of these items are coordinated through the facility, and it does not take long for me to sign right up. It is so great to be involved with the ones we serve,” Shannon adds.
He says that it is such a great feeling to engage with the local community.
“You can learn a lot from listening to the people. Sharing information back to our leadership and teams really provides a dynamic opportunity for improvement. Many of these events the hospital has sponsored, or been a part of, for over 20 years. A great standing tradition in where we can work together over multiple service lines to come up with something great,” Shannon says
He says that the staff at Banner Casa Grande are blessed and their facility works really close with the chamber of commerce.
“They are always sending out opportunities to attend chamber events to the employees; this is another good way to be involved with the community. Great opportunity to connect with them and really learn to see how the city functions,” Shannon says.
Shannon says that the pandemic has created some challenges in how he and his colleagues engage with the community. As an important tradition, they did not want to stop the Turkey Trot event, but they had to make some adjustments to how it was staged to focus on community safety.
“Instead of getting a group of community members together for exercise warm-ups and a large group jog, we set up a station in front of our hospital with goody bags and information that we gave to the people who stopped by in their cars. We encouraged the community to send pictures of them walking or exercising,” Shannon says,
He says that for the Electric Light Parade, the community decided on an Electric Light Tour, where many of the businesses and homes would decorate the front of businesses or homes and the community would drive around and vote on the best displays.
“It was fun being a part of that to be dressed up and part of the display. Greeting our community each car at a time at a good distance and see everyone’s excitement. These are few of the good things I get to be part of that really makes an impact,” he says.
What advice would Shannon give other biomeds who might want to become more involved with their local communities?
“Bring your ideas to leadership and committee members when a call for help goes out, even if it may feel way outside your comfort zone. Never act as if this is just for yourself. Think of helping out as doing our part to give back to the community that trusts us for their care. Some of the best times I have experienced are the thank you’s and the heartfelt gratitude when the community greets you in person. That is why I do the extra work,” Shannon says.
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