Thank You for Your Goodwill

Release date: November 24, 2021
Duration: 52min
Guest(s): Tim O’Neal and Will Fischbach
Tim O’Neal and Will Fischbach
 
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Tim O’Neal and Will Fischbach join Robert Kiyosaki on today’s episode. Will is a litigation partner at the firm of Tiffany and Bosco, and also serves as the Chairman of the Board of Goodwill of Central and Northern Arizona.

Will says he knew that Robert would appreciate the tour he gave and the in-depth look at Goodwill because of the innovation and entrepreneurship it (Goodwill) promotes. The ROC (Retail Operations Center) is Goodwill’s clearance center. Resellers, he says, will buy things in bulk, or by the pound, and resell them online. This is where the Goodwill e-commerce platform is, as well. This is where Goodwill sells jewelry and unique collectible items.

Will started his legal career in the Army as a judge advocate (JAG), served with the 82nd Airborne and the 100th Airborne, and served in Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. “You get to see the best and the worst of humanity, and really appreciate the opportunities we have here at home.” He was done serving by 2009 and joined Tiffany & Bosco, followed by serving on the Goodwill board of directors beginning in 2013. “Most people have shopped at Goodwill and donated to a Goodwill, but not everybody gets to fully appreciate what happens with the revenue that’s generated from the thrift retail.”

Will explains that the money generated through this thrift retail goes into social services and social innovation. The mission at Goodwill, he says, “is to end poverty through the power of work.” That means helping people build a resume to achieve basic skills, learn interview skills, and connect with employers.

“The way we look at it is we’re not offering people a handout, we’re offering them a handup.”---Will Fischbach

Tim O’Neal has been with Goodwill for nearly twenty-three years. He is currently the President and CEO of Goodwill. “Goodwill is truly the love of my life,” he says. “We have the most amazing people in the world that work in this organization.”

What motivates Tim, he says, are the things they are coming up with for the future, and what they offer in the community. “We provide over 200,000 free services to the community every year that helps around 100,000 people go out and find jobs, outside of Goodwill.”

“I think everybody knows our stores. Everybody knows they can clean out their closets and donate to us, but a lot of people don’t realize where those donations go or what they do.”--Tim O’Neal

The economic impact is over $2 billion. When you’re cleaning out your closets and donating to Goodwill, you really are helping your neighbors, your state. The vision of the organization is to end poverty and to do that through self-sufficiency.

One idea that Goodwill is working on is something called Adult High School. In most states, once you turn 22, you are unable to attend high school. Goodwill is working with state legislators to remove that restriction, and open Excel Centers; an adult high school that will give these folks a chance at a diploma. The idea is to overcome two of the biggest barriers that adults who would benefit from this program have by offering childcare and transportation. The program helps these young adults come out earning a better wage, with certified skills and a job waiting for them.

From the business standpoint, Tim says, having a qualified workforce and an educated workforce allows businesses to move to Arizona. The education system in Arizona, he admits, lacks and is an obstacle for new businesses opening in Arizona. “We had an economic impact study done on this school (Excel Centers) and it shows any investment from the State is paid back within the first two years.”

It becomes a cash positive to the state of Arizona, and a cash positive to the individuals. Tim says they are also getting into some ideas for housing, affordable and traditional, workforce housing, and more.

The ROC center, Will says, is a 300,000 square foot facility that houses the clearance center. That is where they sell donated goods by the pound, usually to resellers. These resellers look through all of these items and take things that they believe they can resell, usually online, for a profit. Will says they can make a pretty good living that way.

Tim shares that Goodwill of Arizona has approximately 5,000 employees. Next year, they’ll have 11 new stores opening in areas they never had stores before. Every time they do that, he says they add 35-50 jobs per location.

Will and Tim both ask that you consider donating to Goodwill, as it helps support your neighbors to get back on their feet.

For a tour of the Arizona Goodwill ROC facility, visit goodwillaz.com and submit your request as a question.

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