Reviving Flint, Mich.'s, fortunes one employee and job at a time

There's no way to sugarcoat it. Over the past two decades, Flint, Mich., headquarters city for Diplomat Specialty Pharmacy, had become a poster child for urban decline.

Thanks to massive renewal efforts by Diplomat and many other locally based corporate citizens, however, Flint's story is far from over.

"Because of Diplomat's long-standing loyalty to and belief in the city of Flint, much of our community rebuilding initiatives are focused on outreach in the city and surrounding areas," the company noted.

Among those initiatives: a three-year program to help lower-income and formerly homeless women become self-sufficient providers for their families, in partnership with St. Luke's N.E.W. Life Center. The center provides career training and job placement in a small business that makes hospital scrubs and other products.

"When we started helping them, there were seven part-time employees," Hagerman said. "They're now up to 26 full-time employees, ...and the goal for next year is to have 100 women gainfully employed."

On a broader front, the company partnered with CareSource Michigan and the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan to deliver what it calls "the first comprehensive chronic kidney disease program incorporating both disease management and medication therapy management."

"We also value and support the NKFM Kids' Camp and drug bank program," Diplomat reported.

The company also envisions giving back to the community on a more fundamental level — by helping thousands of patients obtain the medicines they need, regardless of cost. Indeed, providing funding assistance for patients is a self-described "fundamental part" of Diplomat's corporate mission, the company noted. Diplomat was able to find and access more than $19 million for patients in need in 2012.

Diplomat's efforts as both a corporate citizen and an employer have won praise from public and private groups, including:

  • The Michigan Economic Development Corp.;
  • Honors from the Detroit Free Press as one of Michigan's top workplaces; and
  • Awards from Inc. magazine as one of the nation's Top 100 Job Creators, and one of Inc.'s Fastest-Growing Private Companies in America.
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