The importance of corporate responsibility was highlighted by Covestro LLC leader Jerry MacCleary at a recent industry event in Pittsburgh.
At the Northeast U.S. Petrochemical Conference & Expo on June 20, MacCleary urged companies to engage with their communities. He outlined several business and civic initiatives designed to help build the Northeast region and make it stronger.
MacCleary pointed to education and workforce development programs, as well as diversity and inclusion efforts. He also highlighted Covestro's own social purpose work around sustainability with Sustainable Pittsburgh, CEOs for Sustainability and other programs.
"Employees want their companies to allow them to do social purpose work in the community," MacCleary said in a keynote address at the event. "This certainly squares with who Pittsburghers are and what they expect of local companies."
Pittsburgh-based Covestro LLC is the North American unit of Covestro AG of Leverkusen, Germany.
MacCleary, a Pittsburgh native, reminded attendees that the city "is the home of some of the greatest philanthropists of the 19th and 20th centuries — Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick and H.J. Heinz who lived by the motto, 'heart power is better than horse power.' … These traditions of social responsibility, caring, partnership and community building are intrinsic to the fabric of Pittsburgh and its people."
The Northeast U.S. region has drawn development attention in recent years because of newfound supplies of shale oil and gas in the region, primarily from the Marcellus and Utica shale fields. Shell Chemical is building a major plastics and petrochemicals complex near Pittsburgh, and other projects are being discussed for the region.
MacCleary will retire at the end of 2019 after a 40-year career with Covestro, a maker of polycarbonate, polyurethanes and other specialty materials. Pittsburgh-based Covestro was spun off from Bayer AG as an independent company in 2015.
Covestro posted sales of around $16.5 billion in 2018. The firm employs almost 17,000 worldwide.