keeping connection donation

Special TDS program helps local businesses and nonprofits

TDS Telecommunications LLC (TDS®) proudly works side by side with local businesses to help strengthen the communities we serve.

The company recently marked a charitable milestone in south central Wisconsin. More than $12,000 has been donated over three years to TDS’ unique Keeping the Connection philanthropic program, designed to help keep businesses and nonprofits connected to chamber resources.

Utilizing funds donated by TDS, participating local chambers of commerce offer scholarships of discounted or waived membership fees to businesses and nonprofits who apply. To date, more than 24 businesses and nonprofits have been assisted through the program.

“Keeping the Connection is a way for us to give back to the business community,” said Associate Manager of Field Marketing, Laurie Gerner. “We created the program during the COVID pandemic and have continued it for the last few years because we keep hearing how it’s making a difference.”

Since early 2021, TDS has partnered with the chambers in Deforest, Elkhorn, Middleton, Sun Prairie, Sauk Prairie, Verona, and Waterford to administer the program and, with its most-recent donation, the Evansville Area Chamber of Commerce and Tourism. The Evansville chamber scholarships benefitted multiple businesses as well as a nonprofit—the Rock County Chapter of the Ice Age Trail Alliance.

“Becoming a member of local chambers is a way to let people know what the Ice Age Trail is,” said Dennis James, Chapter Coordinator for the Rock County Chapter of the Ice Age Trail Alliance. “This TDS scholarship means we have additional dollars we can spend to build more structures or buy materials for additional trail building. Any dollar helps!”

The Ice Age Trail is a thousand-mile footpath through some of Wisconsin’s most-picturesque natural areas and is only one of 11 National Scenic Trails. The trail is managed by the Ice Age Trail Alliance in partnership with the National Park Service and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

TDS’ philanthropic milestone is happening during its Week of Giving celebration. Now in its second year, TDS is increasing its philanthropic activities this holiday season through a companywide through themed giving events being held throughout TDS communities from Monday, Nov. 27 through Friday, Dec. 1.

One of the company’s core values is giving back to the communities it serves through TDS Cares initiatives. TDS Cares efforts occur throughout the year and through the Be Good Citizens program, TDS provides associates with 16 hours of paid time off every year to volunteer at the 501c3 organization of their choice.

For more information about TDS visit TDStelecom.com. For more information about the Ice Age Trail Alliance visit iceagetrail.org.

About Mark Schaaf

Mark is an associate manager of communications for TDS Telecom. Prior to TDS, he worked for 10 years as a journalist and four years in local government. When he's not writing blogs, you might find him at a live music venue, bike trail or baseball stadium. Mark lives in Milwaukee with Jordan and Pippin (his fiancé and cat -- not the Chicago Bulls legends).
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