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The City Journals

Promise SSL wins the Utah Ethical Leadership Award

Oct 14, 2019 02:32PM ● By Bill Hardesty

Bill Crim, President/CEO at United Way of Salt Lake, Mayor Cherie Wood, Bonnie Owens, Deputy Director of Promise SSL, and Domoina Kendell, Deputy Director of Promise SSL at the Utah Ethical Leadership award breakfast where they Promise SSL was won the award in the government category. (Courtesy of South Salt Lake City)

By Bill Hardesty | [email protected]

On Sept. 6, Promise South Salt Lake was awarded the Utah Ethical Leadership Award for the government category. Mayor Cherie Wood accepted the award for the city.

"This program recognizes leadership in Utah businesses, nonprofit organizations, and government entities that embody best practices in ethical behaviors," according to the Community Foundation of Utah website.

The awards are a collaboration of the Community Foundation of Utah, the Daniels Fund, and the Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative at the University of Utah’s David Eccles School of Business. The awards are sponsored by Utah Business Magazine and the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute at the University of Utah.

The award is designed to recognize ethical leadership in honor of Bill Daniels, a founder of the modern cable industry and owner of the Utah Stars of the ABA. Daniels believed that ethnics and integrity are key elements of successful leadership. Before his death, he founded the Daniels Fund.

"The Promise South Salt Lake initiative motto came from my desire that  'What I want for myself and for my family, I want for every person in my community.' Knowing we had complex problems, we took an all-encompassing look at solutions. Promise South Salt Lake Councils are comprised of city leaders, residents, partners and business supporters. Together we are implementing dynamic action plans to improve conditions and quality of life for residents in the critical areas of education, health, safety, jobs and economy, housing, arts and community, and neighborhoods. We know that the longevity of our programs and success are dependent on ethical practices. Stakeholders must know and trust that they will be met with integrity and fairness with every interaction," said Wood in her acceptance speech.

Earlier government winners include the Utah Legislative Offices, the Lowell Bennion Community Service Center and the Utah Developmental Disability Council.

The process

Nominees for the Utah Ethical Leadership Awards are judged against the Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative Principles: 

Integrity – Act with honesty in all situations 

Trust – Build trust in all stakeholder relationships 

Accountability – Accept responsibility for all decisions 

Transparency – Maintain open and truthful communications 

Fairness – Engage in fair competition and create equitable and just relationships 

Respect – Honor the rights, freedoms, views, and property of others 

Rule of Law – Comply with the spirit and intent of laws and regulations 

Viability – Create long-term value for all relevant stakeholders

Julie Taylor, public relations coordinator of South Salt Lake, provided two examples how Promise SSL demonstrate these principles.

Trust: “Our work in the community, with residents and partners began in 2008. Over time, we have established a strong foundation of trust. Our families and the youth we serve thrive on stability. We are seeing far less transition in families and watching our youth flourish in place. The foundation of trust has enabled youth to grow up in our programs and then return to work for Promise SSL to give back to the community.”

Viability: “An additional principle our work aligns with is viability. From the onset, we knew the longevity of Promise SSL would rely heavily on strong partnerships. We are fortunate to have United Way of Salt Lake, Granite School District, many local educational institutions and nonprofits seeking solutions to our resident’s challenges and ensuring their success. We utilize data in a responsive way to guide our planning, demonstrate success and identify gaps. We don’t just value how far we have come, we are constantly refocusing on where we are going to go.” 

Since the benefits of Promise SSL are available across the city, the current focus is for deeper rooted programs and initiatives to improve the lives of residents. These efforts target specific needs such food security, health care and government access.