|Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa accepts a $40,000 ceremonial check from ServiceMaster's Rick Ascolese.|
|ServiceMaster officials including Ascolese (left) review plans for installing a drip irrigation system at Berendo Middle School.|
|The ServiceMaster team installs grass at Crenshaw High School.|
MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa held his 2010 Mayor’s Day of Service event, earlier this month at four Los Angeles schools with the help of ServiceMaster. The company was the prime corporate sponsor of the Day of Service event and provided overall funding as well as volunteer work and in-kind contributions at two of the Day of Service’s featured schools — Crenshaw High School, and Berendo Middle School. This was the second year of the company’s participation in this event.
At Crenshaw High School, more than 50 ServiceMaster employees worked alongside members of the Crenshaw H.S. Eco Club, and others, in refurbishing gardens and creating a picnic and study area. They put down sod, seeded, dug up areas for gardens, amended garden beds and planted. In-kind work at Berendo Middle School by ServiceMaster employees occurred this past week and featured the installation of a drip irrigation system to support the construction and ongoing maintenance of a literacy garden.
At Hollenbeck Middle School, ServiceMaster representatives presented Mayor Villaraigosa with a check for $40,000. “We are delighted to sponsor this worthwhile event,” stated Rick Ascolese, president of TruGreen LandCare, one of ServiceMaster’s brands. “ServiceMaster is dedicated to supporting education. We not only recognize the value of healthy green spaces, we help create them and we are proud to be part of today’s events.” Ascolese also stated that “We believe healthy turf and landscaping not only helps clean the air, filter and protect groundwater, reduce carbon in the atmosphere, and lower temperatures, we believe that it can also provide a place where children can engage in healthier outdoor activity. In school settings, we are thrilled when healthy green space is translated into literacy gardens that can promote a peaceful atmosphere where students can more effectively focus on their school work and on academic achievement.”
Ascolese also noted the importance of the green industry—those individuals and employers that plant, cultivate and maintain green spaces across the U.S.—to the economy and the job market. Company-wide, ServiceMaster has approximately 30,000 associates across America with approximately 3,200 in California.
The closing ceremony was held at Hollenbeck Middle School and included a first-ever Farmer’s Market in the Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles. “We are dedicated to supporting Mayor Villaraigosa’s efforts to improve education through the Partnership for Los Angeles Schools and to bring the benefits of healthy turf and landscape to urban schools and students,” added Ascolese.