Programs Involving ISSA Charities Highlighted During General Business Meeting

ISSA Charities Board Co-Chair Ted Stark highlighted three signature charitable programs of the association during the recent ISSA Show North America. They are: ISSA Scholars, The Hygieia Network, and Cleaning For A Reason.

“ISSA Scholars is our original charity, supporting students with scholarships for higher education. Since 1988, we have provided over $4 million in scholarship funds, to over 1,500 students,” Stark said, during the General Business Meeting at this year’s ISSA Show.

He added that 49 high school graduates and continuing education students collectively received $142,000 in funding for 2023, as part of the ISSA Scholars program. Online applications will soon be open for 2024 scholarships. Applications will be available at

Stark also discussed The ISSA Hygieia Network (, dedicated to the advancement and retention of women in the global cleaning industry by fostering diversity and inclusion. The ISSA Hygieia Network provides education, mentoring, networking, and support programs to help women succeed and advance in the workplace. Hygieia has expanded its online presence with the launch of the ISSA Hygieia Network Career Academy. It provides access to virtual conferences and webinars in association with ISSA’s online learning center platform.

“In 2023, 1,200 people participated in Hygieia’s educational conferences and webinars across the U.S. and internationally. Hygieia also continues to see growth with its mentoring programs, through its connection with industry professionals. Hygieia’s membership now tops 2,000,” Stark said.

He also spoke highly of The Hygieia Network’s ninth annual awards program, which took place during the 2023 ISSA Show. It was later announced that over 1,300 industry professionals attended the event. The 2023 awards and winners are:

  • ISSA Hygieia Network Member of the Year,which recognizes a woman’s involvement in activities that align with Hygieia’s mission and vision, went to Linda Silverman, Executive Chair of the Board of Directors, Maintex, for her dedication to Hygieia and efforts to grow its impact over the past year.
  • ISSA Hygieia Network Rising Star of the Year,which honors a woman aged 45 or younger who has made significant achievements and demonstrated consistent upward mobility in her career within the industry, was presented to Elizabeth Hawver, Vice President of Wholesale and Office Distribution, Essity, for her impressive career trajectory and achievements within the cleaning industry.
  • ISSA Hygieia Network Company of the Year,which celebrates a company’s involvement in activities that align with Hygieia’s mission and vision, was awarded to Nilfisk, for its contributions to advancing the role of women in the cleaning industry and increasing diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace.
  • ISSA Hygieia Network Mentor of the Year,which acknowledges a woman who has shown great leadership qualities and support to her mentee via the ISSA Hygieia Network Mentoring Program, was presented to Laura Craven, Vice President of Marketing and Communications, Imperial Dade, for her commitment to furthering women’s careers within the cleaning industry.
  • ISSA Hygieia Network International Member of the Year,which praises a person’s involvement in activities outside of the United States that align with Hygieia’s mission and vision, was presented to Shannon Hall, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Dustbane Products Limited, for her extended efforts in supporting Hygieia’s mission.
  • ISSA Hygieia Network Ally of the Year,which recognizes a person who has shown tremendous support toward Hygieia’s mission, was awarded to Andrew Clement, Chief Customer Officer, Kimberly Clark Professional, as well as Jeff Roberts, Chief Operating Officer, Envoy Solutions, for their encouragement and dedication to the impact that Hygieia has offered to women in the cleaning industry.

The Hygieia Network also acknowledged the 2023 Hygieia Network Scholarship recipient An’Najia Tucker, who is pursuing a biology/pre-med degree at Florida A&M University.

The third ISSA Charities signature program that Stark spoke about is Cleaning For A Reason, which provides free home cleaning for patients with cancer. Founded in 2006 by residential cleaning contractor Debbie Sardone, it became part of ISSA Charities in 2017.

“The organization is projected to serve 5,400 cancer patients by the end of this year, which is a 22 percent increase from 2022; engage with 1,300 cleaning partners, a 9 percent increase from last year; and raise $581,000 to support the cause, a 10 percent increase from 2022,” Stark reported. “All three ISSA Charities are focused on making a positive impact in our communities and within the entire cleaning industry. They have made tremendous progress this year in increasing engagement and awareness of ISSA’s mission, while gaining sponsors, and in turn, reaching more people with increased programs and services.”

Maintenance Sales News Editor Harrell Kerkhoff contributed to this article.

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