2 N.J. residents among 5 global winners of prestigious AT&T Community Impact Award

Jackson (digital divide) and Perez (environment) selected for turning their passions into volunteer efforts for good in their communities

Two New Jersey residents — Jackie Jackson and Jay Perez — were among only five AT&T employees worldwide to win AT&T’s prestigious AT&T Community Impact Award.

The award celebrates and reinforces AT&T’s core values by recognizing exceptional employees doing good in their communities.

Aligning to the company’s social-good goals, the program recognizes employees making significant impacts volunteering with organizations addressing the digital divide; environment; and other causes. In addition, as part of their recognition, AT&T will contribute $15,000 to nonprofits identified by the winners.

Jackson, from Somerset County, was honored for her work to close the digital divide. Thanks to her efforts, Jobs for America’s Graduates New Jersey will receive a $15,000 contribution from AT&T.

Perez, from Bergen County, was honored for his work helping to protect the environment and promote sustainability. Thanks to his efforts, Sustainable Jersey will receive a $15,000 contribution from AT&T.

AT&T New Jersey President Joseph Divis said Jackson and Perez were well-deserving of the honor.

“From helping young people prepare for their futures to protecting our environment, Jackie and Jay truly are making a difference in their communities,” he said. “We are grateful for all they do; congratulate them for winning this prestigious award; and are proud to call them colleagues.”

The employees are as impressive as their efforts.

Jackson is a director, East Region sales and distribution, has worked for AT&T for 25 years and holds three patents in wireless voicemail technology and an MBA in business.

She is the New Jersey AT&T Connected Learning mentor coordinator and is a constant champion of building bridges to possibility outside of work. Her work in her community has impacted the lives of hundreds of underresourced students, including the recipients of STEM scholarships that she helped raise funds for and the countless students she has mentored through organizations including Jobs for Americas Graduates of New Jersey, Junior Achievement, the African American Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey and NAACP/Edison/Meutchen Chapter.

“Volunteering gives me purpose,” she said. “Our mentoring programs help connect students to career options and reinforce the value of attending college and studying in science, technology, engineering and math. Connecting changes everything and in this case, these mentoring experiences have exposed students to new career opportunities. I enjoy sharing limitless possibilities of education through AT&T Connected Learning to developing our future leaders.”

Perez is a senior counsel in the legal department and supports AT&T’s Global Connections Management and Network organizations. He also serves as an environmental champion in conjunction with AT&T’s Corporate Social Responsibility unit and has nearly 23 years with AT&T.

Perez said seeing the impact of pollution across the islands of Micronesia ignited his passion to protect the environment. He now focuses his energy on fighting climate change and educating the public about sustainability as chair of the Upper Saddle River Environmental Committee in New Jersey.

He and his team host seminars on many issues, including programs that educate the community on the benefits of solar power, composting and recycling. The committee also hosts Drive Electric Vehicle days that allow attendees to test-drive EVs. To facilitate EV adoption, Jay put his land-use law expertise to use and wrote a municipal ordinance to permit the installation of electric vehicle charging stations in his community.

“Act locally to reduce your impact globally,” he said.