Goodwill Receives over $4 Million in Grants from DOL



Erol Onel, the vice president of Heron Therapeutics, has a strong track record of success with international regulatory authorities and various divisions of the FDA. Committed to helping others outside of the medical realm, Erol Onel supports organizations such as Goodwill Industries International, which has been providing employment and job training services since 1902.

In October 2017, Goodwill Industries received a $4.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor. Over a period of three years, the department will administer funds to five community-based Goodwill organizations, in Austin, Texas; Detroit, Michigan; Louisville, Kentucky; Indianapolis, Indiana; and Little Rock, Arkansas, for the purpose of improving employment options for adults who are reentering society following incarceration.

Together, these community organizations have committed over $1.6 million worth of resources to provide training and education to 575 adults. These resources include assessment costs, staff time, and business development services and represent 36 percent of the total grant.

In addition, the Department of Labor granted over $1 million to Goodwill organizations in Greenville, South Carolina, and Atlanta, Georgia, as part of its Reentry Project. This grant program supports the improvement of research-based services that help participants in communities with high crime and poverty rates to find better employment opportunities.


Goodwill Wins Award for Its Executive Development Program



A former assistant professor of urology at Tufts University and Medical Center, Dr. Erol Onel now serves as vice president of Heron Therapeutics, Inc., in La Jolla, California. In addition to his work, Dr. Erol Onel supports a number of charities and other organizations that make a positive impact in communities, including Goodwill Industries.

Last August, Goodwill Industries announced that it has been selected as one of the 2017 recipients of the prestigious Power of A Silver Award, which is given by the American Society of Association Executives to organizations that have demonstrated superior contributions to society. Goodwill was specifically recognized for its Executive Development Program (EDP), which helps train individuals in the skills they need to succeed as Goodwill CEOs in their particular territories.

In his comments, the president of Goodwill Industries International Jim Gibbons said the EDP program is one of the organization’s most important initiatives because it trains leaders who work directly with community individuals in need. He then recognized the program’s participants for their work in helping the organization receive the award.

Goodwill’s History of Community-Building Work


Erol Onel, MD, has built up a distinguished career in the fields of urology, andrology, reproductive health, and pharmaceutical clinical development. Currently a vice president of Heron Therapeutics, Inc., Dr. Erol Onel is also devoted to philanthropy, making regular contributions to humanitarian organizations such as Goodwill Industries International, Inc.

Goodwill manages storefronts and donation centers familiar in most larger communities across the United States. The group translates supporters’ donations into helping individuals, families, and communities to improve their circumstances. It provided job skills training, career support, and other assistance to more than 300,000 people in one recent year alone.

But far fewer people today know Goodwill’s history.

At the turn of the 20th century, Dr. Edgar Helms set out to assist individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds and people with disabilities to fulfill their potential as skilled employees and providers for their families. The Methodist minister and social reformer worked in Boston’s South End. He decided that the best way to help the people of the neighborhood to help themselves was to offer them a means of working with dignity.

So, in 1902, he founded Goodwill, through which people from disadvantaged backgrounds repaired donated clothing, then sold it at prices affordable to others of limited means. While today’s Goodwill employees no longer repair the used items they sell, the basic model of offering both employment and a means of obtaining necessities for only a nominal charge remains, with everyone involved benefiting from the transaction.

Goodwill Makes Donations Door to Door Possible through Give Back Box

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Erol Onel is the vice president for Heron Therapeutics. In his free time, Erol Onel donates to Goodwill.

Goodwill was founded in 1902, initially started in Boston by a minister who collected household items and clothing from wealthy neighborhoods for the benefit of those less fortunate. Today Goodwill offers store locations across the United States and Canada. It also provides assistance to those looking for work or trying to obtain an education.

In November of 2016, Goodwill announced that it was partnering with various retail outlets with the installation of the Give Back Box. Individuals who shopped on Cyber Monday would unpack their new items upon receipt. They would then print off a free label and package up the older items they no longer needed. USPS provided pickup service, allowing these older items to be given to Goodwill locations. Not only were individuals given a chance to buy items at a price they could afford, but over 190,000 items were kept from landfills through the Give Back Box.