Oakland, CA October 26, 2018 – AB&I Foundry, an Oakland-based company that manufactures cast iron pipe and fittings for the plumbing industry, spearheaded a massive neighborhood community clean up in East Oakland on Thursday, October 18 and Saturday, October 20.
AB&I has been in Oakland since 1906 and has seen the city grow and change. With that change has come enormous blight with illegal dumping on neighborhood streets. The company teamed up with local leaders, organizations and residents to tackle this huge problem and addressed hotspots within the boundaries of 73rd Street/Hawley and San Leandro Street to 85th Ave and International Boulevard, as well as G Street between 85th and 92nd Ave. The team of 250 volunteers filled more than 800 bags with debris between Thursday and Saturday including more than 40 mattresses and an array of tires from the streets.
“This event was more successful than we envisioned. It’s impressive that AB&I along with a passionate group of concerned citizens, inspirational Oakland leaders, and dedicated community organizations, all came together with the common goal of improving our neighborhood. I am so proud to have been part of this community partnership,” said Michael Lowe, General Manager of AB&I Foundry. “We’ve been part of the fabric of this community for more than 110 years. We saw what was happening with illegal dumping and the blight and decided to take on the challenge. AB&I has a long history of community involvement from supporting charitable causes, the city’s Adopt a Spot, to providing turkey meals during the holidays to people of the community.”
During the clean-up many residents came out to thank the volunteers who were cleaning up their neighborhood. Also, cars going by were honking and giving a thumbs-up to the volunteers in appreciation for their efforts. The group of volunteers included team members from AB&I, neighbors in the community and other organizations who all wanted to make a difference. The Men of Valor from Acts Full Gospel Church sent 33 volunteers who were instrumental in cleaning up along Hegenberger Road, one of the worst dumping sites in the city.
“When we began planning this event, we reached out to Mayor Libby Schaff and Assembly Member Rob Bonta who were very supportive of our ambitious goals,” said Zeydi Gutierrez, Public Affairs Strategic Director at AB&I Foundry. Gutierrez led the planning team that included Pat Mossburg from Councilman Larry Reid’s office, Kamika Dunlap from Supervisor Nate Miley’s office, Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan, Julia Lang from Downtown Streets Team, Rodney Clara from Mattress Recycling Council, Peter Dunlap from Oakland Public Works, Jennifer Stern from Oakland Public Works, Bishop Bob Jackson from Acts Full Gospel Church of Oakland and also an AB&I Community Advisory Panel, Gloria Crowell from Allen-Temple Church of Oakland, Rosa Ibarra, Oakland resident and member of the AB&I Community Advisory Panel, Civicorps, Alameda County Community Foodbank, and Waste Management of Alameda County. “I was so impressed with the commitment and enthusiasm of everyone on the planning committee and the volunteers. It was obvious on the day of the clean-up how important this event was to everyone and how proud they were to play a part in making Oakland the best it can be,” said Gutierrez. “Special thanks to Mary Forte with Block by Block Organizing Network and the Men of Valor without whom none of this would have been possible.”
Mary Forte from Block by Block Organizing Network (District 7) said, “I was born and raised in Oakland. This is home and I love to clean. This is my castle and I want it clean. That’s why I do what I do.”
Contact: Francesca Dunbar
Director of Group Marketing
About AB&I Foundry
AB&I Foundry, based in Oakland, CA, is a division of McWane, Inc. Born in the shadows of the Great San Francisco Earthquake of 1906, AB&I Foundry has been producing quality cast iron products for over a hundred years. Acquired by McWane in 2006, AB&I manufactures a full-line of cast iron soil pipe and fittings for DWV systems. In addition, AB&I has become a modern, highly-technological full- service provider of custom OEM gray iron castings for companies nationwide. Through a comprehensive program of water treatment, air pollution reduction, recycling, and solid-waste management, AB&I has set the standard for responsible foundry practices and policies.
About McWane Inc.
McWane, Inc. is a family-owned business based in Birmingham, Alabama, with companies across the United States and the world. At the McWane Family of Companies, we cast ductile iron products--including pipe, valves, hydrants, fittings, and plumbing products--manufacture fire extinguishers, fire suppression systems, steel pressure vessels, and build network switches and monitoring equipment. We are the leader in delivering clean, safe drinking water around the world while focusing on the safe, environmentally-friendly manufacturing of our products. With more than 6,000 team members McWane has a longstanding commitment of support to the communities where we live and work.