Internationally recognized outdoor retailer L.L.Bean, known for its legendary customer service and high-quality gear and apparel that further people’s enjoyment of the outdoors, announced year-end approval of its charitable program, contributing $4 million in grants, products and sponsorships in 2018 through its newly named L.L.Bean Outdoor Access Fund and L.L.Bean Community Fund.
For decades, L.L.Bean has supported community and environmental organizations through its charitable funding programs. In just the past ten years, the company has provided over $30 million to nonprofit organizations.
“At L.L.Bean, we have a strong legacy of promoting outdoor recreation and environmental stewardship, a legacy that began with my great-grandfather, Leon Leonwood Bean, over a hundred years ago.” said Shawn Gorman, L.L.Bean’s Executive Chairman of the Board. “We are proud that this commitment continues to this day.”
The L.L.Bean Outdoor Access Fund seeks to empower people to experience the shared joy of the outdoors by funding organizations that increase public access to nature and recreational opportunities, while also promoting environmental stewardship. Of the $2.8 million allocated for this fund in 2018, notable grant recipients include the National Park Foundation, which L.L.Bean pledged $3 million to over the next three years. In 2018, the National Park Foundation received over half a million dollars of the $3 million grant, with the rest to be allocated over the next few years. And $1 million was pledged to The Trust for Public Land, with $500,000 being dispersed in 2018 and the remaining to be fulfilled during the next two years.
“L.L.Bean is committed to supporting public access to the outdoors, not just because that is our business, but because that is who we are,” said Stephen Smith, President and CEO. “Enjoyment of the natural world is our core value.”
The L.L.Bean Community Fund continues the support the company has provided over the years for a wide variety of community-based organizations, pledging more than $1.2 million in health, human services, and educational and arts organizations in Maine this year.
“As a values-based, family-owned company, we’re proud that contributions through our Outdoor Access Fund and Community Fund help provide places for our customers, our employees, our friends and our neighbors to enjoy the outdoors, and in the process instilling a love for the environment, especially among family outdoor enthusiasts. We are grateful that the continued success of our company puts us in a position to continue to contribute to the health of our community and to the environment, as we have for decades,” continued Gorman.