Priscilla Huynh

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Honoree: Priscilla Huynh

Honored by: UnitedHealthcare

Cause Area: Healthcare

There is nothing too complicated about Priscilla Huynh’s approach when it comes to her volunteer work around Orange County. Over the past seven years, she has built an outstanding record of service to others based on three simple traits: enthusiasm, leadership and family. Huynh, a pharmacy manager for UnitedHealthcare, has been steadfastly enthusiastic about signing up for volunteer programs through her work, including fundraiser running events for cancer and clothing drives for youth shelter programs. Much of her volunteer service has centered on providing valuable support ── such as farming, collecting crops and delivering groceries ── for the Second Harvest Food Bank in Irvine. And each of these opportunities to give something back to the community has energized her and transformed her into a natural leader when it comes to persuading others to volunteer. Priscilla’s quiet but insistent leadership style in regards to recruiting has resulted in more than 50 people joining with her on Second Harvest and other activities. Her recruits are not only teams of UnitedHealthcare co-workers, but various friends and family members. But if she can’t convince them to actually take time and get out to a volunteer venue, then she does the next best resourceful thing: she convinces them to make a monetary donation instead. “I’m pretty passionate for all causes, whether it’s medical diseases or children’s issues,” Priscilla says about her generous volunteer spirit. “Growing up, my mom always instituted this kind of upbringing that we need to help out. We need to help others. I’m a pharmacist and I think that we’re pretty fortunate in the profession. I think we have a lot of opportunities to give back.” She has realized that if she is the one organizing or producing a volunteer activity, then she has credibility, not to mention the right kind of personality, to leverage others into participating. It is easier, she believes, to sell people on the idea of helping her out because that makes the volunteer work more real, more personal. She has used announcements, emails and good old sweet talking to sell potential volunteers on the idea of coming out to help and making a difference in the community. At UnitedHealthcare, some of Priscilla’s co-workers in the department where she used to work lament that they don’t seem to volunteer as much because she isn’t around as much to inspire them. “Priscilla is really making a difference when it comes to volunteer service,” says Alex Uhm, chief operating officer for UnitedHealthcare of California, and 2015 co-chair of the organization’s California Social Responsibility Committee. “She has been an outstanding recruiter and she has made a very personal and admirable commitment to helping others.” In whatever occasion she finds herself talking about the value of volunteering, Priscilla says she always emphasizes that it can be fun and that family members can get involved. She likes to point out that she often brings her own children to be alongside her helping out at fundraising or donation events. “You know, with two kids, I’m pretty busy myself,” Priscilla says. “I do try. I kind of lead by example. And so I will tell co-workers, ‘if you’re free this weekend or you’re free this day or that, please join us.’ It’s a way of giving back to the community and helping the less fortunate.” Altogether, it’s clear that Priscilla has proven her value when it comes to giving back. She is deeply respected for the way she helps and leads others. She is living UnitedHealth Group’s mission of helping people live healthier lives. Her spirit of volunteerism is greatly admired.

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