Guardian Life Insurance Celebrates New Lehigh Valley Office Complex
By Colin McEvoy on July 18, 2016
Guardian Life Insurance, one of the nation’s largest mutual life insurers, celebrated the opening of its new office complex in the Lehigh Valley last week, further bolstering its already strong presence in the region.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held at the three-story, 281,680-square-foot facility at 6255 Sterners Way in Hanover Township, Northampton County, consolidating Guardian’s previous regional headquarters that was spread across three buildings in Bethlehem and one in Allentown.
“This building is both a testament to the future growth of our business and our commitment to the Lehigh Valley,” said Deanna M. Mulligan, President and CEO of the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America.
“As one of the largest employers in the area, it is our hope this new office complex will help to continue to attract talent from our local community by raising the bar on what employees should expect from their workplace,” Mulligan said.
Employees began moving into the new office complex last month, and will continue to do so throughout the year. About 1,400 have moved in so far, according to Lehigh Valley Business, and the building can accommodate more than 1,800 employees in total.
The Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation (LVEDC) had been working with Guardian since early 2014 on the site search and to help facilitate the project. Don Cunningham, LVEDC President and CEO, said this collaboration reflects the organization’s mission to serve as a shared services and resource center to help businesses to come, grow, and start here.
“Although new businesses moving into the region tend to draw the bigger headlines, the behind-the-scenes work done to help retain and expand the region’s important existing companies like Guardian is just as important,” Cunningham said. “It’s a very important part of what we do every day here at LVEDC.”
LVEDC helped Guardian’s real estate advisers to identify site opportunities for the project. In conjunction with the Lehigh Valley Workforce Development Board and the Governor’s Action Team, LVEDC also provided the company access to information on the regional economy and leveraged relationships with municipal officials and utility providers to help facilitate the process.
Guardian Life Insurance is one of 15 companies in the Lehigh Valley with 1,000 or more employees.
Among those attending the July 14 ribbon-cutting were Pennsylvania Lieutenant Governor Mike Stack, who particularly praised the project for its use natural lighting and adherence to various environmental certifications and the latest standards for energy efficiency.
“As a servant of this commonwealth, I am so proud to see construction of this building here; It stands as a testament to the future,” Stack said. “… It was designed with an eye on tomorrow, and that is a commendable commitment. It also creates jobs here, and for that, Pennsylvania is grateful.”
The H-shaped office complex was built to be LEED-certified, with all offices located in the center of the building to maximize natural daylight and external views. Its innovative design enhances work/life integration for employees, increases the ability to work collaboratively for the customers’ benefit, and promotes a flexible work environment, according to the company.
By bringing all its regional employees under one roof, the building will allow for a more collaborative work environment that will better coordinate and enhance client interaction and support, according to the company. The complex includes features like a town hall space, walk-up technology support center, walking trail, fitness center, and pantries on every floor.
Guardian Life Insurance has about 5,000 employees in the United States and a network of more than 3,200 financial representatives nationwide. Headquartered in New York City, the company has regional offices in Appleton, Wis.; Pittsfield, Mass.; and Spokane, Wash., as well as the Lehigh Valley.
Other attendees at the ribbon-cutting included State Sen. Mario Scavello, State Rep. Marcia Hahn, Hanover Township Board of Supervisors Chairman John N. Diacogiannis, and Township Manager John J. Finnigan, Jr.
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This column, written by LVEDC President and CEO Don Cunningham, originally appeared in Lehigh Valley Business on July 18, 2016. (Click here to read Cunningham’s previous colum[...]Continue to Next Page