Hagaman, who is also an executive committee member of the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, received the award in recognition of his support for the JAG program, which helps young adults, many of them low-income, succeed in high school and prepare for a career, military service or post-secondary education.
JAG’s New Jersey chapter is managed by the N.J. Chamber Foundation. According to a statement by Chamber CEO Tom Bracken, when COVID-19 shut down the state and funding was diverted away from the N.J. Chamber Foundation, Hagaman inspired fellow N.J. Chamber of Commerce board members to make contributions to JAG-NJ.
This resulted in more than $100,000 in new contributions.
“Because of this, the N.J. Chamber Foundation was not forced to cut JAG New Jersey programs for the 2020-21 academic year,” Bracken said. “Congratulations to Bill and thank you to all of our board members who stepped up to answer Bill’s call for support.
“In many ways, this award reflects the spirit of the entire N.J. Chamber Board of Directors,” he said. “The Board’s commitment and support is what allows the N.J. Chamber of Commerce and the N.J. Chamber of Commerce Foundation to do the work we do.”
Hagaman said he was both honored and humbled to receive the award.
“The pandemic created a challenging environment for not-for-profits and their fundraising efforts, and that certainly included Jobs for America’s Graduates,” he said.
After challenging his fellow board members to contribute to JAG-NJ, he called surpassing the $100,000 milestone “everyone’s pleasant surprise” and “something special.”
“This award is a reflection of that collective effort, for sure,” Hagaman said.