AKRON, Ohio, July 12, 2011 -- David Plate, CEO of the Northern Ohio Red Cross Blood Services, recently presented Chief Health Officer Brent Pawlecki and The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company with the 2010 Top Corporate Blood Donor Award.

“From the beginning, Goodyear has been a part of what makes us exist,” Plate said. “It is remarkable to find a single sponsor that in 59 years has touched over 500,000 lives. I’m not aware of any other enterprise that has done this before.”

Since 1952, Goodyear has collected a total of 182,663 pints of blood. Goodyear’s donations have helped save the lives of 547, 989 patients in 57 local hospitals across 19 counties.

In 2010 alone, Goodyear collected 1,367 pints of blood that provided 4,000 life-saving transfusable products to thousands of patients in local hospitals.

“I’m extremely honored to work with a company that has the support of its employees who help people they don’t even know in a time of unexpected, incredible need,” Pawlecki said.

Goodyear’s Akron headquarters welcomes the Red Cross Bloodmobile every other month where associates look forward to donating blood to save lives throughout northern Ohio.

In addition to the blood drives, Goodyear has donated $2.7 million to the Red Cross to use toward various initiatives, including the American Red Cross Aquatics Program. Beyond the established water safety training sites, the local Red Cross is partnering with YMCA sites to implement additional water safety programs and classes in Summit and Portage Counties to teach swimming techniques and provide lifeguard training to children and adults.

Toby Weber, CEO of American Red Cross of Summit and Portage Counties, awarded Faith Stewart, Goodyear’s director of community affairs, a plaque to recognize the company’s ongoing collaboration with the American Red Cross in support of water safety.

“The Learn to Swim water safety program is a strong fit with Goodyear's charitable focus on safety,” Stewart said. “We are fortunate to have a relationship with the local Red Cross organization that gives us this opportunity to help provide tools for being safe around water and also provides training for future employment.”

Goodyear is one of the world’s largest tire companies.  It employs approximately 72,000 people and manufactures its products in 54 facilities in 22 countries around the world.