Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption Releases 2020 Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces List

Posted on October 21, 2020

Annual survey of employers reveals increased investment in adoption benefits

Columbus, Ohio — The Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption released its 14th annual Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces list recognizing organizations with the most robust adoption benefit programs. The Foundation partnered with RTI International, an independent, nonprofit research institute, to survey employers across the United States and score participants based on three criteria: financial reimbursement, paid leave and — new in 2020 — the percentage of employees eligible for those benefits. 

More than 25 years ago, Dave Thomas, founder of Wendy’s® and the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, led an initiative advocating for better adoption benefits in the workplace. The Foundation has carried that legacy forward through its signature Adoption-Friendly Workplace program and 100 Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces list.

The 2020 list includes a diverse group of organizations representing 23 industries. On average, employers that completed the survey offer $10,158 in financial reimbursement, which is up 8.5% from 2019. The average amount of paid leave was 7.7 weeks, up 4% from last year.

“Congratulations to all the organizations on this year’s list, and thank you for your commitment to supporting employees who grow their families through adoption,” said Rita Soronen, President & CEO of the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. “You are making a difference in the lives of thousands of waiting children who need the stability and support of a permanent family now, more than ever.”

NVIDIA is atop the 100 Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces list for the third year in a row. The Santa Clara, CA-based artificial intelligence company offers all full- and part-time employees unlimited financial aid to cover the cost of an adoption. NVIDIA also provides up to 20 weeks of paid parental leave to women and men welcoming an adopted child into their home.

“‘One team’ is a core value at NVIDIA, and this deep, shared sense of collaboration includes supporting employees’ families, knowing that they are created in different ways,” said Shelly Cerio, Senior Vice President of Human Resources at NVIDIA. “NVIDIA is committed to removing any barriers that employees might face in building their families, particularly for those wanting to adopt and improve lives for others. It’s a true honor to be recognized by the Foundation for the third year in a row.”

The Foundation also ranks employers by size, industry, best paid leave, foster care benefits and impact. The impact list recognizes organizations who employ more than 1,000 people and that provide the largest overall financial benefits for adoption to the largest number of employees.

The Wendy’s Company has been designated with Forever Family emeritus status after holding the top spot on the 100 Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces list for many years.

“Wendy’s founder, Dave Thomas, was adopted and knew that the support of a loving family could help children reach their full potential. At Wendy’s, we believe that offering adoption benefits to our employees is simply the right thing to do,” said Todd Penegor, President & CEO of The Wendy’s Company and member of the Foundation’s board of trustees. “We’re excited to celebrate NVIDIA atop the list once again along with so many companies who have recognized the importance of adoption benefits for their employees.”

View the complete 2020 Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces list and other adoption resources for employers at davethomasfoundation.org/AFW.

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About the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption
The Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption is a national nonprofit public charity dedicated exclusively to finding permanent homes for the more than 150,000 children waiting to be adopted in North America’s foster care systems. Created by Wendy’s® founder Dave Thomas, who was adopted, the Foundation implements evidence-based, results-driven national service programs, foster care adoption awareness campaigns and innovative grantmaking. Learn more at davethomasfoundation.org.


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