Three white women pose together with name tags in a hotel ballroom.

Members of Applied Development’s Team attended the Executive Alliance Women of Excellence luncheon with CEO Kimberly Citizen.

At Applied Development, our mission is about giving back. We champion the rights of people of all abilities to share their brilliance. Founders Kimberly Citizen and Biffrey Braxton want the company to design better tomorrows for clients and employees alike and created a unique corporate culture as part of that. Like our mission, our corporate culture emphasizes giving back to the community. Ahead of Thanksgiving and Giving Tuesday, two days dedicated to appreciation and giving, we wanted to highlight how Applied Development gives back to the community. 

We support the causes we believe in.

As a company, we have been lucky enough to be able to support nonprofits and causes that are important to us. Applied Development is a corporate sponsor of the Chesapeake Shakespeare Theater, based in Baltimore. Our CEO Kimberly Citizen also sits on the board. We’ve been able to support their program to bring theater and art to veterans who are experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder and the effects of re-entering civilian society.

As a veteran, Kimberly explained in a LinkedIn article why this initiative is so important. We’ve also been able to support the Wounded Warrior Project, a charity and veterans support organization dedicated to helping wounded veterans. 

This holiday season, we are also participating in Operation Help a Hero’s Operation Christmas Spirit. The non-profit’s programs support military families and units as they prepare for and endure the challenges of deployment, and their transition back to life in the U.S. Operation Christmas Spirit allows individuals, families, and companies to adopt a military family in need and make their Christmas dreams come true. 

We give back to the community by empowering people. 

Another part of our unique corporate culture is rooted in mentoring. Kimberly has written articles on LinkedIn both about why being a mentor and a mentee is important. Within our company, Kimberly and Biffrey make time every week to speak with employees to learn what’s important to them and how Applied Development can help them grow. We know that we can serve our clients better if our employees have what they need to succeed. Ultimately, this means we can serve more people with the accessibility services we offer. 

We also believe in mentoring the next generation of leaders and business owners. Through the Hire1Youth program, we’ve brought high school students to our company as paid interns.

Baltimore City youth learn what it means to work at an office and how they can succeed in business in the future. Kimberly also makes time to mentor other female founders and business owners. Through the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Business Program, she has also been able to provide mentoring and speak to other business owners about her success. 

We allow our employees time to volunteer and support the causes they care about.  

Our unique corporate culture isn’t just about listening to employees and getting to know what they need and want. At AD, we also want to create a work-life balance. This allows our employees to engage in what matters to them. For Philip Lester, this means training for the Baltimore Marathon and creating a team to raise money. Judith Davis provides pro-bono interpreting and coaching services for refugees and immigrants and cooks for the homeless and less fortunate throughout the year.

“Engaging in various causes that benefit the community… gives me a sense of gratitude and keeps me well-grounded,” she says. Even as co-founder, Biffrey Braxton finds time to volunteer for the House of Ruth, Maryland as one of the members of the Men Greater Than Violence Initiative and as a member of the Midtown Community Benefits District board. 

Giving Tuesday occurs on the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving. It provides a day for nonprofit organizations to kick-off their end-of-year giving campaigns and for companies and individuals to give back to the community. Learn more about Giving Tuesday initiatives and the organizations you can support.