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Small company, big heart

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By Erik Furlan

Since Hartman Executive Advisors’ beginning in 2004, volunteerism and community involvement have been integral to the company culture, and that starts with the founders.

“We’ve worked hard to build a company that is really an extension of Marie [Hartman] and I, a company that reflects our values,” said co-founder Dave Hartman. “Service and philanthropy [are] core to who we are.”

HEA provides strategic IT leadership to those small and mid-sized businesses that don’t need or can’t afford the services of a full-time chief information officer. Hartman helps those businesses align technology with increased revenue, innovation, efficiency, customer service and risk mitigation. 

One of the company’s guiding principles is to be a giver, not a taker. In just the past year and a half, Hartman Executive Advisors has done quite a bit of giving. Some of the organizations HEA has been involved with include: the Maryland Food Bank, Habitat for Humanity of the Chesapeake, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s ‘Light the Night’ Walk, Toys for Tots, the Salvation Army and the United Way's 'Project Homeless Connect.'

“We’ve always been a big supporter of Toys for Tots, starting years ago when I was in the military,” Hartman said. “When we started the company, it was a natural extension to continue to be involved.”

One particular year, Harman recalled, the holiday party guests brought so many unwrapped toys for the charity that the Marine who came to pick them up in a minivan had to call in a much larger vehicle. “It was a good feeling for a new small company like ours,” Hartman said.

HEA participates in several services days a year, and its founders pride themselves on having the largest group of volunteers, even when much larger businesses participate alongside them.  

“It’s not just about you, but everyone feeling the need to serve,” Hartman said. “We don’t make anyone do it and yet we have 50 people there doing the toy distribution. That was a great feeling.”

This past fall, Hartman Executive Advisors volunteered for Project Homeless Connect, organized by the United Way of Central Maryland. Team Hartman spent the day helping families and individuals get access to much-needed services like medical exams, screening, legal advice, identification, haircuts and more. Hartman also made a financial contribution on behalf of their clients to the United Way of Central Maryland.

“To be able to extend beyond ourselves to families, our children—you start realizing it has this multiplicative impact, beyond just what you’re doing,” Hartman said.

Giving back and good work being at the core of Hartman Executive Advisors, the company received an Honorable Mention at the 2016 Business Philanthropy Awards, a joint effort between the Maryland Chamber of Commerce and the Baltimore Business Journal to recognize Maryland businesses that have demonstrated a commitment to improving the quality of life for residents of the state through their philanthropic efforts.

“The nice thing about this award … it recognizes for us that this is a team effort,” Hartman said. “It’s not just what we do, Marie and I. You don’t develop a philanthropic philosophy or a service culture with one person. It’s really a reflection of the entire team.”