Santa Cruz Good Times

Thursday
Sep 18th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Plantronics Hits the Big 5-0

news_Plantronics1Tech giant honors past, looks forward to future
When we recount the milestones in our county’s history, one event in particular truly stands out. It was July 21, 1969 and Neil Armstrong’s famous words, “That’s one small step for man; one giant leap for mankind,” were transmitted from the moon—via a Pacific Plantronics SPENCOM headset.

Today, the largest private employer in Santa Cruz County is celebrating its 50th anniversary—a half century of communication innovation, beginning with headsets and expanding into Bluetooth. Since taking several trips to the moon, Plantronics products have become internationally recognized—they were named the official headset of the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, and they continue to lead the pack in mobile communication technology.

To show Plantronics’ appreciation of Santa Cruz for its decades of loyalty and support, the company hosted an anniversary event on May 26.

“The company has historically been involved with the community, so the event was us saying thank you,” says Russ Castronovo, director of global communications for Plantronics. “The company is extraordinarily excited about what’s to come.”

Mayor Ryan Coonerty, State Sen. Joe Simitian, and representatives from Second Harvest Food Bank and Ecology Action were among those in attendance, who demonstrated their appreciation for the company’s contributions to Santa Cruz.

According to Castronovo, many Plantronics employees volunteer at Second Harvest Food Bank, and were instrumental in donating 350,000 pounds of food to the nonprofit this year. The Plantronics team also lent its expertise to designing the Food Bank’s warehouse distribution center.

“The values of the area are reflected in the company,” says Castronovo. “This is a company that’s in tune with the community—it’s about being conscious of what’s around us.”

That ideology is reflected in the water-resistant plants outside the company’s facilities, their use of natural light within buildings, and the recent decision to move forward with a solar panel installation initiative. On May 25, the second phase of Plantronics’ solar panel installation was completed, putting the company one step closer to having 80 percent of their energy offset by solar power.

Aside from being an environmentally responsible company, Castronovo says Plantronics is currently focused on developing streamlined Bluetooth systems that cater to the modern day office worker.

“We’re all about getting unified communication to the mobile professional,” says Castronovo. “They don’t want to use three headsets—now they can use Skype one moment, or a Cisco system, or an IBM system, and their headset will work with all of them.”

On May 18—the actual date of Plantronics’ anniversary—the company launched several new products for enterprise users in an office environment, in addition to hosting a presentation before financial analysts about growth opportunity.

But the most exciting moment of all, says Castronovo, was the opportunity to participate in the time-honored tradition of ringing the closing bell at the New York Stock Exchange.

“While every day there is a different company that gets to [ring the bell],” says Castronovo, “it was particularly meaningful to us, in that it was an opportunity to showcase the future and opportunity of the company.”  Learn more about Plantronics at plantronics.com.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Catwalk on the Wild Side

Meet the artists and designers behind this year’s edition of FashionART, SantaCruz’s most outrageous fashion show

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Feeding Frenzy

Culinary journey ‘The Trip to Italy’ isn’t the foodie film you’d expect 

 

Watch List

From Google to the government to data brokers, why your privacy is now a thing of the past
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Sweet Treats

Local cannabis bakers win award for cookies

 

What fashion trends do you want to see, or not see?

Santa Cruz  |  High School Guidance Counselor

 

Best of Santa Cruz County

The 2013 Santa Cruz County Readers' Poll and Critics’ Picks It’s our biggest issue of the year, and in it, your votes—more than 6,500 of them—determined the winners of The Best of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll. New to the long list of local restaurants, shops and other notables that captured your interest: Best Beer Selection, Best Locally Owned Business, Best Customer Service and Best Marijuana Dispensary. In the meantime, many readers were ever so chatty online about potential new categories. Some of the suggestions that stood out: Best Teen Program and Best Web Design/Designer. But what about: Dog Park, Church, Hotel, Local Farm, Therapist (I second that!) or Sports Bar—not to be confused with Bra. Our favorite suggestion: Best Act of Kindness—one reader noted Café Gratitude and the free meals it offered to the Santa Cruz Police Department in the aftermath of recent crimes. Perhaps some of these can be woven into next year’s ballot, so stay tuned. In the meantime, enjoy the following pages and take note of our Critics’ Picks, too, beginning on page 91. A big thanks for voting—and for reading—and an even bigger congratulations to all of the winners. Enjoy.  -Greg Archer, EditorBest of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll INDEX

 

Santa Clara Wine Trail

My memories of growing up in England include my mother pouring port after Sunday dinner—and sometimes a glass of sherry before dinner. My family didn’t drink much wine back then, but we certainly made up for it with the port and sherry.