Celebrating 175 Years Through Service

by Natalie Jones

This year, Unum Group celebrated its 175th anniversary. While we have evolved with the world around us, we have also maintained our steadfast commitment to serving the needs of others. Today, we empower more than 45 million customers, 181,000 businesses, and 11,000 employees to navigate life's most challenging moments. From our humble beginnings with a $5,000 life insurance policy, we have become a financial protection benefits leader and advocate for protecting the futures of businesses and individuals.

Our success comes not only from serving others but from the support of the communities around us. That’s why we celebrated our milestone year by giving back. 


Commemorative Grants

We awarded several commemorative grants to community organizations that profoundly impact the health and well-being of those around us, including three $175,000 gifts.

In Chattanooga, Tenn., the Austin Hatcher Foundation for Pediatric Cancer received a grant to support patients and their families as they navigate cancer-related challenges. Childhood cancer patients face an increased risk of late-effect neurocognitive deficits due to treatments such as chemo and radiation. These deficits can include declines in IQ, academic skills, and career attainment later in life.


“The diagnosis of cancer and its long-lasting impacts are extremely stressful and traumatizing for patients and families. We are thrilled that Unum's grant will allow us to continue to provide children and families with psychosocial care at no cost, helping to address these impacts and foster their future well-being.”

- Amy Jo Osborn, President & CEO of The Austin Hatcher Foundation



Austin Hatcher Foundation check presentation
Check presentation for the Austin Hatcher Foundation



In Portland, Maine, the Boys and Girls Club of Southern Maine (BGCSM) received a grant for their transformative work supporting older teens transitioning from high school to the next stage of their lives. This work is a critical part of their mission to provide stable, inclusive spaces for children and teens that lead to better outcomes.


“This gift will help accelerate our Bridge to Success program, where teens and young adults explore trade career opportunities, prepare for college, and build skills with caring mentors. This support will empower them to graduate high school on time and be well-prepared for their futures.”

- Brian Elowe, CEO of BGCSM



Mike Simonds speaking with members of the Boys and Girls Club of Southern Maine
Mike Simonds at the Boys & Girls Club of Southern Maine


In Columbia, S.C., the Big Red Barn Retreat is dedicated to providing veterans, active-duty service members, and first responders a place to gather, connect, and rediscover their sense of purpose. Those served by the organization also receive access to mental health resources at no charge, an important step in addressing today’s mental health crisis.



“We recognize the vital roles that veterans, those who actively serve, and first responders play in our communities. This contribution reflects our gratitude and commitment to supporting those dedicated to protecting our safety and well-being.”

- Tim Arnold, Colonial Life President and CEO



Tim Arnold speaking at the Big Red Barn Retreat
Tim Arnold speaking at the Big Red Barn Retreat
Horses at the Big Red Barn Retreat
Horses at the Big Red Barn Retreat




175 Acts of Caring Spirit 


Through our 175 Caring Spirit Moments initiative, we embarked on a year-long journey to complete at least 175 volunteer and giving activities across our organization. This initiative builds on our long-standing tradition of philanthropy and our commitment to strengthening the communities where we live and work. 

We touched countless lives throughout the year during activities big and small, including helping address food insecurity for many of our neighbors, assisting refugees relocating to Poland from Ukraine, supporting communities in Maine after a mass shooting and enriching the lives of those with disabilities in the U.K. 


“To mark our anniversary, we celebrated the outstanding work of nonprofit organizations in our communities that share our commitment to long-term initiatives that improve people's health and security. We are grateful to everyone who has helped Unum achieve this milestone, and we are proud to have awarded special commemorative grants to these and other deserving organizations.”

- Rick McKenney, Unum Group President and CEO


We’re proud to be on track to finish the year by completing more than 415  activities, a testament to the caring spirit of our employees.


Unum Group Employees Volunteering at VIPS in Baton Rouge
Unum Group employees volunteering at VIPS in Baton Rouge
Unum Group Employees volunteering at the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank
Volunteering event at the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank
Unum Group Employees volunteering
Unum Group volunteering at Caring for Friends in Philadelphia


As we embark on the next chapter of our journey, we remain committed to helping those around us – our customers, employees and communities. We will continue to focus on how we can better serve others and contribute positively to society and help those around us achieve their full potential.


Cheers to 175 years of helping the working world thrive! 

We commemorated this milestone throughout the year by giving a platform to the voices of those who, through their actions and dedication, laid the foundation for our success.

Read More: 175 Years: Appreciating our purpose



Photo Gallery


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Union Mutual building in 1886
Union Mutual building 1886
Unum Building circa 1980s
Unum building circa 1980s
Unum Życie TUiR S.A. top sales agents in Chattanooga
Unum Życie TUiR S.A. top sales agents in Chattanooga
Unum Group employees gather for 175th celebration in Chattanooga
Unum Group employees gather for 175th celebration in Chattanooga
Unum Group senior leaders ringing the bell at the NYSE
Unum Group senior leaders ringing the bell at the NYSE
Rick McKenney throwing out the first pitch at the Lookouts Unum Night
Unum Group CEO Rick McKenney throwing out the first pitch at the Lookouts Unum Night



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About Unum Group

Unum Group (NYSE: UNM), an international provider of workplace benefits and services, has been helping workers and their families for 175 years. Through its Unum and Colonial Life brands, the company offers disability, life, accident, critical illness, dental, vision and stop-loss insurance; leave and absence management support and behavioral health services. In 2022, Unum reported revenues of about $12 billion and paid $8 billion in benefits. The Fortune 500 company is one of the 2023 World’s Most Ethical Companies, recognized by Ethisphere®. 

Visit the Unum Group newsroom for more information, and connect with us on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram.