They lined up to collect badges and hats – orange, black, red, beige or yellow, according to designated teams. Volunteers served eggs, bagels and coffee. And then, in bright green T-shirts emblazoned with the slogan “We filled 15 thousand boxes,” they began folding cardboard containers and filling them with $375,000 worth of food they had donated to the Orange County Food Bank.
CEO Mohamed El-Erian, who worked the conveyor belt alongside traders and clerks, said the effort, begun by former CEO Bill Thompson, had packed 1,000 boxes five years ago, and then “in the typical Pimco way, it took off.”
Pimco, one of the largest fixed-income investment managers in the world, manages $1.97 trillion in assets. The annual event, food bank director Mark Lowry said, celebrates “the joy of generosity.” The food bank, based in Garden Grove, distributes nearly 20 million pounds of food a year, feeding 165,000 people each month at shelters, senior centers and churches. More than 300,000 people in Orange County live below the poverty line.