His calling: A career in caring
Most kids don’t grow up thinking they want to work in Corporate Social Responsibility. And neither did Adeeb. The child of Pakistani immigrants, he helped his family run their motel in Wyoming. “Work was my father’s life.” Back then, Adeeb wanted to be a sports writer, and he was well on his way. As a student at USC, he covered Reggie Bush and Pete Carroll in their back-to-back undefeated seasons. A number of his articles even got picked up by the Associated Press.
“Writing about sports was fun, but there was no deeper meaning,” Adeeb said. So he radically changed gears. After graduation, he took up grant writing for the Red Cross, moved on to the United Way, earned his MBA and found his true path, which has led him to TIAA.
“The private sector offers the greatest potential to create opportunities to make a difference for those who are less fortunate,” he says. In his current role, Adeeb has established and enhanced TIAA’s impact in Denver, San Francisco, Chicago and other western communities.
It starts with a spark
“So many of us want to make an impact, but it’s hard to know where or how,” he says. TIAA employees have helped the Denver Urban Garden build eight permanent green spaces, including some at schools. They have transformed a parking lot at St. John’s Cathedral into a vegetable garden, which provides fresh food to families in need. These programs align with TIAA’s Corporate Social Responsibility focus on hunger, education and the environment.
Much like his father, Adeeb’s “work” is his life. He serves on a number of nonprofit boards and committees. “I’m just serving my community through different lenses.”
He’s run a transportation program that provided 20,000+ rides annually for the elderly, ill and disabled. He also launched Save a Life Denver, placing 1,500 defibrillators at popular community spots. He’s run the Power Lunch program, which connects professionals to local schools to help improve reading proficiency. Adeeb’s reading buddy, third-grader Oliver, is now reading at grade level!
You could say that making a difference is the Khan family’s “business.” Adeeb’s wife is a social worker at a preschool where she assists refugees from Syria and Libya. Although the two Khan children are quite young, they’re already learning about giving back.