The tsunami's legacy now includes a good idea. A consortium of 160 leading U.S. corporations announced it is teaming up with the Red Cross, CARE and other relief organizations to provide help when disaster strikes again. The Business Roundtable--with 10 million skilled workers and $4 trillion in annual revenue--is starting with a small working group of IBM, Citigroup, FedEx, Pfizer and others to create a database of corporations ready to provide people and know-how. Since the tsunami, says Red Cross chief executive Marsha Evans, hundreds of companies have been in touch. "The worst thing for me is when a CEO calls to help and we don't have an immediate need. We don't want that offer to disappear." Roundtable chairman Hank McKinnell admits a tsunami is easier to address than something like AIDS or Darfur: corporations "don't have a clear road map" for more "amorphous" problems.
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