Academy Sports + Outdoors' corporate headquarters in Katy, TX, has become a command center for police, army, and medical crews in town to support the hurricane Harvey rescue effort. President and CEO J.K. Symancyk opened his doors to these first responders and says it's something small that the first responders appreciate the most.
"Probably the thing that was most valued by all of these folks was the ability to come in and take a hot shower" in the company gym, says Symancyk, speaking to CNBC Make It. "We had teams of folks who were doing laundry around the clock to keep towels clean."
When Harvey barreled down on Houston, leaving historic flooding in its wake, Texas law enforcement and first responder teams reached out to the outdoor equipment retailer seeking boats to help rescue trapped residents. The business has donated hundreds.
It became clear after having conversations with local law enforcement, that they needed a place to work too, so Symancyk offered his corporate headquarters.
Since Monday night, various police departments, EMS crews, the fire department, the DEA, the army and now FEMA workers have all used the Academy Sports + Outdoors offices to sleep, shower, eat, refuel, and as a home base from which they coordinate their efforts. The work space was undamaged from the hurricane.