January 31, 2020
United Way of Kennebec Valley raises $1.82 million--up 5 percent from last year
AUGUSTA - United Way of Kennebec Valley (UWKV) recently announced a 2019 fundraising total of $1,821,328--the most ever collected in support of its 51 partner programs. Campaign co-chair Elissa Shuman Emmons shared this news at UWKV's Campaign Celebration, which attracted more than 200 people to Central Maine Power on Thursday.
In September, Steve and Elissa challenged the community to raise $1.8 million in order to fund growing local demand related to basic needs, health care and education. Together, UWKV supporters exceeded that goal, increasing the campaign by 5 percent.
When Emmons announced the campaign total, she stressed that ownership of this success belongs to the entire community. "Together, we've been able to make all the difference to the 22,700 people who rely on United Way services each year," Emmons said. "This has been an extremely rewarding experience-one that my brother and I are extremely humbled by and grateful for."
The funds raised during the campaign will support UWKV's partner programs in 2020, as determined by an allocations committee that reviews and visits organizations before allotting funds. The allocations committee is comprised of local donors and United Way board members.
During the event, Emmons presented several awards to outstanding businesses. A creative group of staff from J.S. McCarthy Printers were honored as Employee Campaign Managers of the Year. The Small Business Partner of the Year Award was presented to A Partner in Technology for achieving 100 percent participation and provided crucial technology support during the campaign. In addition, Charlie's Family of Dealerships was named United Way's Large Business Partner of the Year for its multifaceted support that increased workplace giving, resulting in the first business ever to crest the $200,000 mark. The Chairperson's Recognition Award was presented to Team EJP for broadening campaign efforts to 27 locations across the country. Emmons presented the Public Service Partner of the Year Award to former executive director of the Augusta Food Bank, Alan Smith.
Emmons also credited incremental successes throughout the fundraising season, including new workplace campaigns, the growing involvement of partner programs in community presentations, and the 47 businesses that have increased their donations since last year. In addition, 14 businesses were acknowledged for achieving full staff participation in giving.
UWKV Executive Director Courtney Yeager presented United Way's Emerging Leaders Society with the Norm Temple Community Volunteer Award, which has been recognizing outstanding volunteerism in the Kennebec Valley area since 1994. Kristin Grant and Katelyn Pushard, the society's co-chairs, accepted the award. "Emerging Leaders Society has given us the opportunity to feel like we're giving back and making a difference in the community," Pushard said. "It's offered a great way to learn more about community needs and the programs available to meet those needs."
During the annual meeting portion of the event, Jessica Norton of Kennebec Savings Bank was elected as Board Chair and J.S. McCarthy Printers' Amy Tardiff was elected as Board Vice-Chair.
United Way also welcomed seven new board members to serve an initial three-year board term: Nathan Curtis of Gagnon Dental, Chris Voynik of Maine Farm Bureau, Jennifer Jacques of G & E Roofing, Derek Wing of Team EJP, Paula Lacasse of Augusta Fuel Company, Alissa Boynton of Maine Family Planning, and community volunteer, Nona Boyink. In addition, Central Maine Community College's Maria Hays was elected to serve a second three-year board term.
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