September 20, 2018
Area businesses rally behind United Way drive
AUGUSTA — More than 30 businesses contributed to United Way’s inaugural school supply drive at last week’s campaign kickoff, with Central Maine Power Company leading the pack in donations. CMP staff arrived with a truck full of 40 backpacks, playground balls and nine additional boxes filled with school supplies.
Doug Herling, CEO of CMP, is one of many company leaders who rallied behind this effort. “I am humbled by our employees’ generosity to our central Maine neighbors and could not be more proud to be a part of such a great organization,” he said. “Education has always been a cornerstone of our corporate contributions program, and these donations will surely help to get local young people off to a good start to the school year and put them on the road to success.”
The collection was organized by United Way’s Emerging Leaders Society and 8-year-old Gabby Russell, who is co-chairing the United Way campaign with her father Chris of G&E Roofing. Additional contributing businesses included Kennebec Savings Bank, Lajoie Brothers, Wipfli/Macpage, NRF Distributors, Hannaford and others.
“Many businesses, including CMP and its employees, really took our ‘Power the Dream’ theme and ran with it,” said Rob Gordon, executive director for United Way of Kennebec Valley. “Not only did CMP increase employee participation in giving by 82 percent, they went above and beyond in our school supply drive. We’re grateful, and so are a lot of area kids.”
Participation in the local United Way fundraising campaign has been an annual tradition for CMP and its staff. For decades, the Augusta-based electric utility has been a pacesetter for the United Way of Kennebec Valley’s annual campaign. But under the leadership of Herling, a longtime personal United Way supporter, the company and its employees picked up the pace this year, equipping scores of youngsters with much-needed school supplies and giving a boost to the annual campaign.
Recipients of the community’s generosity will include the Children’s Center, Southern Kennebec Child Development Corporation, Literacy Volunteers of Greater Augusta, the Boys and Girls Clubs of Kennebec Valley, and local schools.
“While our main job is to deliver power to homes and businesses across central and southern Maine, we’re more than happy to power dreams as well,” said Herling. “We’re confident these donations will be put to good use.”
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