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Archive for Thursday, March 6, 2008

New United Way chairwoman named

March 6, 2008

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United Way names campaign chair

United Way of Douglas County accounced it's 2008-09 fundraising campaign chair on Wednesday. Enlarge video

Judy Wright will lead the fundraising effort for the 2008-2009 United Way of Douglas County campaign.

Judy Wright will lead the fundraising effort for the 2008-2009 United Way of Douglas County campaign.

The task of raising millions of dollars in a year and doing it under a bleak economic forecast doesn't daunt Judy Wright one bit.

"Sometimes when times get hard, I find the people in our community really come together, and so I hope that will be the case," said the 2008-2009 United Way of Douglas County campaign chairwoman.

The United Way announced Wright's appointment on Wednesday.

Wright will take on the annual challenge of raising funds to aid more than 20 agencies that provide services to people in the community. She says she's eager to begin because fundraising is practically second nature to her.

She is the assistant vice president and director of the Chancellors Club of Kansas University's Endowment Association as well as the vice president of the newly established Haskell Endowment Association.

Wright was also involved with the United Way board in the early 1990s. She said the reason she chose to accept the United Way's invitation to help was the "professional, diligent and enthusiastic" United Way staff and those whom they serve.

"In the end, I guess I would say it's all about the people, you know, so I'm very honored. I'm humbled to be invited to do this," she said.

Colleen Gregoire, vice president and campaign manager for the United Way of Douglas County, said Wright's connections, knowledge and love for Lawrence are what made her an attractive candidate.

Wright said she hopes to continue the success of the 2007-08 campaign co-chairs Chuck and Karen Warner, who helped lead the United Way chapter to one of its highest campaign totals: about $1.7 million.

An increasing need in the community coupled with a weak economy present other challenges. But after visiting several agencies last week to learn what their needs are, Wright said she's hopeful that obstacle can be overcome.

"When our economy gets really tight and discretionary money is scarcer, it really hits home on the families that are working very, very hard to make ends meet," she said. "So I can foresee that the people in the community that support the United Way will look at the situation and say, 'If it's hard for us, can we even imagine what it's like for people that don't have the resources we do? And we need to help.'"

Wright will select a committee to help lead the campaign, which begins in the fall.

Comments

Douglas Yetman 6 years, 9 months ago

An angry night for Pogo apparently...

Your assessment of this appointment reveals great ignorance. The campaign chair position for the United Way is a volunteer position. So to make it clear to you...Ms Wright will be DONATING her time, energy, and clear professional credentials and connections to help raise money for the United Way. A prominent and well connected leader in the community is essential to opening doors to money to help already strapped orgainizations.

Even if she were to be paid, it would be money well spent to have someone like her bringing in huge donations in support of the United Way agencies.

I would encourage you to make a donation and/or volunteer...so you can see first hand how everyone is being "pimped out."

toefungus 6 years, 9 months ago

The United Way is one of the great frauds of our time. The best way to give money is to give it directly. The United Way siphons off thousands for its owns parties, advertising, and salaries of its executive director and staff. The "Chair" is picked for their connections to business and people that are part of the elite club in the community. The business owners compete on putting the whip to their employees to give. The winner is warmly embraced by the United Way gang. It is a shakedown that should be stopped.

Noweigh 6 years, 9 months ago

Pogo, et al.... The drive chairperson position is completely volunteer and requires literally hundreds of hours...at night, on the weekends, during the day, etc. Judy Wright has spent a career giving to this community. I'm sure you're not able to read this right now because you're out also volunteering your time, talent and resources to help others. Or beter yet, volunteer to be the drive chairperson next year and see if you feel "pimped out". With the predicatable negativity about everything that comes from so many in this town, it's a wonder anyone would ever volunteer. Hopefully you won't ever need the services of a UWay agency. If you do, thank all the "pimps" that helped them raise needed funding.

volunteer 6 years, 9 months ago

I retired recently and decided to volunteer a couple of half days a week. I looked up the number for Volunteer Center, called it, and the pleasant woman answering said, "United Way of Lawrence."

The process is fairly easy. A background check, an orientation meeting, and boom, you can volunteer.

Maybe somebody at someplace has done something inappropriate on behalf of United Way. But when I wanted to volunteer, the United Way helped me find a "good fit."

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