For the second consecutive year, the community was “Stronger Together.”
The United Way of Hamblen County announced Tuesday afternoon that $1,360,336 had been raised in the 2021 campaign, more than $10,000 above the campaign goal of $1,350,000.
“This year, we believed that our community would continue to support our agencies and we would meet our goal once again because we are ‘Stronger Together,’” 2021 Campaign Chairman David Slack said in reflecting this year’s campaign slogan.
Slack took time to compare the 2021 campaign versus the 2020 campaign.
“Both years had COVID-19 issues,” he said. “Both years had a dedicated cabinet of willing volunteers. While both years were different, the mission remained the same. The sign at the United Way office says it best: ‘United Way. The best way to help the most people.’”
United Way contributions will help those who may never know, never encounter, nor know how people have changed lives, Slack said.
“I have enjoyed the last two years,” Slack said. “There are individuals who have worked on the last two campaigns and for that I am grateful. We have had new cabinet chairs this year who have stepped up and exceeded their individual goals. For that, I thank you.”
Slack appreciated the attendance at the kickoff breakfast, the three report luncheons and Tuesday’s annual meeting.
The campaign summary provided by Slack included the 14 top contributors to the 2021 campaign: JTEKT Automotive, Rogers Petroleum, Colortech, Howmet, Meritor, MAHLE, Wallace Hardware, Rich Products, Morristown-Hamblen Healthcare System, First Horizon Bank, Strate Insurance Group, Morristown Utilities, HealthStar Physicians and the Hamblen County School System.
“Collectively, these companies raised $755,086, or 56 percent, of the total amount raised,” Slack said.
Slack recognized the campaign’s division chairs and provided highlights of their fundraising efforts.
In the Major Firms I division, led by Justin Cook, employee giving increased by 34 percent at Meritor. In Major Firms II, led by Roni Snyder, Colortech employee giving increased by $12,747. In Major Firms III, led by Tammie Ogle, Sonoco increased employee pledges by 24 percent.
Other companies and organizations with increases in employee giving included Crescent Center Drugs (98 percent), Morristown Area Chamber of Commerce (53 percent), Citizen Tribune (39 percent), Carlyle Construction (25 percent), Hamblen County Government employees (30 percent) and Purkey, Carter Compton, Swann & Carter (23 percent).
New board members approved by vote to serve three-year terms included Jim Clawson, Hamblen County Government; Gregg Harrell, Harrell Business Consulting; Noel Montepeque, Monte Labor; Becky Skelton, RE/MAX Real Estate Ten and Tim Wild, Wild Building Contractors.
Returning board members, also to serve three years terms, include Frankie Cox, Jerry Cranford, Dave Gilles and Shirley Holt. Tammie Ogle, Rich Products, will fill a two-year unexpired term.
The Budget and Allocations Committee met with United Way agency directors in May of 2021 to review budgets, programs and requests for continued or additional funding. The meetings resulted in a unanimously approved campaign goal of $1,350,000.
“There were 227 volunteer hours, over the course of four evenings spent to determine agency allocations,” Committee Chair Drew Rowe said as he recognized committee members present. “The committee is charged with the responsibility of making sure the community’s contributions to the United Way of Hamblen County are used responsibly.”
Loaned executives received a token of appreciation during the meeting. Last year, the volunteers made 62 presentations to companies who were holding employee campaigns.
United Way statistics indicate employee giving increases an average of 30 percent when a loaned executive is utilized.
“I received the final totals (Tuesday) morning and I realized that was the best, happiest part of the program,” Slack said. “The second happiest part is telling who is going to do this next year.”
Rowe, plant manager at Sonoco Flexible Packing, was then announced by Slack as the 2022 Campaign Chair.
“Although Drew has been a part of our community for just a short time he has quickly stepped up and been active with United Way,” Slack said.
Rowe has been a member of the United Way Board of Directors for five years and has served as its vice president. He has participated for four years on the Budget & Allocations committee and attended every meeting. He chaired the Major Firms II Division in 2019.
“I have complete confidence Drew will be prepared to lead the campaign next year,” Slack said. “This past year, he chaired the Pacesetter Committee.”
“We have had a good year considering COVID-19 and all the challenges we have faced,” Board President Carl Storms said. “Thank you all for your support.”