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United Way more than 75 percent to goal of $2 million

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Lance Coleman
Senior reporter
Blount Today

United Way supporters have raised $1,516,572.43 so far since August, said 2006 campaign chairman Mike Lewis during a
luncheon Friday, Oct. 27, at Broadway United Methodist Church.

"That’s 75.8 percent of our goal. We are not done. We’re really excited," campaign chairman Mike Lewis said.

Campaign Division breakdowns reported include:

  • Major Firms, Tony Thompson, chair, $733,578 - 79 percent of goal;
  • Commerce, Kevin Painter, chair, $213,432 - 77 percent of goal;
  • Industry/Building Trades, Scott Justice, chair, $112,179 - 59 percent of goal;
  • General Business, David Conner, chair, $115,734 - 88.7 percent of goal;
  • Public Service, Mike Lewis reported for Tom Hatcher, chair, $123,749 - 61.3 percent of goal;
  • Professional, Joe Ingram chair, $79,518 - 73.3 percent of goal;
  • Special Gifts/Residential, Brenda Pilson, chair, $121,973 - 88.9 percent of goal.

Lewis reported for The Pillars Society, co-chaired by Denny and Cindy Mayes, that $329,415 had been raised to date, which includes 221 members. Lewis also reported for The Alexis de Tocqueville Society, chaired by Kevin Clayton, that $196,000 had been raised, which includes 18 members. Leadership Giving has raised a total of $525,415. Monies raised through The Pillars Society and The Alexis de Tocqueville Society filter through all campaign division, which benefit from their efforts.

Carol Clotfelter, development director with the Tanasi Council of the Girl Scouts of America spoke to the audience about the importance of that United Way agency to girls throughout the area. Girl Scouting wouldn’t exist without community and United Way support, Clotfelter said, adding that Girl Scouting helps build girls with strong self confidence and self esteem. "Tanasi Girl Scout Council helps over 1,000 girls in Blount County," she said.

Lewis said Nov. 16 is the last official day of the effort. "Hopefully we can be through prior to that time. We’re really excited about where we are. We’re right on schedule with where we plan to be. It looks like we’ve got the $2 million goal in sight," he said. "If we can finish as strongly as we’ve been running the last couple months, it should be a goal we can attain. It’s exciting because it’s our first $2 million year. It’s even more exciting to look at where this campaign can go in future years."

Lewis said the campaign is important because United Way supports 23 different agencies and 56 different programs. Twenty-five thousand Blount County residents are assisted by United Way support though agencies and programs, Lewis said.

"Where else can you make that kind of impact with one donation?" Lewis asked. "I think that’s the impact United Way has -- that ability to help that numbers of people with a single donation."

Results from Gas Day have also been finalized.

More than $7,500 was raised on Oct. 6 during the annual United Way Gas Day as Calloway, Downey and McNutt Oil companies donated $3,988.92. This was a portion of the day’s proceeds from gasoline purchases to the United Way of Blount County.

In addition, more than 150 community volunteers, including volunteers from the local law enforcement and fire departments, provided assistance by pumping gas and washing windows for customers. There was no charge for this service, but volunteers raised $3,532 in tips. This year’s event was chaired by Chief Larry Graves. United Way of Blount County raised a total of $7,520.99 from Gas Day.

Calloway, Downey and McNutt Oil Companies offered an incentive for the first time to customers and volunteers for Gas Day. If a customer donated to United Way by giving a tip, they could register to win one of three $100 pre-paid gas cards. Also, for all those that volunteered for Gas Day, they could register for one of three $25 pre-paid gas cards.

Winners of the $100 gas cards include Cecil Ogle, Cyndi Wilson and Lori Weir. Winners of the $25 gas cards include Steven Hammontree, Kevin James and Marcus Walker.

In conjunction with Gas Day, the Huddle House donated a percentage of their net sales from Friday, October 6. Owner Lynn Cox was happy to report that a donation of $250 was made to United Way of Blount County.

© 2006 blounttoday.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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