United Way of Greater Cincinnati

NKU Student Is A Change Agent

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A freshman at Northern Kentucky University, Jayren Andrews has already long established himself as a change agent.

Northern Kentucky University student Jayren Andrews is a leader and role model.Wise beyond his years, he is a young man driven to be a voice, a leader, and a role model for his peers, his neighborhood, his network, and even his world. While attending Shroder High School, Jayren competed at the state level in track and was on the second team All-Conference in football; and in his senior year, was an award winning public speaker. By 17, he was president of the Avondale Youth Council, guiding other young people to making good decisions. He is also one of two youth selected to serve on the Cincinnati Poverty Collaborative Steering Committee, and is very involved in college.

“Being on the Collaborative’s Executive Board was an opportunity to represent my neighborhood, Avondale,” he told me. “My concern was digging down and coming up with substantial solutions to help get people out of poverty. That opportunity was humbling to be with so many different people who all have the same goal.”

When he thinks about his own life and his motivation, Jayren will tell you it is those trials and tribulations that are your ‘defining moments of character’ and that learning from one’s failures is a key to accomplishment. His mentors through the Cincinnati Youth Collaborative are among those who have influenced his growth. Jamie Wilson, his CYC AmeriCorps College Guide, allowed him to absorb his shine for the moment, come back and be humble. “She showed me that hard work is everything. There really isn’t anything that you can’t accomplish,” he said.

Jayren paused as he recalled another person who has influenced his life, his little brother who was gone too soon, a baby who didn’t live to see his first day. “I think about him every day. I want to show him what kind of big brother I could have been,” Jayren told me.

Most recently honored by the United Way of Greater Cincinnati with its 2017 Youth Leadership Award, last year the Cincinnati Youth Collaborative recognized Jayren among its mentees as a 2016 Outstanding Student Award winner for his determination in overcoming life obstacles to find success in his education and in life.

To my question about what Jayren would like to do with the rest of his life, he answered, “At the end of the day, I want to leave the world better than I came into it.”

To that, I say, that goal has already happened. And I have no doubt Jayren’s little baby brother is proud.

Cincinnati Area Donors Honored

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It has been such a privilege to be working with the Greater Cincinnati Planned Giving Council for the 7th year in promoting some of our region’s incredibly generous philanthropists through the Voices of Giving Awards. This year the organization honored donors on behalf of 25 nonprofit organizations whose important work is supported Jenny Berg with her father, Donald L. Neyer, and brother Dan Neyer at the Greater Cincinnati Planned Giving Council Voices of Giving Awardsby their decision to give a planned gift (and much more in heart and time). Those Greater Cincinnati philanthropists are strengthening local neighborhoods, families and individual lives through their actions.

“Our Voices of Giving honorees have such diverse interests, often with deep rooted passion from personal experiences. They represent the true spirit of philanthropy and their gifts will touch thousands of lives directly and indirectly in our region, for generations to come. Their donations will help these important causes that are close to their hearts to be sustainable for future generations,” said Voices of Giving Co-Chair Molly Talbot, VP of Advancement at St. Ursula Academy.

Several hundred guests attended the Awards Event that was held at CET and emceed by Local 12’s John Lomax.

2016 Honorees included: (please note that honorees from two organizations asked to be left out of publicity and are not listed) Carson Smith (honored posthumously) on behalf of the American Cancer Society; Fran Cohen on behalf of CET – Greater Cincinnati Television Educational Foundation; Joe and Sandy Dominiak on behalf of The Children’s Home of Cincinnati; Thomas Ernst Huenefeld on behalf of Cincinnati Museum Center; Digi France Schueler on behalf of Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park; Mary Rose J. Zink on behalf of Cincinnati Public Radio; Mace Justice on behalf of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra; Dr. Steve and Diane Dumbauld on behalf of the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden; Patricia Armstrong on behalf of the CISE Foundation; Doug Spitler on behalf of Episcopal Retirement Services; Richard Hildbold (honored posthumously) on behalf of the Freestore Foodbank; Jerome and Suzanne Teller on behalf of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute and Isaac M. Wise Temple; Val Schube on behalf of Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation; Rick and Julie Kantor on behalf of the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati; Rev. Dr. Joseph and Blanch Graham on behalf of Life Enriching Communities Foundation – Twin Towers; Donald L. Neyer on behalf of Life Enriching Communities Foundation – Twin Lakes; Lawrence Klosterkemper on behalf of Mount St. Joseph University and Roger Bacon High School; Jerry W. Warner, Ph.D. on behalf of Northern Kentucky University; Bill and Helene Sedwick on behalf of People Working Cooperatively; Margaret ‘Tuck’ Fraser (honored posthumously) on behalf of Ronald McDonald House Charities of Greater Cincinnati; Ursulines of Cincinnati on behalf of Saint Ursula Academy; Lisa O’Brien on behalf of United Way of Greater Cincinnati; and Dan and Julie Murphy on behalf of Xavier University.

Please click the link to read the honorees’ brief bios:  2016 Voices of Giving honoree bios

2016 Voices of Giving Awards

The Greater Cincinnati Planned Giving Council is a professional association for people whose work includes developing, marketing, and administering charitable planned gifts for non-profit institutions and a variety of other legal and financial settings.

United Way Success Benefits Everyone

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Congratulations to the United Way of Greater Cincinnati, its staff, volunteer leadership and army of community volunteers and companies who together campaigned vehemently to raise critical dollars for our region’s very important social services!

United Way of Greater Cincinnati Exceeded Its 2015 Fundraising Goal

photo courtesy of United Way of Greater Cincinnati

It was announced last week that the 2015 United Way Campaign surpassed its $62 million goal – raising $62,000,053! And it is the very first time that the campaign has grown by $1 million since 2007.

This year’s fundraising efforts, which kicked off Aug. 26, also included 18 new donors of $25,000 or more and 115 donors of $10,000 or more.

That is huge!

It is an incredible feat raising that kind of money in a few short months. What those numbers speak about the generosity of our community and the heart of thousands who contributed through time, talent and resources is truly touching.

We live in a region where people connect and care. Neighbors, co-workers, families and friends share in the responsibility of the health and vitality of our community greater than themselves. They understand that unity builds strength and together we are all better.

The United Way of Greater Cincinnati supports a whopping 280 community programs in our region. That $62+ million raised supports efforts helping troubled, abused and/or underserved youth to grow in positive ways; valuable therapy and emotional support for individuals and families impacted by diseases and other health conditions, financial crises, or other traumas; education and other efforts to help parents be better parents; work to empower and include people affected by disability; quality of life efforts for our community’s older adults.

“Reaching this goal in our centennial year is a major accomplishment and a testament to the incredible generosity of this community – one which recognizes the importance of ensuring children get off to a strong start and achieve success in school, families have the financial stability that can come with gainful employment, and individuals lead healthy lives,” United Way of Greater Cincinnati President Robert Reifsnyder told the Enquirer.

A major accomplishment, absolutely! To everyone who contributed to making that success happen, thank you!

Voices Of Giving Awards Honor Greater Cincinnati Philanthropists

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In our region, we are fortunate to have so very many diverse causes that are each enriching neighborhoods and lives in unique ways. Their important work would not be possible without a team of dedicated staff, volunteers, and donors.

For the past five years, it has been such a privilege to work with the Greater Cincinnati Planned Giving Council committee helping to spread awareness of very generous people who are helping to ensure our community’s valuable nonprofit organizations can be sustainable in the future. They recently honored 27 philanthropists including Jim Huizenga, as a professional advisor, with Voices of Giving Awards. (You’ll be seeing more information in local news print over the next few months.) All philanthropists honored have made a bequest or planned gift to their favorite charity.

Mike and Marilyn Kremzar are examples of our humanitarian leaders who have committed years to empowering people who have been down on their luck

Mike Van Oflen, Tony Lavatori, Tonya Lavatori, Mike Kremzar, Marilyn Kremzar, Kurt Reiber and Mindy Hammer

Mike Van Oflen, Tony Lavatori, Tonya Lavatori, Mike Kremzar, Marilyn Kremzar, Kurt Reiber and Mindy Hammer photo credit: Paula Norton

through the Freestore Foodbank. Since joining its Board in 1984, Mike helped create the hugely successful Cincinnati COOKS!, a culinary job training program that not only provides nutritious afterschool meals to children at risk of hunger but also has seen more than 1,200 adult graduates move on to gainful employment. The Kremzars named the Freestore Foodbank as a beneficiary of their IRA.

There are so many wonderful stories like theirs of why charitable giving is such an important part of their lives. Please click the link to read more about all of the honorees. 2015 Voices of Giving Honoree backgrounds

 

Other honorees include:

Deacon David A. Klingshirn on behalf of The Athenaeum of Ohio;
Alan and Dianne Thomas on behalf of the Brighton Center;
Marjorie and Roger Santor (posthumously) on behalf of CET – Greater Cincinnati Television Educational Foundation;
Robert Buechner on behalf of The Children’s Home of Cincinnati;
John H. White, Jr. on behalf of Cincinnati Museum Center;
Albert W. Vontz III on behalf of Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park;
Barb and Mort Nicholson on behalf of Cincinnati Public Radio;
Norita Aplin and Stanley Ragle on behalf of Cincinnati Symphony and Pops Orchestra;
Jack Kirby on behalf of Episcopal Retirement Homes;
Mike and Marilyn Kremzar on behalf of Freestore Foodbank;
John Isidor and Sandy Kaltman on behalf of the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati;
Burke Neville on behalf of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation;
Peggy Kite on behalf of Life Enriching Communities Foundation – Twin Lakes;
Dr. George Rieveschl, Jr. (posthumously) on behalf of the Lloyd Library and Museum;
Mona Morrow on behalf of The Salvation Army;
Emily Pan on behalf of Saint Joseph Home;
Mary Kay Pastura Hauser on behalf of St. Ursula Academy;
The Calonge Family on behalf of the United Way of Greater Cincinnati.
Note: one of the honorees did not want to be recognized in Event promotion.

Jim Huizenga, senior program officer at The Greater Cincinnati Foundation,
honored as a professional advisor, was nominated by Saint Joseph Home

Platinum Presenting Sponsors of the 17th annual Voices of Giving Awards are The John A. Schroth Family Charitable Trust, PNC Bank Trustee, and The Salvation Army.  Silver Sponsors include Graydon, Head and Ritchey LLP, the Johnson Charitable Gift Fund, Life Enriching Communities, Smith Beers Yunker & Company, Inc., and Xavier University.  The Event was hosted by CET and emceed by Local 12’s John Lomax.

“Our Voices of Giving honorees represent the true spirit of philanthropy and their gifts are enhancing the quality of life for our community, now and in the future,” said Sue Ellen Stuebing, vice president of the board of The Greater Cincinnati Planned Giving Council. “We thank them not only for their generosity but also for allowing us to recognize them.  By doing so, they are inspiring others in our community to demonstrate that everyone can make a lasting impact by leaving a legacy.

Voices of Giving honorees photo credit: Paula Norton

Voices of Giving honorees
photo credit: Paula Norton

The 2015 event was co-chaired by Telly McGaha and Molly Talbot. Committee members included Lori Asmus, Carol Derkson, Bruce Favret, Misty Griesinger, Doug Heeston, Anna Hehman, Bill Hitch, Mary Alice Koch, Michelle Mancini, Tracy Monroe, Carol Serrone, Carol Stevie, Sue Ellen Stuebing and Dan Virzi.

The Greater Cincinnati Planned Giving Council is a professional association for people whose work includes developing, marketing, and administering charitable planned gifts for non-profit institutions and a variety of other legal and financial settings.

 

 

 

United Way Of Greater Cincinnati Campaign Success Will Impact Thousands

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Yesterday hundreds of executives, employees, organizers, fundraisers and volunteers all gathered on our downtown Foutain Square. This time last year I was among them. They are the voice of the United Way of Greater Cincinnati and together, over the next couple of months, they will all be working toward a common goal – raising $62,850,000 for our United Way of Greater Cincinnati Campaign Kick-Offregion’s future.

Talk about a lofty goal!

“Centering our lives on making a difference for others by creating healthy communities to live, work and raise families is a noble calling for all of us. In Greater Cincinnati, United Way is the catalyst that helped spark strategic thinking about how we develop and sustain our region as a healthy place for everyone to live and work,” said Campaign Co-Chair Michael Connelly, president and CEO, Catholic Health Partners, who is co-chairing the 2013 United Way of Greater Cincinnati annual fundraising campaign with his wife, Sally, a community volunteer leader.

“If the goal is reached, it will be the highest amount this United Way has ever raised,” says Michael Connelly. Last year the total was $61,050,000 – $50,000 over goal.

“This year’s goal strongly reinforces our message that Bold Goals need Bold Resources,” says Sally Connelly.  “We need to raise as much as we can to achieve the Bold Goals and help children, individuals and families throughout the region.”

I know firsthand of this need for success. For twenty plus years I have worked in our regions, helping nonprofits doing very important work to tell their story, to forge relationships. I have seen the faces on parents who received financial and mental support to improve the lives of their families. I have seen people overcome obstacles they never thought they were capable of doing. I have seen the impact of a caring hand. On any given day, tens of thousands of lives are touched by work of a United Way funded agency or program.

This is a campaign that is about all of us. Beyond fundraising, United Way is asking the community to become advocates for change. People can join United Way of Greater Cincinnati’s advocacy network through its website. Community members can also find more volunteer opportunities through the United Way Volunteer Connection.

It all ends October 30, 2013. To learn more, please visit www.uwgc.org.

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