Spirit of Caring, Difference Makers awarded at Annual Meeting

United Way of Champaign County honored community volunteers and caring businesses at the Annual Meeting on Friday, March 1, 2013. The Spirit of Caring Award was presented to Curt Anderson, the East Central Illinois Building and Construction Trades Council, and Human Kinetics.

Spirit of Caring

The Spirit of Caring Award honors individual volunteers, businesses and/or organizations whose values and concerns for humankind are demonstrated through their leadership, service and commitment to the people of our community.

ECI Building and Construction Trades Council

The East Central Illinois Building and Construction Trades Council (ECIBCTC) and its member unions are an integral part of the fabric of Champaign County. The labor community and United Way have worked in partnership for decades. Local labor sponsors an annual charity golf outing supporting the “Getting Ready for Kindergarten Calendar”, several food mobiles over the years and they were among the first to help establish area high school food pantries. From the many hours of serving on local advisory committees and boards and countless hours spent on volunteer projects, ECIBCTC provides a solid foundation for social services in Champaign County.

Human Kinetics

Human Kinetics has long, rich history with United Way and this year was their best campaign ever. To date their employees have donated over $150,000 including many Pillar leadership gifts. Their United Way campaign is only a portion of what they do to help in the community. For the past 21 years, they have embraced the community service spirit by sponsoring Girl Scout troops in Shadowood, organizing the Twin City Twosome, setting up a local park with the Champaign Park District and providing a positive force in the Bristol Park neighborhood. All of this is made possible by their active Community Service Committee and leaders who are dedicated to Corporate Social Responsibility.

Curt Anderson

Curt Anderson has provided extraordinary leadership in many capacities for United Way and other organizations in Champaign County. Through his 10 year service on the UWCC Board, Curt has served in multiple volunteer roles including two years as Board Chair. His commitment to this organization is unwavering and he has been an important steward during this time of change and growth. Curt is also a dedicated volunteer for many organizations including American Heart Association, Rotary, Chamber of Commerce and others too numerous to mention. United Way and our community have both greatly benefited from Curt’s passion, knowledge and vision.

Difference Makers

United Way salutes individuals who have made an impact on our organization and in our community. Their generosity, ability to give, advocate and volunteer makes them stand out to their peers as true “difference makers.” United Way is proud to award these individuals the “Difference Maker” award.

Centennial High School Interact Club

After a presentation about community need by United Way staff, the Interact Club went to work! This year was their second Annual Haunted High, held at the high school for the community. They collected gently used shoes to give to kids, and also collected $1200 to donate to the Emergency Shelter for Families program.

Barb Daly, Retired Champaign School District Unit 4

Barb’s tireless efforts to help children are making a difference everyday. She was a member of the Wes Moore event planning team, and most recently has spearheaded the opening of food pantries in the two local high schools.

Nick Glumac, University of Illinois CCFD Chair

University of Illinois is the largest workplace campaign for United Way bringing in close to 25% of our entire campaign dollars. If it wasn’t for the dedication of the CCFD Chair, Nick, we wouldn’t be able to support all of the great services we do in Champaign County.

Janice Mitchell, Urbana School District #116

Janice Mitchell expanded the experiences of youth from the Urbana Neighborhood Connections Center by bringing youth to both the Pillar Celebration with Wes Moore and his return visit with youth from throughout Champaign County. They designed questions for a book club reading of Wes’ book, “The Other Wes Moore” and attended a small group meeting with Wes after the presentation in the Parkland Gymnasium, asking relevant questions about his experiences and sharing ways his book (and other books) have impacted their lives.

Todd Petersen, Firelands Group LLC

Todd is a long-time United Way volunteer and current Board member at Don Moyer Boys and Girls Club: This past year the Boys and Girls Club went through many changes. Todd stepped in, without hesitation, to lend his expertise, roll up his sleeves and help the Club through some very challenging times. He really made a difference for those kids, and for the community.

Kerri Spear, City of Champaign

City of Champaign-Neighborhood Services Program Manager, has been a long time United Way volunteer serving on allocation review teams, the Basic Needs Vision Council and the Community Impact Committee. Kerri was an instrumental member of the emergency shelter for families steering team bringing her experience to the table as one of the original organizers of Austin’s Place Emergency Winter Shelter for Women.

Nancy Willamon, Parkland College

We sincerely appreciate the efforts of Nancy Willamon as she made all the arrangements for us to have over 500 youth and youth leaders from 24 schools and 27 youth programs in Champaign County at the perfect venue for the “Return Visit of Wes Moore,” at the Parkland Gymnasium.