Pillars Lead the Way

Pillars attending event

In 1985, a special call was put out by United Way. The Campaign Chair asked our community’s leaders to step forward and make a commitment to our community. In that first year, 100 people answered the call!  These Charter Pillars formed the foundation of United Way’s Pillar Leadership Giving Program.

Today, Pillar Leadership Giving includes several giving levels and comprises 73% of our Annual Campaign. And an astounding one-third of Pillars increase their gift by 10% or more annually, joining our Pillar Plus group! 

Pillars have the option to receive our IMPACT newsletter, which highlights the latest success stories and news from United Way. Additionally, they receive invitations to special events like our annual Pillar Celebration and have the option of having their name printed in our Annual Report.

At the 2019 Pillar Celebration, Campaign Chairs Jason and Lisa Rector encouraged all in attendance to reach out to just one person and ask them to become a Pillar. “Just imagine the impact that would have on our community, if we had 225 new Pillars!” exclaimed Lisa Rector.


Well, we can imagine it. 225 new Pillars would increase funding to local education, health and financial stability programs by over $100,000 – changing thousands of lives.

You can become a Pillar

An annual donation of $500 or more to United Way - just $9.61 a week – qualifies for Bronze Pillar status. With your gift, you’ll make a big impact in our community and demonstrate your commitment to improving the health, education and financial stability of everyone in Champaign County.

Make your Pillar Gift today online, or join via payroll deduction during your United Way Workplace Giving Campaign!

We would like to thank the 2019 Pillar Sponsors: Busey, Barham Benefit Group, Coldwell Banker Commercial Devonshire Realty, Martin Hood, and Thomas Mamer. Their support covers the administrative costs of the entire Pillar program, including newsletters, Pillar Celebration, new Pillar outreach, and all mailings.