United Way Concludes 75th Annual Meeting

United Way celebrates 75 years and successful campaign at virtual Annual Meeting
Winchester, VA, 2/18/2021 - United Way of Northern Shenandoah Valley held a virtual celebratory conclusion to their 2020 Campaign on February 18th, 2021 at 12:30pm. Community members and businesses across the Northern Shenandoah Valley who generously contributed through workplace campaigns, special events and individual gifts for the fundraising campaign, gathered to celebrate the incredible total raised locally in 2020.

The event featured the renaming of the United Way NSV Volunteer of the Year award in honor of Todd Thompson of Winchester, VA, a long-time United Way and community volunteer.

“I could not think of a more deserving person than Todd to name our Volunteer of the Year award after. He has been a leader and advocate of our United Way for years, exceedingly dedicated and giving, always keeping us and our community a priority. We will miss him dearly and will think of him every year when we say his name, awarding this honor in his memory,” said Nadine Pottinga, CEO or United Way of Northern Shenandoah Valley.

For more than 25 years, the award has been presented annually to an outstanding local volunteer whose individual commitment to helping others exemplifies the tradition and spirit of caring. This year, the annual award recognized Mark Merrill for his distinguished volunteer service to the community, United Way participation and service, and sustained and prolonged service to helping others.

“I am incredibly honored and humbled to have received the first ever Todd Thompson Volunteer of the Year Award. Todd has been a remarkable volunteer, and I am so happy United Way chose to honor him with this award. I feel quite humbled and pale in comparison to the work Todd has done over the years. Thank you to the United Way board for awarding me with this honor, I again am very humbled and appreciative.” Said 2020 Todd Thompson Volunteer of the Year Award Winner Mark Merrill.

At the 75th Annual Meeting, Dr. Damon DeArment, United Way NSV Campaign Chair, was pleased to announce an incredibly successful fundraising year, one which will likely conclude at the same amount raised as the previous year when books close at the end of their fiscal year in July.

“At United Way, we have a remarkable team and campaign cabinet that should be very proud of their efforts. We had an incredible challenge ahead of us in 2020, fundraising during COVID-19. But, I am proud to say that our team persevered, staying on par with previous years when we expected to be facing a deficit,” said DeArment, 2020 Campaign Chair.

“Our success this year really just comes down to a lot of hard work and having an incredibly generous community that may have been struggling themselves, but in the end still chose to give back and support their neighbors,” said Hilary Legge, Manager of Resource Development for United Way NSV.

The event also recognized outstanding campaign contributions and progress:
 5 of 9 Campaign Divisions have exceeded 100% of their goal
o Commerce/Small Business raised 156.1% of their goal
o Public Service raised 123.4% of their goal
o Individual Gifts raised 141.4% of their goal
o Professionals raised 140.4% of their goal
o Special Events raised 107.8% of their goal
 Commerce/Small Business, Individuals, and Professionals divisions all exceeded their totals from the previous year
 125 businesses ran campaigns, including 32 schools
 Over 1,300 individuals made donations

United Way NSV will immediately begin distributing funds throughout the spring to area nonprofits and agencies who apply for funding through the Impact Grant program.
Additional awards were given out at the 75th Annual Meeting. The Youth Volunteer of the Year was given to Amy Vargas-Aguillon, a senior from John Handley High School. Vargas-Aguillon was selected by the Volunteer of the Year Committee for her exceptional leadership ability and commitment to community service.

Three additional awards will be given for the Employee Campaign Coordinator of the Year, awarded to Jessica Neff from First Bank; Campaign Volunteer of the Year, given to Blake Curtis of First Bank; and the Rookie of the Year award, given to Blake Watts of Winchester Radiology.