United Way Annual Meeting to focus on results, strategies

Simon BissonBy Simon Bisson, Interim President and CEO, United Way of Greater Cleveland

There are many ways to track the passing years. Many people shake their heads at how quickly birthdays and personal anniversaries come and go. For some, it’s a favorite holiday. At work, it may be the end of a fiscal year. While I am blessed with many annual celebrations in my personal life, my United Way year is marked by two momentous annual events: our fundraising campaign every fall and our Annual Meeting every spring.

This year’s Annual Meeting is at 11:45 a.m. Friday, March 4, at the Renaissance Cleveland Hotel.

Board chair Rick Buoncore and I will use this opportunity in front of more than 1,000 community members and United Way supporters to urge them to increase their engagement with us. We’ll discuss how we’re advancing the community through education, income and health, and demonstrate the impact we’ve made over the past year. And we’ll present the Volunteer of the Year award to a very deserving individual, and pay special tribute to Eaton for their 100-year partnership with us.

Rick will also end his term of service as United Way’s board chairman and welcome our incoming chair, Marc Byrnes, chairman of Oswald Companies.

Campaign co-chairs Paul Dolan, chairman & CEO, Cleveland Indians Baseball Co., and Deborah Read, Managing Partner, Thompson Hine LLP, will report on the results of the 2015-16 campaign and pass the baton to the co-chairs of the upcoming campaign.

Events such as Fall Ball, Stuff the Bus with Books, Rock the CATWALK, and Red Nose Day will be discussed, along with some new innovative initiatives like Club Connect reading centers. We will acknowledge our strong partnerships with Geauga and Medina counties. And we expect to be graced by several local leaders, including remarks by Mayor Frank Jackson and Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish.

It’s serious business, but we also know how to have a good time. Our meeting will be punctuated by appearances from the energy-boosting scholars of City Year, a talented America SCORES student poet, and new videos highlighting our work in education, income, health and our 2-1-1 service.

As we mark the passing of another successful year and surge ahead into the next one, our Annual Meeting provides the perfect opportunity for you to reconnect with United Way … or strengthen that connection. We hope to see you there!

For more information, please visit unitedwaycleveland.org/annualmeeting.

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