United Way Wraps Up 2013 – Recognizes Volunteers!

United Way of East Central Iowa held its 2013 Annual Meeting on June 18, 2013.

Reviewing the year

At this event, we honored community members for their involvement with United Way and shared highlights from the year.   Additionally, we recognized people and a company that provide exceptional service, leadership and philanthropic commitment to the community through the John B. Northcott Award, the Community Philanthropist Award and the Spirit Award.

Event photos

Click on the photo to advance the slideshow quicker.

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The program

Greg Neumeyer, 2012-13 Board of Directors Chair, BankIowa

Thanks to everyone present today for your continued support of United Way. As volunteers and contributors you help make the community a better place.

We are at capacity for this event for the second year in a row!

Thank you to our event sponsors: Bradley and Riley as well as McGladrey.

A couple of highlights of the year…

About 40 community partners work with United Way to address community needs in the area of education, income and health. Together we invest millions in our community’s progress. Over the past three years we have made significant progress and thank you for your partnerships.

thank you digitalOf course, we couldn’t do all the work we do without your donations. Last year, for the sixth time in a row, we’ve raised more than $10 million. Thanks to Marc and Cathy Gullickson for their leadership as last year’s campaign chairs. More than 500 companies and 22,000 donors participated in last year’s campaign. That’s outstanding! Thank you everyone. Last but not least, Ron Olson was last year’s vice chair and has already set his goals high for this year. Jack and Matt Evans will be his vice chairs this year.

United Way website receives national awardLet’s not forget about improvements in our communication strategies. The marketing team has shared many stories throughout the year that highlight how your dollars are impacting our community. The team also recently received a national award. The Content Management System Association recognized our website as the website of the year in the WordPress category.

Congratulations to everyone involved… now, there are many more highlights, though. Let’s take a look.

Greg Neumeyer

As you saw it was a good year. We’ve accomplished a lot, but there’s still a lot to do…

Wendy Nielsen, United Way Young Leaders Society, Cedar Rapids Bank & Trust

Greg, did you know that only 50 percent of low-income children are ready for kindergarten when they enter, in contrast to 72 percent of higher-income peers. This leads to many negative outcomes, as many of these students will have troubles catching up to their peers. The RED Ahead program is one way that United Way tries to change this…


Tiffany Green, RED Ahead parent: Since going to RED Ahead I have noticed that Rylinn has been very interested in books and very interested in reading. She loves the alphabet, loves writing.  I think it’s great for her.

Reading: “I like the geeling on the ceiling and the zower in the shower.  Zower, shower.”

Diana Strahan, HACAP – RED Ahead:  When a family comes into RED Ahead, I usually demonstrate activities, ways of talking to their child, ways of reading to their child, I give them a book, I go over things they can do at home to encourage the language development.


Stu Haker, Board of Directors, Financial Stability Solutions Team, TrueNorth

It’s great to hear the things that are being done. Together we can make this community better.

But we also know that 12,000 children in Linn County are eligible for free and reduced meals during the school year, but only 726 children received meals daily last summer.

We worked with the Iowa Department of Education, schools and youth organizations in the community to identify ways we could expand our reach to meet the local needs of youth in the summer and leverage federal resources to do so. From 2011 to 2012 alone meals were increased 146 percent from around 22,000 meals to about 54,000 meals.

Jim Haddad, United Way Board of Directors, 2-1-1 Advisory Board

We also see a need in help with tax returns every year. During this most recent tax season our United Way 2-1-1 scheduled tax appointments and our partners completed 3,528 returns that returned $6.3 million in federal refunds to the community. Volunteer tax preparers help with this project!

John, Tax Volunteer

I volunteer at least 30 hours a week and I work 10 weeks or more so at least 300 hours a week doing the volunteering with taxes.

Tax Client

I saw an advertisement on the 2-1-1 number and so we called.  In fact, we had John do ours last year and felt very comfortable with the program.

I called 2-1-1 and they just made an appointment for me, very simple. Real happy with everything.  I’d recommend it very highly.


Lisa Henderson, Women’s Leadership Initiative chair

We also know that negative life experiences that we go through as children affect us for the rest of our lives. the more of those experiences, the harder our lives could be. These are called Adverse Childhood Experiences and United Way is also trying to address their effects on the community.

ACEs event Video: Adverse childhood experiences, I’m convinced – – I’m going to lead with the finale is – – I’m totally convinced that this is the most important public health problem ever.  I mean we’ve dealt with a lot of important public health problems over time, you know, infectious diseases and other issues overcoming, in some places, nutritional problems, but this is the “Mac Daddy.”

“One of the exciting things happening in this field is people from all disciplines are coming together,” he said. “This is a quote from Dr. James Heckman who is a Nobel Prize winning economist and he says, ‘In the brain, as in the economy, getting it right the first time is ultimately more effective and less costly than trying to fix it later.’  I think that’s a really neat statement for two reasons. Number one, here we have an economist working with neurobiologists and child development people, pediatricians, and money does talk.  I believe this is a moral issue to address these things, but in our culture money talks and if we can talk about saving money by doing something, that gives us more momentum.”

Greg Neumeyer

Wendy, Lisa, Stu and Jim are some of our outstanding volunteers who help us improve the community. As you heard from them there are a lot of community issues to focus on still. But we are working on them. Together we can make this community great.


We couldn’t improve the community without our great donors, companies, volunteers and business leaders. It’s now time to recognize some of them. Every year, we recognize some of the most outstanding individuals, companies and volunteers.

The John B. Northcott Award recognizes volunteers who have been of outstanding service to United Way of East Central Iowa.

This year’s honorees …. the 2012 campaign chairs – Marc and Cathy Gullickson.

Marc and Cathy Gullickson are stellar examples of community volunteers. As life long supporters of United Way, Marc has served on the Board of Directors, the Trustees and has been board chair. Cathy joined him in 2012 to chair the campaign and still remain active board members. In addition they have served on numerous volunteer boards. Cathy has had a long career in fundraising at Mercy Hospital Foundation, and has consulted with numerous nonprofits. Marc has helped many nonprofits with facility plans: the Human Services Campus, CSPS, to name a few. These two people have demonstrated integrity, excellence and leadership in everything they do in the community.

Congratulations, Marc and Cathy!

Greg Neumeyer:

The 2012 Community Philanthropist Award is awarded to a person with  outstanding civic and  charitable responsibility.

This year’s honoree: Joe Schimberg, of Schimberg Co.

Joe Schimberg is a quiet and generous philanthropist. As the CEO of Schimberg Company Joe demonstrates his ethics and principles in the way he treats his employees. Always courteous and caring, he has created a sense of family within a very successful business and models community spirit through his investments in many nonprofits. Joe’s company has been a long time supporter of United Way and his company employees, as well as the leadership give generously each year. During critical times, Joe has always been willing to help when asked and never wants or expects recognition. Joe, his company and family are true philanthropists.

Congratulations, Joe.

Greg Neumeyer:

Finally, it’s my pleasure to announce this year’s company recognized with the Spirit Award. This award goes to a company and its employees who demonstrate exceptional philanthropic commitment and  community involvement.

This year’s Spirit Award goes to the United Fire Group and its employees.

United Fire is lead by an energetic and dedicated volunteer Campaign Committee. United Fire and its employees have consistently remained one of the top ten contributors to our United Way for over a decade and have invested over $3.3 million in our community though gifts to United Way.

The United Fire team encourages members to enrich their lives though volunteerism. They have communicated community volunteer opportunities internally and are regular participants in the Day of Caring.

Congratulations United Fire Group and employees.

Greg Neumeyer:

With that it’s my pleasure to announce the outgoing and incoming board members and leadership chairs.

Every year, we thank our outgoing board members and welcome new board members to our 30-member board of directors.

If I could ask incoming board chair Brad Hart to join me up here and help congratulate our outgoing committee chairs and directors.

If you are here and your name is called please join us up here to receive a certificate from United Way. In addition, we are making a small gift in your name to the United Way Endowment Fund. As you may recall, we are trying to raise $5 million as part of our endowment by the end of next year. If you have any questions, I’m sure Lois Buntz or Hilery Livengood would be happy to talk with you.

Rotating or resigning off the board of directors:

  • Kevin Knutson – Past Chair – (Holmes Murphy)
  • Tim Kintner (Bankers Trust)
  • Doug Kopp (Alliant Energy)
  • Mary Ann Osborn (St. Luke’s Hospital)
  • Dick Pilcher (US Bank)
  • Karl Cassell (Horizons)
  • David Pohlman (GreatAmerica Leasing)
  • Barb Gay – Agency Representative (Foundation 2)

Rotating off Board of Trustees

  • Cathy Gullickson (Community Volunteer)

Outgoing committee chairs are:

  • Tocqueville – Kevin & Kathy Knutson
  • Sinclair – James & Barb Klein
  • WLI – Ashley Ernst
  • YLS – Wendy Nielsen

Committee Chairs outgoing

  • Doug Kopp (Alliant Energy)
  • Mary Ann Osborn (St. Luke’s Hospital)
  • Barb Gay – Agency Representative (Foundation 2)
  • Gary Chadick – (Rockwell Collins) – Strategic Planning Committee

Campaign Chairs outgoing

  • Campaign – Marc & Cathy Gullickson


Greg Neumeyer

Let’s look at part of next year’s team…

Joining us for a second term on the  board for 2013 – 2016

  • Katie Mulholland (Linn-Mar School District)
  • Jon Bancks (Morgan Stanley)
  • Dave Benson (Cedar Rapids Community School District)
  • Kyle Decker (Bergan Paulsen)
  • Jim Haddad (Haddad Consulting Services)
  • Brad Hart (Bradley & Riley)
  • Maureen Osako (Informatics)

Please help me welcome our new directors:

  • Jared Hanlin (GreatAmerica)
  • Linda Mattes (Alliant Energy)
  • James Klein (Cedar Rapids Bank & Trust)
  • Brooke Willey (CRST)
  • Dennis Jordan (Cedar Rapids Economic Alliance)
  • LaSheila Yates (City of Cedar Rapids)
  • Pat Deignan ( Bankers Trust)
  • Paula Land (Catherine McAuley Center)


And the new Board Officers FY2014

  • Board Chair:                            Brad Hart
  • Board Chair Elect:                   Katie Mulholland
  • President:                                 Lois Buntz
  • Secretary:                                 Jon Bancks
  • Treasurer:                                Kyle Decker


New Board of Trustees

  • Kevin Knutson (Holmes Murphy)
  •  Nancy Kasparek (US Bank)


Leadership Chairs and Vice Chairs – FY2014

Tocqueville Society

  • Ted & Cathy Townsend (St. Luke’s)

T.M. Sinclair Society

  • Mike & Mollie Gannon (CRST)

William B. Quarton Society

  • Trace Pickering – Chair (The Gazette Company)
  • Kate Beihl – Vice Chair (OPN)

Women’s Leadership Initiative

  • Lisa Henderson (Alliant Energy)

Labor Leadership Giving Society

  • Rick Moyle (Hawkeye Labor Council)

Young Leaders Society

  • Shilo Knapp – Chair (Rockwell Collins)
  • Kari Cooling – Vice Chair (Holmes Murphy)

Committee Chairs – FY2014

Board of Trustees

  • Brad Hart (Bradley & Riley)

Nominations/Board Governance Committee

  • Greg Neumeyer (BankIowa)

Operations Committee

  • Gary Chadick

Planned Giving Committee

  • Greg Neumeyer (BankIowa)

Human Resource Committee

  • Cathy Terukina (The Gazette Company)

Finance and Administration Committee

  • Kyle Decker (Bergan Paulsen)

Audit Committee

  • Laura Walker (Deloitte & Touche LLP)

Community Impact Cabinet

  • Jon Bancks

Education Solutions Team

  • Beth Malicki (KCRG-TV9)

Financial Stability Solutions Team

  • Ed Barrett (Security Coverage)
  • Stuart Haker (True North)

Health Solutions Team

  • Greg Brecht (Cargill)

Public Policy Committee

  • Steve Ovel (Kirkwood Community College)
  • Kay Jackson (Mercy Medical Center)

Education Advisory

  • Katie Mulholland (Linn-Mar Community School District)

Accountability Review Team

  • Jon Bancks (Morgan Stanley)
  • Dick Minette (Community Volunteer)

Agency Executive Advisory Team

  • Paula Land, Catherine McAuley Center


  • John Padget (Cedar Valley United Way)


Brad Hart, 2014 United Way Board of Directors Chairs

I’m looking forward to next year. What a great team..

As you heard today, we are doing a lot of good things together to help our community move forward. But challenges remain…

Let me just give you a few examples:

14,000 households in our community can’t afford basic needs, such as foods, shelter or transportation.

Over 31,000 low-income women can’t afford healthcare services.


Almost 19,000 youth are not prepared for school, work and life.

Also, we are nearing the end of the three-year funding cycle this year. As you may remember, we funded  about 40 agencies three years ago. It’s again time later this year to open this funding cycle. Community agencies once again will be able to submit proposals to be funded in one of our impact areas.

In this next year, with all of you, Campaign Chair Ron Olson (and Flat Ron) we can continue to help everyone in our community!

Let’s improve our community forward together and make it great for current and future generations.

To accomplish our goals, the United Way team and a group of volunteer leaders have worked on the strategic plan for the next 3-5 years. The top-level goals will be shared publicly in the coming weeks.

Thank you for attending today and I’m looking forward to an exciting future for our community.

Thank you to our 2013 event sponsors:

 Bradley & Riley Logo

McGladrey Logo

To view the 2012 event, please click here.


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