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This I Believe. What a great NPR series. Have you ever tried to articulate in three to five minutes the core beliefs that guide your daily life? When alone with extended windshield time, I often attempt. It is not as easy as you might think! Analyzing my actions and reactions was a great way to ask myself whether I truly believe in something. I concluded that I believe in the power of education.
It started early, the result of my parents’ influence. I recall clearly when, in about third grade, a TV ad for the United Negro College Fund grabbed my full attention. Wait - someone might not get to go to college even if he or she really, really wants to? Hmm. I picked up the phone, called that 1-800 number, and donated $20. When my mom got home, I had to ask her for the $20, which led to an eye-opening conversation. In the decades since, I have been further enlightened as to the barriers to education that many face.
I committed to the United Way of Larimer County Board of Directors after a short meeting with former President and CEO, Gordan Thibedeau. He explained that United Way was using a collaborative model to target the areas of education, income and health to measurably reduce poverty in Larimer County. Gordan’s enthusiasm and optimism was contagious. I saw power in focus, alignment and synergy. How exciting to be at the table with others to discuss and debate the best path to reducing poverty in our community and then clearing a path over time together. A good education might help start a lifelong love of learning. Every child and adult needs strong literacy skills, access to technology and the internet, and support and resources for high school, a GED, vocational training, or a two or four year college degree. Education is a broad concept and an incredibly valuable tool to reducing poverty and creating financial security.
Paul Mueller recently passed the United Way Board Chair’s gavel to me, which means that, for the next 24 months, I get to call the United Way Board Meetings to order. Paul set a very high bar as Chair. He embodies giving, advocacy, volunteering and “Living United.” We are grateful Paul stated his intent to serve on the United Way Board until he is term limited and then to continue his many contributions thereafter. Thank you, Paul!
During my tenure, I look forward to working closely with United Way of Larimer County’s new President and CEO, Annie Davies. In her short eleven months at United Way, she has demonstrated that her passion, dedication and energy are limitless. I hope to build on the momentum generated by the hard working United Way staff, the dedicated members of the nonprofit collaborative groups, the dynamic committee members and volunteers, the generous donors, and the engaged Board. Please support us in all ways you are able! Together, we will make a positive impact in the areas of Youth and Education, Financial Stability, Community Engagement, and Non-Profit Excellence. United, we strengthen our community.
Copyright 2015 United Way of Larimer County