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Another year has come and gone, and that means we just hosted the 15th annual State of the Community event.
State of the Community is an event held every year by UWLC to bring together community members, businesses, nonprofits, government entities and community organizations from all over Larimer County to shed light on the most pressing issues in the community and to celebrate people making a difference.
In case you missed the event or would like to relive some of its brightest moments, here are the top 4 highlights from this year’s State of the Community:
Every year, United Way of Larimer County present this award to an individual or organization that embodies the Live United spirit of working together to solve problems and strengthen our community. This year Colorado State University received the Live United Community Collaboration Award. As a land grant university, it’s not surprising that CSU is highly engaged with the local community. From the Center for Collaborative Conservation that engages stakeholders in Africa to the Center for Public Deliberation that hosts rich conversations about issues critical to our community, the effects of CSU’s reach are widespread and profound. CSU President, Tony Frank, accepted the award on behalf of CSU.
"The words on our seal are teaching, research, service and extension, and if these ideas do not come together in collaboration, we are not realizing our potential." – Tony Frank
United Way has evolved with our community and moved from transactional giving to working in collaborative ways to create transformational change using a model called Collective Impact.
Facilitator, Carrie Bennett, and professional consultant, Chris Imsland, work closely with United Way of Larimer County’s collaborative groups. At the event, they talked about Collective Impact, collaborative groups, and the state of our community in Larimer County.
In Larimer County today 37% of families with kids under five are living in poverty. That’s 20,000 families who are struggling to make ends meet in Larimer County.
UWLC’s collaborative groups Be Ready, Kids on Track, Transitions to Independence, and Working Families Thrive are all working hard to support the community’s needs and reach UWLC’s bold goal of reducing poverty by 50% in Larimer County by 2025.
At the event, Chris and Carrie used a toy metaphor to explain how the collaborative groups are working together to better the community and what exactly UWLC’s role is in Collective Impact. The ring stacked toy represents the collaborative groups and resources in our community. They described the base of the toy as the community members and the pole of the toy is UWLC. UWLC is the support to the collaborative groups without that pole the rings would be scattered. Each ring represents a resource or collaborative group. UWLC as the pole is the support to these groups and help them collectively collaborate to meet the needs of the community members.
The annual campaign video was also premiered at this event. Watch below to see the full video.
This year UWLC presented a Lifetime Impact Award given to longtime CEO Gordan Thibedeau for dedicating his career to service and the betterment of our community. In his acceptance speech, Thibedeau talked of his time in the army and how he severed the nation. As President and CEO he talked about how he translated that service to nation into the community. Thibedeau moved to Fort Collins Colorado so his wife could attended CSU. Retired from the military, he said he got bored of the adventures in Colorado and got involved in the community instead, by volunteering to be a senior partner with Partners of Larimer County. He became President and CEO of United Way of Larimer County in 1998 One of his proudest accomplishments was helping the community build the Sister Mary Alice Murphy Center for Hope. The community came together and was able to meet their objectives in creating the center.
“It was not that I achieved that, it’s that we achieved it.” – Gordan Thibedeau
Gordan Thibedeau, President and CEO of United Way of Larimer County, announced his successor at the event. After a nationwide search process UWLC’s Board of Directors selected Annie Davies as the next President and CEO. Davies will succeed Gordan Thibedeau, following a near 20-year tenure. Paul Mueller, Board Chair, stated “Annie comes to us with a top-notch business approach and an extensive nonprofit background. This mix of cross-sector experience, combined with her deep passion for strengthening communities makes her uniquely qualified to step in and build on Thibedeau’s legacy from the past two decades.” UWLC announced Annie Davies as the new President and CEO in a press release the day after the event.
This year’s State of the Community was a memorable event. Thank you to all our sponsors for continuing to support us and our collaborative groups. We are working together to ensure that every child in Larimer County has the opportunity to reach their full potential and that all local families can succeed in school, work, and life.
Experience the event in photos: Click here for our Facebook photo album from the event!
Copyright 2015 United Way of Larimer County