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2010, ISSUE II

The Franklin County EITC Coalition celebrates fourth year of helping Families Keep the Money They Earn The Coalition’s Free Tax Preparation Services Help People Achieve and Maintain Financial Stability


In 2010, Franklin County EITC Coalition volunteers once again helped hardworking families prepare and file their taxes – bringing millions of dollars back to central Ohio. Now in its fourth Franklin County EITC Coalition year of operation, the all-volunteer coalition provided free tax preparation for over 3,912 individuals and families. That represents over $5 million in returns and $978,000 that recipients saved in tax preparation and anticipation loan fees. earn it. keep it. save it.

One key way the Coalition has increased awareness is by conducting an annual outreach campaign through radio spots, bus advertising, and posters that inform people of the service and direct them to call Coalition partner HandsOn Central Ohio at 211 for more information.

“The success of the Coalition is a great example of how dedicated volunteers can make a concrete difference in people’s lives,” said Kelli Arthur Hykes, chair of the Coalition’s Core Hosting Group. “The money we help people receive lets them not only meet their basic needs, but build assets for a financially stable future.” United Way of Central Ohio is one of the founding members of the Coalition, which is made up of over 30 partners. The free tax preparation provided by the coalition is a key strategy in achieving United Way’s ten-year Bold Goal in the area of financial stability of reducing by 20% the number of households in Franklin County living below an income level that allows them to meet basic needs. “Before the Coalition was formed there were many local groups offering free tax preparation, but by working together we were able to coordinate our efforts and reach more people,” said Matt Kosanovich, Senior Impact Director at United Way of Central Ohio, who has coordinated the Coalition’s work for the past three years.

Coalition volunteers providing free tax preparation for clients at South Side Settlement House.

EITC Coalition in action: central community house

LaShawn Capito

As Community Services Director at Central Community House, LaShawn Capito helps people get important services every day, and as a volunteer site coordinator for the Franklin County EITC Coalition she helps them keep the money they earn. She says the number of people who have their taxes done at Central Community House has grown as more people find out about the

service. Last year, about 230 people were served and in 2010 that grew to more than 300. LaShawn says that many people who come to have their taxes done end up getting connected to other vital services as well. One client she helped received a refund of over $12,000, which included the $8,000 first-time homebuyer credit. “She was thrilled,” said LaShawn.

President’s Update I look forward to the Celebration of Excellence every year. It is a gathering that brings hundreds of members of the United Way of Central Ohio family together, and gives me an opportunity to express my heartfelt thanks for everything our many corporate partners and member agencies do during our annual campaign. For me, there is no other event like it. There is an energy in the room that comes from having so many people who have given so much of themselves to make our community better. I take that energy with me from our celebration and draw upon it throughout the year. Sometimes when a news article or a statistic reminds me of how much work we have yet to accomplish to tackle the many issues that face us, I think about the people gathered at the Celebration of Excellence and it renews me.

The many companies represented at the Celebration of Excellence understand that through supporting United Way they can be catalysts for real and lasting change. Now, we have to get the word out to others who want to help, but don’t know about the power of United Way’s work. We have to activate the enthusiasm of each member of our United Way family – each of you – to tell your friends and neighbors about how they can make a difference. Each time someone makes a new gift; each time a new workplace campaign is launched; our capacity to improve lives increases, and the connections between caring people in our community grows and strengthens. This year we filled the ballroom at the new Ohio Union with a large group of those caring people, but when we reach the true potential of our movement our Celebration of Excellence will fill the Schottenstein Center. Sincerely,

It renews me because I know that we are all part of a movement that has the tremendous potential to effectively address our issues and not just step forward, but leap forward. Central Ohio is clearly on the move. Our community is growing, building, innovating. And as we begin to emerge from the recession, I feel a growing sense of hope about our future. The same business and community leaders who are creating innovation and growing our local economy recognize that in order to have a strong community we must have strong people. That’s why they support United Way. They realize no other organization is in a better position to bring people together to advance the common good.


a Fan!

Janet E. Jackson President and CEO United Way of Central Ohio

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Just search for “United Way of Central Ohio” on Facebook and @UWCO on Twitter and be the first to know the latest news.



United Way WELCOMES NEW BOARD MEMBERS The United Way of Central Ohio Board of Trustees thanked retiring board members John Bickley, Karen Days, Pat Hatler, Msgr. Joseph Hendricks and Becky Westerfelt for their years of service and welcomed ten new members this spring. Rocco Evangelista is president of National Association of Letter Carriers, Buckeye Branch 78. He is a member of the Central Ohio Labor Council Executive Council, AFL-CIO, has served as co-chairperson of Operation Feed, and is chair of the Letter Carriers’ “One New Toy” drive which assists many nonprofits during the holiday season. Audrey G. Tuckerman is

First Vice President of Investments at Merrill Lynch and a member of the Merrill Lynch Chairman’s Council. She is past chair of the the YWCA Board of Trustees and serves on the boards of many local charitable organizations as well as the Center for Child and Family Advocacy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital.

Darrell Gammell is Business Agent for

Plumber & Pipefitters Local 189. He serves as Executive Board Member for the Central Ohio AFL-CIO, Vice Chairman of the Board of Commissioners of the Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority, trustee of Building & Construction Trades Council, and is on the Board of Directors of the Columbus and Franklin County Affordable Housing Trust.

Denise M. Robinson is President and

CEO of Alvis House which serves more than 3,000 individuals and families who have been affected by incarceration. Denise holds several leadership positions in organizations focused on corrections and re-entry, including Commissioner for the Commission on Accreditation for Corrections.

Ken Peters is the General Manager for the North American Marketing Organization at Mettler Toledo and has been with the company since 1976. Peters has a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Polytechnic Institute of New York and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of Hartford. He has served on several United Way Campaign Cabinets.


Linda Stern Kass is a community volunteer

who has advocated for education, the arts and early childhood development. She has led many civic and community organizations over the past two decades in central Ohio. She founded Champion of Children, serves as Board Chairman of The Bexley Education Foundation, and is a Board Trustee of

Mark Thompson is Huntington National Bank’s Director of Strategy and Business Segment Performance. He is a graduate of Boston College where he earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting and computer science and a master’s degree in finance. He served on the boards of The Reinvestment Fund and the Philadelphia Community College Foundation in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Michelle Heritage Ward is Executive Director of Community Shelter Board. Ward is the Vice Chair of United Way’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee, Vice Chair of the Ohio Council Board of Trustees, and Chair of United Way’s Pride Council. She is a member of the GroundWork group Advisory Board, the Columbus Metropolitan Club, and Women for Economic and Leadership Development (WELD). Mike Lex is Senior Vice President of Sales for Nationwide. He is a graduate of the University of Iowa with a bachelor’s degree in finance and has earned the Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter designation. He chairs United Way’s Emergency Assistance Results Committee. Bob Restrepo is Chairman, CEO, and

President of the State Auto Insurance Companies. He serves on several industry and community boards including the Property Casualty Insurance Association of America, Insurance Information Institute, Columbus Chamber of Commerce, Columbus College of Art & Design, and Nuclear Electric Insurance Limited.


United Way Celebrates Excellent Organizations Grange Wins Highest Honor; New Awards Introduced On April 19th, United Way of Central Ohio recognized six organizations who exemplified excellence in campaign efforts at our Celebration of Excellence held at the new Ohio Union at The Ohio State University. Grange Insurance Companies received the highest honor, The Award of Excellence, which recognizes overall achievement in corporate and volunteer philanthropic efforts. Award judges found that Grange excels in all aspects of their campaign including strategic performance, leadership giving, and employee education and volunteerism. This is the sixth year that The Award of Excellence has been presented. Previous winners are American Electric Power (AEP) / IBEW Local 1466, Nationwide, UPS, Deloitte & Touche and Bruner Corporation.

The five other awards recognize accomplishments in specific areas: Employee Volunteerism AEP-IBEW Local 1466 Employee Education Bruner Corporation Leadership Giving Alliance Data Systems Strategic Performance Porter Wright Morris & Arthur LLP Best First-Time Campaign Ologie The awards were presented by Michael Morris, Chairman, President and CEO, AEP, who hosted the event, and Ann Pizzuti, immediate past chair, United Way of Central Ohio Board of Trustees.

Rhonda Johnson, president of the Columbus Education Association and a United Way of Central Ohio Board Member, announced new awards, the Recognition of Excellence in Community Impact, which recognizes programs for excellence in supporting the achievement of United Way of Central Ohio’s Bold Goals through collaboration and best practices. She recognized the eleven agencies that were part of the 2009 Workforce Development Group that pioneered methods to help United Way collect and use data in meaningful ways. Through the efforts of these agencies, United Way has been able to more clearly determine the most effective strategies for helping people get jobs. The awardwinning agencies are: Alvis House Columbus Works Columbus Urban League Godman Guild Goodwill Columbus Jewish Family Services New Directions Career Center The Neighborhood House The Salvation Army United Cerebral Palsy of Central Ohio Vision and Vocational Services The Ready to Read Corps program of the Columbus Metropolitan Library also received the Recognition of Excellence. This innovative outreach effort goes to gathering places in neighborhoods like settlement houses and food pantries and conducts workshops that teach parents and caregivers effective methods to promote reading with their children. Janet Jackson also announced that the 2009 United Way of Central Ohio annual campaign raised $43.8 million to fund programs and initiatives in the areas of education, income, health and home. Michael Morris thanked Labor Co-chair Rocco Evangelista, president of the National Association of Letter Carriers, Number 78, and Randy Sleeper, president and CEO of Bruner Corporation who served as Leading Edge Chair. Leading Edge is an effort focused on increasing the number of organizations that conduct new United Way of Central Ohio workplace campaigns.



Community Impact Award of Excellence – Grange Insurance (from left) Rob Rissmeyer, Bob James, John DeLucia, Margaret Wildi, Mimi McGinty, Patti Eshman and Mark Russell

Employee Volunteerism – AEP-IBEW Local 1466 (from left) Barry Schumman, Charles Tippie, Michael Morris, Michele Chavalia, Carl English and Joseph Hamrock

Employee Education – Bruner Corporation (from left) Autumn Owdom, Micah Alexander, Mick Newman, Mike Stemen, Shirley Fradette, Mark Wenger, Kristi Laurent, Rocky Carr and Randy Sleeper

Leadership Giving – Alliance Data Systems (from left) Amanda Streeter, Brandy Duchesne, Amy Arroyo, Stacey Smith, Bob Barnes, Sarah Booth, and Chris Brewer

Strategic Performance – Porter Wright Morris & Arthur LLP (from left) Polly Harris, David Zimmerman, Joyce Edelman, Amy Williams, Jeremy Siegfried, Linda Morris and Rich Terapak

Best First-Time Campaign – Ologie (from left) Erin Herl, Sarah Vida Corna, Lindsay Baker and Wendi Malick





United Way of Central Ohio’s Leadership Giving groups offer the opportunity for donors to learn more about how their contributions are helping improve lives in central Ohio, develop meaningful service projects and network with fellow donors.

Darci Congrove Honored with the Robert S. Crane Jr. Young Philanthropist Award at the Annual YLG Recognition Event

On March 2nd, Les and Abigail Wexner once again welcomed members and guests of the Young Leadership Group to their home for the group’s annual recognition event. Janet Jackson thanked YLG co-chairs Dennis Duchene, John Brown and Chad Readler for their leadership over the campaign year, and she presented the Robert S. Crane Jr. Young Philanthropist Award to Darci Congrove, Managing Director of GBQ Partners, Columbus’ largest local public accounting firm. Darci has been a member of YLG for more than 10 years, co-chaired the YLG campaign in 2004, and is a founding member of the Women’s Leadership Council. She is a 2003 graduate of Leadership Columbus, was recognized on the Business First Forty Under 40 list in 2002, and was named as one of the twelve Women You Should Know in

2010 by Women for Economic and Leadership Development. The event’s guest speaker was Andrew Ross Sorkin, New York Times chief mergers and acquisitions reporter and columnist, and best-selling author of the book Too Big to Fail.

Robert S. Crane Young Philanthropist Award receipient Darci Congrove (left), and Janet Jackson (right)

Key Club Welcomes New Co-Chairs

Aaron and Carla Granger have become new co-chairs for the Key Club’s 2010 campaign. Aaron is an attorney with Schottenstein Zox and Dunn, and Carla is Director of Medical Education at The Ohio State University Medical Center. Both are active community volunteers and have been Key Club members since 2000.


2010 Key Club co-chairs, Aaron and Carla Granger

YLG Premier Launches On April 1st, YLG launched new giving levels that will give more people the opportunity to join the YLG family. All current members of YLG automatically became members of YLG Premier. New members can join at the Premier level for an annual gift of $2,500, or at the YLG level for an annual gift of as little as $1,200.

Deanna Stewart joins United way to lead resource development On May 10th, Deanna Stewart joined the staff of United Way of Central Ohio as Senior Vice President of Resource Development. She has an extensive background in marketing and development, and most recently was Assistant Vice President of Corporate and Foundation Relations at The Ohio State University. Deanna received a bachelor’s degree in Management from Longwood University and an MBA in Business Marketing from George Washington University. She is a founding member of United Way’s Women’s Leadership Council; chair of the External Advisory Committee for Women for Economic and Leadership Development (WELD); and serves on the YWCA Women of Achievement Sponsorship Committee.



Columbus Early Learning Centers: Early Childhood Education Working with 300 kids ranging in ages from infancy to 5 years old, the Early Childhood Education program run by the Columbus Early Learning Centers helps young children develop the cognitive, physical, social and emotional skills they need for educational success. By giving these children age-appropriate growth and development opportunities, they can develop a love for learning at an early age before stepping into the classroom. Parents are encouraged to be involved in the program. All children are assessed when they first start the program and their progress is monitored in six month intervals thereafter.

American Red Cross of Greater Columbus: Community Transportation Program The American Red Cross of Greater Columbus’ Community Transportation Program provides low-income seniors and disabled individuals with transportation to medical care and other health and wellness activities. This program gives clients the chance to carry out independent lives at home and reduces the barrier to obtaining health care by transporting them to their crucial appointments. Last year this program made 18,856 one-way trips to medical appointments. Partners in this program include: Senior Options, Columbus Cancer Center, Franklin County Senior Options, Title III (Central Ohio Area Agency on Aging (COAAA), Forehope, and the Arthritis Foundation.




Program Spotlight


United Way

United Way of Central Ohio funds 166 programs at 78 member agencies. Each of these programs has gone through a rigorous review process by experienced and diverse groups of volunteers to ensure only the most effective ones are funded. Each program meets a community need as part of our interconnected work in the areas of Education, Income, Health and Home.

Lutheran Social Services: Choice Food Pantries Lutheran Social Services Choice Food Pantries operates two pantries in Franklin County that distributed 2.5 million pounds of food to the hungry during their fiscal year ending in June 2008. This represents nearly 1 million nutritionally balance meals. During that year, twenty-five percent of all Franklin County hunger calls were referred to Lutheran Social Services through FirstLink (now HandsOn Central Ohio). Choice Food Pantries have become a model for other pantries to follow with an innovative high-volume inventory and a strong volunteer program helping to keep costs low.

Alvis House: Re-entry Program Helping Build Vibrant Neighborhoods Alvis House helps ex-offenders become productive community members by providing services like residential halfway homes, job readiness training and placement assistance. Alvis House serves more than 3,000 people each year in Franklin County, and 85% of their clients have been successful for the past nine years. Program participants have a recidivism rate of less than 12% one year after completing the program. By helping ex-offenders reconnect with their communities, this program helps make our neighborhoods safer places to live.


Non-Profit Org U.S. Postage Paid Permit No. 99 Columbus, OH 360 South Third Street Columbus, Ohio 43215-5485

LIVING UNITED Carl English Leads 2010 Campaign Carl English, Chief Operating Officer of American Electric Power is United Way of Central Ohio’s 2010 General Campaign Chair. His many community volunteer roles include board chair of Directions for Youth & Families, and the New Albany Community Foundation. He also serves on the boards of CompeteColumbus, the Columbus Association for the Performing Arts, the Wexner Center for the Arts Foundation, and the Columbus Symphony. Charles Tippie, President and Business Manager of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1466, will serve as Labor Co-Chair.

Carl English

Charles Tippie

2010 General Campaign Chair

2010 Labor Co-Chair

LIVING UNITED Newsletter 2010 Issue II  

The quarterly newsletter from United Way of Central Ohio, LIVING UNITED.