United Way Announces Record Fundraising Year
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The United Way of Rutherford and Cannon Counties announced today that $2,955,799.40 was secured in pledges during the 2011 fundraising campaign - a record for the local non-profit, whose previous highest fundraising campaign resulted in pledges of $2.734 million in 2009.

The announcement was made at the annual Community Celebration, which recognized the achievements of United Way corporate partners and volunteers for the 2011 year. The event was sponsored by Regions Bank, Nissan, Publix, Middle Tennessee Medical Center, Embassy Suites and Ben and Janice McCloud of Recognition Concepts.

Individuals recognized during the Community Celebration included this year’s Loaned Executives, which are employees from various companies that are loaned to United Way for assistance during the fundraising campaign while the employer continues to pay salary and expenses. The 2011 Loaned Executives were:

Part-Time Loaned Executives

Corey Cato, General Mills

Erin Cayll, Murfreesboro Medical Clinic

Kirk Garrett, Regions Bank

Travis Lampley, McCarter, Catron and East, PLLC

Sandra Mason, US Bank

Crystal McPherson, SunTrust Bank

Courtney Weaver, General Mills

Full-Time Loaned Executives

Josh Charles, Publix

Debbie Coleman, State Farm

Craig Hamby, State Farm

Media partners, recognized for their contributions in marketing and communications pertaining to United Way over the past year, included:

Cannon Courier

WBRY Radio

The Daily News Journal

The Murfreesboro Post

WGNS Radio

Hob Nob

VIP Magazine

Murfreesboro Magazine

The top ten campaigns in order of total funds raised were also announced during the event, which included:

10. City of Murfreesboro - $35,449.00

9. Heritage Farms Dairy, Inc. - $42,026.00

8. Bridgestone LaVergne Plant and the Bridgestone Americas Trust Fund - $67,025.00

7. Middle Tennessee State University - $81,578.00

6. State Farm Insurance Company - $126,245.00

5. Nissan North America, Inc. - $140,494.00

4. Rutherford County Government and Schools - $190,698.00

3. Yates Services - $205,220.00

2. Publix Super Markets & Publix Super Markets Charities - $274,684.00

1. General Mills - $671,325.00

United Way also recognized the best overall campaigns in each category, which were determined on various factors such as percentage increase in employee giving, percentage increase in participation, volunteering with United Way, and conducting special events to benefit United Way. Those campaigns were:

Best Health Services Campaign

Middle Tennessee Medical Center

Best Industry Campaign

Thompson Services, Inc.

Best Non-Profit Agency Campaign

Boys & Girls Club of Rutherford County

Best Professionals Campaign

First Tennessee Bank

Best Retail Campaign

Publix Supermarkets & Publix Supermarkets Charities

Best Major Firms Campaign

General Mills

Best Public Service Campaign

City of LaVergne

Best New Campaign

MAHLE Filter Systems North America, Inc.

Most Improved Campaign

Yates Services

Best Special Event

Rutherford County Government and Schools - Rutherford's Got Talent

Most Creative Campaign

MAHLE Filter Systems North America, Inc.

The school awards were as follows:

Best Elementary School Campaign

Wilson Elementary

Best Middle School Campaign

Rockvale Middle School

Best High School Campaign

Blackman High School

Best Overall School Campaign

Blackman High School

Additional individuals recognized during the Community Celebration were the Campaign Cabinet, which plays a key role in the overall planning and implementation of the United Way campaign. Tracy Toy served as this year’s campaign chair, and Campaign Cabinet members included:

Terry Cunningham

Kenny Edwards

James Evans

Phil Holt

John Hood

Faye Knox

Ryan Moore

Charlie Myatt

Joey Monteleone

Pat Murphy

Bryan Nale

Dr. Liz Rhea

Michelle Russell

Steve Sax

Jim Thompson

The Best Overall Campaign award recipient was General Mills. The local operation increased their overall employee gift by more than 15%, increased their overall campaign total by almost 15%, had a 7% increase in leadership donors, an increase of 23% in leadership donor dollars, a 27% increase in average gift, and a 25% increase in employee per capita.  General Mills also provided 25 volunteers for United Way’s 2011 Day of Action, and provided two Loaned Executives for the 2011 fundraising campaign.

Following the Community Celebration, United Way will host its third annual 3 Point Play meet and greet with the MTSU Lady Raiders on February 28 from 6:30 PM – 7:30 PM at Toot’s at 860 NW Broad Street. A silent auction will be held to benefit United Way.

For more information, visit www.uwrutherford.org.

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