Good Saturday, everyone! We had a great start to our 2020/2021 campaign this last week, as we kicked it off with our first radiothon with Neuhoff Media. Tom Barnes, known as Tommy B on D102, did an amazing job with all the interviews and really pulled out great information from each one. I can see why he won Best Radio Personality last year for the Illinois Broadcasters Association’s Small Market Radio.

I want to thank our speakers from beginning to end: 2020/2021 campaign co-chairs Amy Brown, Gardner Peck and Mary Surprenant; past United Way campaign chair Pat O’Shaughnessy; past United Way president Jeanne Mulvaney; United Way Board vice-chair Simphi Lenover; state Rep. Mike Marron; Crosspoint Executive Director Chad Hays; Vermilion County Recorder Dave Stone; Survivor Resource Center Executive Director Marcie Sheridan; Boys & Girls Club Executive Director Rob Gifford.

Also, Community Action of Western Indiana Executive Director Muff Rennick; United Way Board chair Dan Laughner; Danville Mayor Rickey Williams Jr.; City of Danville Human Relations Administrator Sandra Finch; Vermilion County Regional Office of Education Homeless Coordinator Tricia Keith; Curt Towne, owner of Depke Gases and Welding Supplies; Fred Faulstich with Faulstich Printing; Sen. Scott Bennett; Peer Court Executive Director Katie Osterbur; and last, but not least, John Hart, assistant superintendent of elementary schools with District 118.

Although the speakers were volunteers, we also wanted to thank those volunteers who helped us with our booth at the Temple Plaza: Simphi Lenover; the women from CASA of Vermilion County, Liz Irle, Laura Kasper, Taylor Neville and Morgan Patton; the women from Survivor Resource Center, Marcie Sheridan, Tara Wright and Stacey Quick; board members Mark Stutsman and Liya Hussmann Rogers, Katie Osterbur, Michael Miller from REG; and Gail Raney with Rosecrance, Inc.

We enjoyed many great conversations and appreciated the company of many others who stopped by.

We raised $24,092 during this event, which has jumpstarted our campaign. We had several anonymous donors, but others giving toward our radiothon were: American Event Services, Aunt Bea from Sunset Funeral Home, Bill Pickett, C.H. Smith Insurance Agency, Chad Hays, Dale Edwards, Danville Metal Stamping, Dr. Robert Ewbank, DTI Office Solutions, Gibson Teledata, Greg Tissier, Hank’s Transmission, Heartland Properties, Iroquois Federal, O’Brien’s Law, Ryan and Kristin O’Shaughnessy, REG, Inc., RE/MAX Ultimate, Rortvedt Funeral Services, and Wilson’s Auto Service.

This is just the beginning; we obviously have a long way to go, but we are remaining optimistic during these trying times. We hopefully will be announcing a couple of new events that you can participate in soon.

There are always different ways to give to our campaign. Our text to give option, texting WIN2020 to 313131, will be available year-round. That text sends you a link to our donation page on our website. But you can go straight to the website also, www.unitedwayda.com.

We have paper forms still at the office or you can ask your human resource director at your place of employment if you can give through your payroll.

If you want to see what your donation goes to, every United Way partner agency created a video this year to better show you how their program is impacting lives in our community. You can find these videos on YouTube at United Way of Danville Area. Each is only a couple of minutes long but very informative.

I will be writing on each one for the next several weeks and will remind you of how you can view them each time. I hope they inspire you as much as they inspired me.

Please consider a donation this year, no amount is too small, because remember…. United We Win!

Give. Advocate. Volunteer. Live United.

Sherri M. Askren is president of United Way of Danville Area, Inc., 425 N. Gilbert St., Danville, IL 61832. Phone, 442-3512

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