United Way 2009-2010 Campaign Goal set at $2.325 Million

By Mary Schenkel, Society EditorINDIAN RIVER COUNTY — With football cheers and enthusiasm, a room full of United Way supporters, volunteers and agency partners got the ball rolling for the 2009-2010 Campaign at a Kickoff Celebration Wednesday evening at the IRSC Richardson Center.

In his opening remarks, United Way of Indian River County board chairman Michael Kmetz introduced the event hosts, elite sponsors, board members and 31 partner agencies; and gave voice to an overall optimistic campaign mission.  “Time and time again, this community has shown its resolve, has met the challenges facing us, and has come through.  You, our volunteers, are the ones who lead that charge.” See photos at end of article.

Kmetz also confidently donned his Yankee baseball cap; if the campaign does as well as his favorite team the fundraising goal is assured!

Michael Kint, United Way CEO recognized the numerous Loyal Contributors, those who have made a 10 year commitment or longer to the United Way.  Keeping with the theme of the evening, Kint remarked, “This year, as Michael said, it is about optimism, it’s about not only changing people’s lives, making things just a little easier, but about rebuilding our community, from the foundation up.”

The four gentlemen who are this year’s campaign co-chairs, Andy Beindorf, Karl Steene, Chris Beiber and Daniel Fourmont were cheered in by members of the Indian River County Recreation Department’s Cheerleaders clapping, “Its time to Rock; Its time to Roll; Live United; Make the Goal!

Each of the four co-chairs took a turn at the microphone, beginning with Andy Beindorf who introduced the Torchbearer Businesses that set the standard for giving early in the campaign by pledging to run employee giving campaigns and providing a corporate gift that will yield a minimum of $12,000.

Daniel Fourmont presented the Campaign Cabinet, those who are the brains of the behind the scenes planning, and Chris Bieber introduced the Loaned Executives, who venture out into the community to lead workplace campaigns.

Before giving the fundraising goal, Karl Steene announced that early Torchbearer campaigns have already started and to date have contributed 23.6% of the goal. Current economic difficulties were taken into consideration when establishing the goal, which has been set at $2,325,000, just slightly higher than the $2,321,254 raised last year.

“It is more important than ever that we remain strong,” urged Kint. “There is no doubt that requests for basic needs are on the rise.”  {igallery 76}

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