United Way celebrates launch of Community Campaign

From left, Stuart Adelberg, Virginia Meyer, Brook Urban, campaign co-chair, and First Selectman Peter Tesei all marked the beginning of the capital campaign.

From left, Stuart Adelberg, Virginia Meyer, Brook Urban, campaign co-chair, and First Selectman Peter Tesei all marked the beginning of the capital campaign.

The Greenwich United Way 2014-15 Community Campaign got its official start Thursday, Sept. 18, with First Selectman Peter Tesei declaring “Greenwich would not be the community it is if it weren’t for our United Way.”

Delivering a proclamation on the steps of Town Hall to mark the organization’s 80th fund-raising year, he said, “The Greenwich United Way is the heart of the community, working with and for the town to ensure local needs are met.”

Mr. Tesei noted that the United Way, in the midst of its milestone 80th year of identifying and meeting the health and human service needs of the community, raises and distributes more dollars for essential local services each year than any other non-governmental source.

Board Chair Virginia Meyer, the board directors, and representatives of Community Centers Inc., Family Centers, the Greenwich YWCA, the Boys & Girls Club, Kids in Crisis, Neighbor to Neighbor, YMCA, Abilis, and other United Way partner agencies heard President Stuart Adelberg recall the United Way’s beginnings as the Community Chest and Council.

He described it as “the promise of a community coming together as family to help our most vulnerable residents, a promise that is as compelling today as it was 80 years ago.”

The 2014-15 overall campaign co-chairs are Brook and Michael Urban. Ms. Urban announced that thousands of solicitations have been delivered or are en route to individuals and businesses and that early responses are encouraging. Ms. Urban is a past president of the Junior League of Greenwich and executive director of the Greenwich chapter of the American Red Cross.

Dr. Urban is a prominent anesthesiologist affiliated with the New York Hospital for Special Surgery and a member of the board of United Way partner agency Liberation Programs. The Urbans say they have gathered a team of “committed local volunteers” who will each lead a specific sector of the communitywide campaign. The team includes Debra McLaughlin, Traci Fiore, Jamie Tyndall, Emily Sternberg, Greenwich Social Services Commissioner Dr. Alan Barry, and Town Clerk Carmella Budkins.

To make a secure online contribution to the communitywide campaign or to take part in the United Way’s Oktoberfest, the first special fund-raising event of the year, set for Oct. 24 at the Loading Dock in Stamford, go to Unitedway-greenwich.org.

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