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United Way of Lake County Celebrates Successful Fundraising Campaign

The local chapter of the United Way received $105,846 more in donations this campaign year than it did last year

The mentioned a lot of important numbers at its annual meeting and awards breakfast Thursday morning at .

There was

  • $3,671,388: That's the amount donated to the charity .
  • $105,846: That's how much more they raised than during the 2010-2011 fundraising campaign. That's a 3 percent increase and the second largest bump from year to year in the past 11 years.
  • 12: That's how many times out of the last 13 years they've raised more than the previous year. But even during that decade-plus win streak, they have only collected $100,000 more than the previous year -- as they did this year -- three times.

But the most important number mentioned during the breakfast was two-thirds. That's how many Lake County residents use a service that receives funding from the local chapter of the United Way.

Greg Lieb, the incoming UWLC Board Chair for this year, said that more than 140,000 people benefitted from UWLC funding.

"That's two out of every three of us," he said.

Outgoing UWLC Board Chair Steven Roszczyk said that number will likely continue to increase so the support must grow with it.

"While we can certainly be proud of what we've accomplished, the truth is our neighbors' needs continue to grow," Roszczyk said.

Other campaign highlights include:

  • Employees from four companies -- Lubrizol, Eaton, First Energy, Avery Dennison -- contributed more than $100,000 each.
  • Special events throughout Lake County raised a record high $100,000.
  • A Lake County family, who wishes to remain anonymous, raised $30,000 for food and a 5-year dollar pledge for needy families.

The fundraising campaign was chaired by Mentor Schools Superintendent Jacqueline Hoynes and Kevin Lynch of AT&T. The co-chairs of this year's upcoming fundraising campaign will be Dave Wiles of CT Consultants and Lisa Nelson of Right Tracks.

The UWLC also handed out two of its annual awards during the breakfast.

Roszczyk received the . He has been a UWLC volunteer since co-chairing the 2005 campaign when the original chair of that campaign had to back out following a job transfer. After he successfully led that year's campaign, Roszczyk joined the United Way of Lake County Board of Trustees.

Roszczyk has served as the board's first and second vice chair and for the past 18 months, he served as the board chair.

"Today's campaign progress is due, in no small way to Steve's contributions," said United Way of Lake County's President Deborah Foley. "The contributions of Steve cannot be overstated. He truly became the lighthouse, steering the organization to new heights and success during a most difficult time."

Meanwhile, Painesville City Manager Rita McMahon received the Gus Gehring Award.

She has been a member of the Board of Directors for the past 10 years and was the first chair of one of the charity's Solutions Panels.

Dr. Steven Baum -- the winner of last year's Gus Gehring award -- introduced McMahon during the breakfast.

"To be included in the same breath as Gus is indeed an honor," Baum said. "And the person who won it this year definitely deserves that honor."

A video of the leading a few cheers at the breakfast is attached to this story.

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