IBJOpinion

MORRIS: Give and volunteer to Live United

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

MorrisMany people in our community, state, country and around the globe need our help. The numbers are staggering. I’m proud to live in an area where people who can help usually do. They are generous with their time and money. Giving and volunteerism are alive and well here in central Indiana despite tough economic times.

We’re a generous community, but to be honest we’ve been relying on a crutch that makes our generosity look even better than it is. That crutch is Eli Lilly and Co., which last year accounted for 25 percent of total giving to United Way of Central Indiana. Lilly stands far above the crowd when it comes to United Way giving.

Last November, Lilly President and CEO John Lechleiter presented a $12 million check to United Way that represented the contributions of Lilly’s U.S. employees and retirees and included a matching amount from the Lilly Foundation. Of the $12 million, approximately $9.7 million went to our local United Way. I know Lilly’s goal this year is to duplicate that level of giving, which will be a tall order considering a reduced work force.

While Lilly tries to match or pass last year, the rest of us can bring down Lilly’s percentage of the total by raising the bar.

Last year, in tough economic times, United Way’s contributions totaled more than $38.8 million—$50,000 more than in 2008. This amazing effort was led by campaign chairman Gino Santini, Lilly’s senior vice president of corporate strategy and business development. Outstanding board chairman leadership was provided by Vince Caponi, CEO of St. Vincent Health.

The kickoff for United Way’s 2010 annual campaign is just around the corner. In fact, pacesetter companies, those companies getting an early start and setting the pace for the general campaign, are already in gear.

Don Knebel, a partner at Barnes & Thornburg law firm, is this year’s United Way campaign chairman. Don has been with the firm since 1974 and has been an active community leader and volunteer. It is appropriate that Don lead this year’s effort because Barnes & Thornburg has conducted what United Way calls a breakthrough campaign the last five years. A breakthrough campaign is one in which contributions increase 30 percent or exceed the previous year by at least $30,000.

I know Don has an aggressive campaign goal to announce at the Colts Go Blue for United Way Day, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sept. 10 on Monument Circle. The Colts will have some exciting things to offer. For example, if you text a donation of at least $10, you’ll be entered in a drawing for Colts tickets or memorabilia. Colts cheerleaders will be there. It sounds like the place to be.

A great way to get involved and volunteer locally is United Way’s Day of Caring. This annual event takes place in a few weeks, Aug. 27-28. It’s not too late to sign up. The Day of Caring program is an easy and fun way to participate with family, friends or co-workers in hands-on volunteering projects throughout central Indiana. You can get more information and register for a volunteer opportunity at UWCI.org.

As a board member, I can attest to the fact that United Way makes a difference in people’s lives every day. I can also tell you with certainty that we are fortunate to have such a strong local chapter under the skillful leadership of President and CEO Ellen Annala. She has been at the helm since 1998. During her tenure, much has been accomplished with the help of a dedicated staff, volunteers and community leaders, yet there always seems to be a pipeline of projects and needs to be met. And that takes money.

Good luck to Don Knebel and new board Chairman David Resnick, managing partner of Katz Sapper & Miller, with achieving this year’s campaign goal. They can do that only with your help.

When you Live United, you give hope to individuals and families in need throughout our region. And you make it possible for United Way to address today’s needs and reduce tomorrow’s, creating a better future for our entire community.

Please give generously of your time and money. Please give to the United Way.•

__________

Morris is publisher of IBJ. His column appears every other week. To comment on this column, send e-mail to gmorris@ibj.com.

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. I am a Lyft driver who is a licensed CDL professional driver. ALL Lyft drivers take pride in providing quality service to the Indianapolis and surrounding areas, and we take the safety of our passengers and the public seriously.(passengers are required to put seat belts on when they get in our cars) We do go through background checks, driving records are checked as are the personal cars we drive, (these are OUR private cars we use) Unlike taxi cabs and their drivers Lyft (and yes Uber) provide passengers with a clean car inside and out, a friendly and courteous driver, and who is dressed appropriately and is groomed appropriately. I go so far as to offer mints, candy and/or small bottle of water to the my customers. It's a mutual respect between driver and passenger. With Best Regards

  2. to be the big fish in the little pond of IRL midwest racin' when yer up against Racin' Gardner

  3. In the first sentance "As a resident of one of these new Carmel Apartments the issue the local governments need to discuss are build quality & price." need a way to edit

  4. As a resident of one of these new Carmel Apartments the issue the local governments need to discuss is build quality & price. First none of these places is worth $1100 for a one bedroom. Downtown Carmel or Keystone at the Crossing in Indy. It doesn't matter. All require you to get in your car to get just about anywhere you need to go. I'm in one of the Carmel apartments now where after just 2.5 short years one of the kitchen cabinet doors is crooked and lawn and property maintenance seems to be lacking my old Indianapolis apartment which cost $300 less. This is one of the new star apartments. As they keep building throughout the area "deals" will start popping up creating shoppers. If your property is falling apart after year 3 what will it look like after year 5 or 10??? Why would one stay here if they could move to a new Broad Ripple in 2 to 3 years or another part of the Far Northside?? The complexes aren't going to let the "poor" move in without local permission so that's not that problem, but it the occupancy rate drops suddenly because the "Young" people moved back to Indy then look out.

  5. Why are you so concerned about Ace hardware? I don't understand why anyone goes there! Every time ive gone in the past, they don't have what I need and I end up going to the big box stores. I understand the service aspect and that they try to be helpful but if they are going to survive I think they might need to carry more specialty parts.

ADVERTISEMENT