The excitement was contagious when Lenawee Cares officially launched its 3rd annual campaign on Tuesday, September 11. The kickoff was held at The Adrian Armory and Event Center in downtown Adrian, and sponsored by Mark and Mary Murray.
Dave Herriman, President, Kemner Iott Benz, and Christopher Phillips, Vice President and Senior Trust Officer, County National Bank, are serving as co-chairs of the Lenawee Cares campaign, a program of Lenawee Community Foundation. Dave Hickman, Chair of the Foundation board of directors stated, “Lenawee is first in our name, because its first in our hearts.”
Herriman and Phillips reported that generous donors and prudent fiscal management had resulted in great progress for Lenawee Cares. Since its launch in 2016, annual overhead has been cut $150,000 and grants and distributions to the local nonprofits have increased by 46% and they are being disbursed much more quickly.
The Lenawee Cares Advisory Board members, who serve with Herriman and Phillips were introduced, including: Chair Doug Gray, Gray Institute; Vice Chair, Paula Holtz, Michigan Economic Development Corporation; Jacob Cooper, Kapnick Insurance; Marne Davies, Kapnick Insurance; Deb Elliott, Gleaner Life Insurance Society; Mark Haag, Lenawee Intermediate School District; Jim Hartley, Madison School District retiree; Khris Henson-Jones, University of Michigan and former local nonprofit executive director; Kim Langley, ProMedica; Joe MacVicar, Kirchoff Automotive; Katie Mattison, First Federal Bank; Janis Montalvo, Love Living in Lenawee Realty; Mary Murray, Image Center; Londa Pickles, Gurdjian Insurance; Brent Schedeler, Brazeway, Inc.; Janelle Stewart, MSU Extension/4-H; and Joe Williams, Old National Bank.
In addition to carrying out the annual, fall campaign, the Lenawee Cares Advisory Board conducts the grant-making process. In 2018 local nonprofits are receiving grants and designations totaling $437,000, as 2017 pledges are fulfilled. In fact by September 30, 82% of the annual funding will be paid to the agencies. Organizations receiving funding include: Adrian Community Preschool, Associated Charities, Boys & Girls Club, Catherine Cobb Safe House, Daily Bread, Goodwill, Habitat, HOPE Community Center, Hospice, Housing Help, St. Mary’s Food Pantry, St. Vincent de Paul Food Pantry, YMCA, and many more.
Herriman and Phillips acknowledged the Tomorrow’s Pillars Club chair, Jen Lopez, and committee members, Nicki Shoemaker, Sara Herriman, Ashley Beevers, Nicole Hood, and Brandi Bauer. They host events for the 40 & under crowd, and encourage giving at generous levels based on one’s age.
Appreciation was also expressed for Frank Dick, who is chairing the Pillars Club, consisting of 139 individuals or couples giving $1,000 or more, who in 2017 generously donated $273,000. In 2018 more than $80,000 has already been committed.
With the campaign just beginning, it was reported that the first workplace campaign to be completed was Kemner Iott Benz, reporting an impressive 26% increase. Other early results included the Lenawee Cares
Advisory Board members reporting $19,350 in commitments; Anderson Development with a generous $5,000 corporate gift; Madison School District reporting more than $7,500 and still in progress; Old National Bank with gifts exceeding $24,000; and Lenawee Community Foundation staff and board gifts anticipated to exceed $55,000.
Dave Herriman and Christopher Phillips announced that the goal is $600,000 this year, which is a 12% increase. They expressed optimism in attaining the goal, and more importantly, helping more people in Lenawee with basic needs, such as housing, clothing, and food. Kasey White told her personal story of being helped as a child at Associated Charities, and now being able to give back to the agency that helped her.
Because the Lenawee Cares kickoff was held on 9/11, attendees had an opportunity to participate in a service project to honor community heroes on the National Day of Service & Remembrance.
Individuals or businesses with questions, comments, or an interest in participation in Lenawee Cares, are welcome to call Lenawee Community Foundation at (517) 423-1729, or contact Sue Hammersmith or Paula Trentmen.