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WOOSTER -- The United Way of Wayne and Holmes Counties held its annual meeting on Thursday, April 6 and recognized those who have helped empower people to break the cycle of poverty.
Prior to recognizing the award winners, Executive Director Todd Jasin announced that the 2016 campaign raised $1,304,000 for the community or 90 percent of the goal.
"We continue to have a strong donor base, and the results speak highly of your generosity," said Jasin.
Jasin explained that the United Way teamed up with volunteers and issue experts to identify areas that United Way could take the lead on.
"There were four areas we identified," Jasin said. "This year we are going to focus on two of those, workforce development and youth development."
"We would like to thank, again, our workforce campaign ambassadors," said Laura Newberry-Yokley, manager of marketing and community engagement at United Way of Wayne and Holmes Counties. "The ambassadors are the backbone of every company campaign, they can make or break it."
"They are the passionate go-getters full of heart and empathy who take time out of their busy schedules to add campaign responsibilities to their already-full workload. We are extremely grateful to each and every ambassador."
Marketing and campaign coordinator Emily McNeil joined Newberry-Yokely to present the awards of recognition for the 2016 campaign year.
"We would like to recognize one ambassador for her tenacious leadership," said McNeil. "This person endured and excelled and for her patience, perseverance and passion we award the Ambassador of the Year Award to Sara-Ann Mathias."
Other award winners were:
■ Wooster City Schools -- Outstanding Campaign Team
■ Akron Brass Company -- Rising Star
■ College of Wooster -- Get Connected Organization of the Year
■ Kathy Rusiska -- Get Connected Person of the Year
■ Cameron Maneese -- Community Innovation
■ Corporate Giving 1-50 employees -- Ohio CAT
■ Corporate Giving 51-150 employees -- Wayne Savings Community Bank
■ Corporate Giving 150+ employees -- Akron Brass Co.
■ Employee Giving 10-50 employees -- Wooster Hydrostatics Inc.
■ Employee Giving 51-150 employees -- United Titanium Inc.
■ Employee Giving 151+ employees -- Akron Brass Co.
■ Partner Provider Giving 1-10 employees -- Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio
■ Partner Provider Giving 11-50 employees -- Salvation Army Wooster Corps
■ Partner Provider Giving 51+ employees -- OneEighty Inc.
■ The 2016 Stanleys' Cup Award Winner was presented to Wayne Insurance Group. The award is named in honor of local philanthropic leaders, the late Stanley Gault and the late Stanley Welty, Jr.
In his keynote talk, speaker Chris Thompson spoke about the importance of collaboration to achieve change and move in a positive direction. The topic was a sentiment Gault had expressed previously, "We don't work for each other. We work with each other."
Reporter Dan Starcher can be reached at email@example.com. He is @danstarcher on Twitter.