Deb Thompson became the new President/CEO of United Way of the Coastal Empire (UWCE) in August 2018. She replaced Gregg Schroeder who retired after 33 years.  She is the first woman and non-United Way member to be appointed for this position in 80 years! She comes with a strong business background and understands the struggles of small business start-ups.  In addition, she has personally benefited from the United Way as a single mother and recipient of United Way funds.  Deb says now it's her turn to give back.  
UWCE has the same mission and focus of United Way worldwide, but is a franchise.  What does this mean?  It means for every dollar you donate to the UWCE, 96 cents of every dollar is going to a service/program in OUR community. It's important to note that overhead expenses do not come out of donations.  These expenses specifically come out of a trust fund - Herschel Jenkins Trust Fund.
Deb talked about the extensive process that non-profits must go through to receive funds, as well as the Allocation Committee, a group of community and business volunteers who visit each agency, meet their staff, and see how the programs work. Last year, 55% of the campaign was designated by donors to go to specific organizations and the remaining 45% funded the rest of the programs. 
Deb talked about the future of UWCE. Where are we going? She mentioned UWCE and the community (private businesses, government, non-profits, religious sects, etc.) working collaboratively to solve our local community issues to make our area attractive for business. She is hoping to create multi levels of relationships with non-profits and have incubators to teach business savvy skills to help make each non-profit stronger in our community. 
Now, what can we do to help?