United Way of Metro Chicago Honors the Region’s Most Philanthropic Leaders

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Business, community and labor gamechangers recognized at annual luncheon event.

United Way of Metro Chicago hosted the 2019 Stronger Neighborhoods Awards Luncheon in celebration of the individuals, businesses and community organizations that have joined forces to drive change at the neighborhood level across the Chicago region.

At today’s annual luncheon event, United Way raised more than half a million dollars to support their fight to transform lives and build stronger neighborhoods. By uniting changemakers across industries, United Way works to ensure that the public, private, labor and academic sectors are working together to address the Chicago region’s most pressing needs.

“At United Way, we’re lucky to work alongside some of the most talented and dedicated civic leaders in the Chicago region,” said Sean Garrett, President and CEO of United Way of Metro Chicago. “The challenges facing our communities are complex and multifaceted, and tackling them requires a collaborative approach. With the enduring support of partners like Lester McKeever, Exelon, the Obama Foundation and many more, we’re working to make every neighborhood a place that people are proud to call home.”

This year’s event honored three of the Chicago region’s most distinguished philanthropic leaders and their commitment to improving outcomes for children and families across our region. Lester H. McKeever Jr., Partner of Mitchell & Titus, LLP and Managing Principal of Washington, Pittman & McKeever, LLC, received the Lifetime Leadership Award in recognition of his lifetime of service to the Chicago region and his enduring dedication to improving the lives of all its residents. Exelon Corporation received the Corporate Leadership Award in recognition of their steadfast partnership with United Way and dedication to empowering individuals and communities. The Obama Foundation received the Community Leadership Award for their continued investment in the economic advancement of the south side of Chicago and its residents.

The region’s top business leaders where recognized for their leadership, vision and commitment to the community. BMO Financial Group received the Top Corporate Citizen Award for their enduring support of United Way’s work, including their Cornerstone Investment and additional pledge of $3 million to the Neighborhood Network Initiative.

Additionally, United Way recognized two agency partners for their best in class service and enduring impact on the lives of the clients they serve, with Primo Center for Women and Children receiving The Agency Partner of the Year Award and YWCA Evanston/North Shore receiving The Neighborhood Network Agency Partner of the Year Award.

The event was co-chaired by Jeff Devron, President-Chicagoland, Arthur J. Gallagher & Co; Bob Reiter, President, Chicago Federation of Labor; Dorri C. McWhorter, Chief Executive Officer, YWCA Metropolitan Chicago; Melvin D. Williams, President, Nicor Gas; and Kristie P. Paskvan.

For more information about the event, visit LIVEUNITEDchicago.org/stronger-neighborhoods.

About United Way of Metro Chicago
United Way of Metro Chicago fights for the health, education, financial stability and safety of every person in every neighborhood across the region. We advance the common good on both a regional and neighborhood level by focusing on the building blocks for thriving people and communities: access to quality health care, a good education, financial stability and ensuring people are safe. United Way’s Neighborhood Network Initiative supports and coordinates investment and programming in 10 city and suburban communities to address community challenges and improve the lives of residents. Join the fight at LIVEUNITEDchicago.org.

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Kiara Goodwin
United Way of Metro Chicago
+1 (312) 906-2291
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