Uhler named United Way 2011-12 Campaign Chair
Sanibel resident Tom Uhler, founding principal of Uhler and Vertich Financial Planners and a United Way Board Member, has been named 2011-12 United Way Campaign Chair. In his position, Uhler will lead the campaign that includes thousands of volunteers working to meet the $8,030,533 fundraising goal.
“I feel greatly honored to be selected as the United Way Campaign Chair,” said Uhler. “It is a big responsibility that I take on gladly and with enthusiasm because I believe in the United Way and what it does to strengthen our community.”
Uhler is a 35 year veteran of the financial services profession. He has been in leadership positions with several non-profit organizations and has served on the board of the Southwest Florida Symphony and was board president for two terms. In 2010, Uhler was named Junior Achievement of Southwest Florida Lee County Business Hall of Fame laureate.
“Our United Way has met its fundraising goals year after year, even during the difficult economic times of the past few years,” he explained. “While there are some signs of improvement in the economy, the needs of our neighbors have not lessened. Many individuals and families who have never asked for help in the past are coming to United Way partner agencies or calling United Way 211 due to loss of jobs, and other overwhelming financial or medical issues,” said Tom Uhler.
According to Uhler, the help line for human services has experienced dramatic growth in the number of calls it receives requesting help with food, counseling, medical care, utilities and other issues. Before the economic downturn, United Way 211 received an average of 2,500 calls per month. In July, United Way 211 handled more than 4,700 calls for help.
“I have been active in the United Way’s allocation process for many years, and therefore have visited the agencies that receive United Way funds,” said Uhler. “One of the reasons that chairing the campaign means so much to me is that you cannot do that for as long as I have without grasping the real need in our community.”
Since the inception of United Way in 1957, $100 million has been raised in the Southwest Florida community. All money raised in the campaign helps support the local human service network. United Way Partner Agencies and initiatives such as the, Alvin A Dubin Alzheimer’s Resource Center, LARC, Harry Chapin Food Bank, the Boys and Girls Clubs and United Way 211 serve a diverse range of needs in our community such as nurturing children and youth, strengthening families, meeting critical needs such as helping the elderly and disabled live independently, and empowering communities by bringing health and human services to neighborhoods.
“I am passionate about the United Way and look forward to a successful campaign,” added Uhler. “With your help, we will meet our campaign goal. With your help, we can change lives. With your help, we can make our community stronger.”
In addition to raising funds for human service organizations in our community, the United Way promotes partnerships and collaborations among agencies and initiatives, helping them to work together focusing on issues and solutions that continue to improve lives.
For more information, call United Way of Lee, Hendry and Glades at 239-433-2000 or visit www.unitedwaylee.org.