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Thursday, May 1, 2014

United Way Recognizes Volunteers

The United Way of the Bradford Area hosted the annual Red Feather Volunteer recognition luncheon on Thursday, honoring Lisa Minich.

The event, which took place at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford, is held to honor outstanding individuals and/or businesses who have made an impact on the United Way of the Bradford Area, and the local community as a whole, through their day-to-day selfless attitudes and commitment to exemplifying the organization’s mission of enhancing the quality of life in the greater Bradford Area.

Minich was presented her award by close friend, Jeannine Schoenecker, and her son, Dan Minich.

“Over the last three years, Lisa has been the driving force behind the success of the leadership division, during which time giving in this category went from a little more than $40,000 in 2011 to more than $57,000 in 2013,” said Schoenecker.

Dan Minich referenced his grandfather - Lisa’s father - as being her philanthropic inspiration. “My mom would tell me stories about my grandfather and how he persevered to provide for his wife and eight children almost entirely on his own, but how he always made sure to help someone in need. That mentality has been her driving force in the ways in which she gives back today.

“And, although my mom has made financial contributions to impact local organizations, the power isn’t always just in the pen, and how many checks one can write. I’ve seen her dedicate endless hours to volunteerism, always placing her personal time aside to benefit the many needs of this community which she loves,” he said.

Lisa said that while she was truly appreciative of the recognition, she feels more comfortable being the behind-the-scenes volunteer.

“I am so proud to be part of this community, because it’s true what they say – we are a small town with big hearts,” said Minich. “But, I know there’s a lot of work that can still be done, and I am confident that by working together, we’ll achieve those goals and make this an even better place to call home.”

Minich also congratulated the Excellence in Representation recipients; Tom Miller, Ashley Peterson and Mike Walter.

“I am so honored to be sharing this day with these three wonderful people, who are true representatives of the power of paying it forward.

In accepting his award, Miller said that volunteering his time for the UWBA’s Speaker’s Bureau is one of his favorite things to do.

“I really enjoy talking to all of the people about Futures and about the United Way, and I can’t wait to do it again!”

For her part, Peterson thanked everyone for taking time out of their day to celebrate with them. “And, I thank you all for your support of the United Way,” she said.

Walter talked about the 20 years he has spent volunteering for the Speaker’s Bureau, and said he’ll be doing some “arm twisting” come the fall to make sure that the annual campaign meets its goal.

“Tom’s personality is as infectious as they come, and I personally enjoy watching his love and excitement in everything he does,” said Executive Director Mandi Wilton Davis. “Ashley’s professionalism is to be commended. She truly loves public speaking, and it shows.

“And, Mike and I go way back. We became friends in 1997, and have remained friends since. No one has a heart like Mike’s,” said Davis.

The United Way is preparing for the 4th annual Day of Action, scheduled for June 21st, as well as the 2014 campaign, which will kick-off in 107 days.

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