A publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

United Way honors 100 volunteer leaders at Gathering of Heroes Centennial event

United Way of Greater Cincinnati kicked off its year-long centennial celebration Tuesday at a Gathering of Heroes reception and dinner at Duke Energy Convention Center. The recognition honored 100 heroes who have helped shape and improve the community.

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These 100 people have provided volunteer leadership and service to United Way over the past 70 of those 100 years. They represent the thousands of volunteers who make United Way and the community better today, and the millions of volunteers who have dedicated themselves to improving lives and the community over the past 100 years – coming together to help the entire community, to advance the common good – the lifeblood of United Way since since that first handful of volunteers came together in 1915.

Phil Schworer

Phil Schworer

The list includes a number of Northern Kentuckians, among them Gary Bricking, retired ULH&P executive; Mer Grayson of Central Bank, Joseph Geraci, retired Cincinnati Bell executive; former NKU President Jim Votruba, attorney Phillip Schworer, attorney Col Owens,and retired Macy’s executive Thomas Cody.

The celebration is also as tribute to the tens of millions of donors who have shown that community is important and a tribute to the thousands of companies and organizations that donate and make it possible for their employees to give, advocate and volunteer every day.

The event also pays tribute to the thousands of community and agency partners, from the first dozen that formed the Council of Social Agencies in 1915, to the several hundred today, and to current and past United Way staff team members.

The evening will conclude with a brief video to inspire attendees to invite others to join United Way in changing lives through a personal partnership with United Way – to achieve the Bold Goals for Our Region in the next few years.

Mer Grayson

Mer Grayson

Dinner chair is Sara Ellerhorst. Centennial chairs are Carrie and John Hayden. Carrie Hayden has volunteered for United Way for more than 20 years, has chaired United Way’s Board of Directors, and is one of United Way’s 100 Heroes. John led the Midland Company to be one of United Way’s Top 25 supporters.

Honorary emcee is Jim Scott, recently retired from WLW Radio. Emcee is Carol Williams from United Way’s Centennial media sponsor, Scripps, WCPO, 9 On Your Side and WCPO Insider.

Sponsors of the year’s centennial celebration are P&G and Western & Southern Financial Group.

The honorees are:

James Anderson
Patricia A. Armstrong
Gerald Banks
Karen Bankston
John W. Beatty
Kathy P. Beechem
Karen Bell
Paul A. Bernish
Anthony E. Bezold
Peter Bloch
Barbara J. Bonifas
Jon B. Boss
Thomas A. Brennan
Gary R. Bricking
Herbert R. Brown
Mary H. Brown
Donald B. Bush
Stephanie W. Byrd
Bernardo J. Calonge
Brian Carley
Kevin Carroll
Lee and Shannon Carter
Thomas G. Cody
Philip T. Cohen
Mark Cosimi
Phillip R. Cox
Dennis C. Cuneo
Deborah Gentry Davis
David Deitsch
David Dougherty
James C. and Sara Ellerhorst
David Faulk
Michael A. and Suzette Fisher
S. Kay Geiger
Jodi M. Geiser
Joseph Geraci
Crystal Gibson
Victoria Buyniski Gluckman
Merwin Grayson, Jr.
Stewart Greenlee
Michele Hawkins
Carrie K. Hayden
Arlene Herman
Grant V. Hesser
Tillie Hidalgo Lima
Catherine Ingram
Mark J. and Karen Jahnke
Deborah A. Jefferson
David Joyce
Harold A. (Hal) Klink
Brenda M. Kloos
M.H. “Mike” Kremzar

Michael J. Laatsch
Hannah and Alexander Laman
Jean B. Lauterbach
Wendy Levine
Jonathan and Nancy Lippincott
Kathleen P. List
Dennis L. Loje
John D. Luken
Rev. Damon Lynch, Jr.
Mike Manzler
Andrew J. McCreanor
Jill T. McGruder
Charles Milton
William J. Moran
H.A. Musser, Jr.
Victor Needham
Lisa O’Brien
Ross Collins (Col) Owens III
J. James Pearce Jr.
Patricia Pensak
John E. and Francie Pepper
David Phillips
Julia Poston
Myrtis H. Powell
John Prout
Cheryl Rose
Carl Satterwhite
George A. Schaefer
Rosemary Schlachter
James E. and Vivian Schwab
Milton S. Schwartz
Philip Schworer
Jim Scott
Phyllis S. Sewell
Jay Shatz
Carol Z. Shea
Valarie L. Sheppard
Steve and Julie Shifman
Donald C. Siekmann
Patricia Mann Smitson
Robie Suggs
David E. Szkutak
Cheryl Thomas
Wendy K. Vonderhaar
James C. Votruba
Kathy R. Wade
David R. Walker
Sallie Westheimer
John V. Wharton
Mauri Willis
Charles J. Winger
Jim Zimmerman

From United Way of Greater Cincinnati

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