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United Way Holds Annual Breakfast


Over 200 people attended the United Way of Lamar County’s Annual Breakfast Meeting on Wednesday morning at the Love Civic Center.  

The event, which recognizes the previous year’s outstanding workplace campaigns and volunteers, is usually held in February, but they postponed it several times due to the pandemic.

United Way Executive Director Jenny Wilson began the meeting by explaining how much the United Way had changed in the past 18 months. “The last time we all met was in February of 2020, just before the world changed,” she began. “Since then, the United Way has changed our mission from being primarily a fundraiser to directly assisting those in need. We exist to be whatever this community needs us to be and to serve those most in need.” She explained one of the ways they have done that are through their rent and utility assistance programs which in 2020 distributed over $70,000 in assistance and so far in 2021 has helped over 350 families with nearly 100,000 in aid. Wilson also added that the United Way has expanded its educational programs and will always be committed to funding and collaborating with their partner agencies to help the community.

The awards ceremony began with the three formers Board of Directors, Trey Glascock, Robin Kennedy, and Neta Painter, who rolled off the board at the beginning of the year. 

Next, the top workplace campaigns were recognized, including Platinum Level Givers ($40,000+) Turner Industries, Campbell Soup, HWH, Paris Regional Medical Center; Gold Level Givers ($20,000+) Liberty National Bank, First Federal Community Bank, Lamar National Bank, Paris ISD, RK Hall Construction, and Kimberly-Clark; Silver Level Givers ($10,000+) North Lamar ISD; and Bronze Level Givers ($5,000+) Toyota of Paris, Blossom Machine, Huhtamaki, Lamar County, City of Paris, Richard Drake Construction, Peoples Bank, and Paris Junior College.

The Campaign Cabinet volunteers that ran these workplace campaigns were also recognized. They included Jane Adams, Julia Trigg Crawford, Randy Tuttle, Kandace Davidson, Cindy Ringwald, Lauren Wilson, Chance Abbott, Jennifer Ray, Jerrika Liggins, Angela Chadwick, Carla Coleman, Lauren Teague, James Hall, Laurie Redus, Clint Cheatwood, Brenda Wells, Jason Exum, Melissa Gordon, Trey Glascock, and Kenneth Webb.

Wilson also thanked Atmos Energy for underwriting the United Way’s new mini library and mini food pantry programs. He thanked the dozens of small businesses and individuals who gave over $100,000 annually to the campaign.

The Partner Agency Volunteer of the Year was awarded to Silas Goforth for his service at the Downtown Food Pantry.

This year’s Lifetime Community Service Leadership awards were given posthumously to Philip Cecil and Pat Cochran. Mary Clark presented the awards and detailed the significant contributions each made to Lamar County during their lifetimes. Carl Cecil and Dr. Ernie Cochran accepted the awards to a standing ovation.  

The United Way of Lamar County is currently running its Fall Campaign for 2022 funding with a $550,000 goal. The campaign runs through mid-November, and those interested in donating can mail donations to PO Box 1, Paris TX 75461, or donate online at www.lamarcountyuw.org.