December 9, 2014 – Olympia, WA. – United Way Associations in Washington and Oregon are joining together to have a stronger impact on education, income and health outcomes in the Pacific Northwest.
Thirty-nine United Ways in the multi-state region, including United Way of Thurston County agreed to form United Ways of the Pacific Northwest last month and will participate in this enhanced regional trade association. Each local United Way is fully independent and focused on their local community. By coming together in this larger regional strategic collaboration, they will be able to do more for their local communities as well as have a wider impact regionally. United Ways of the Pacific Northwest supports training and skill development for local United Way staff and boards, advocates for state level public policy and systems change and supports initiatives to grow the value and outcomes of United Ways across the region.
“We’re excited about the possibilities moving forward,” said Executive Director of United Way of Thurston County, Paul Knox. “By working together, we will be able to do more for our communities,” he added. Knox was the Chair of United Ways of Washington in 2014 and will continue to serve on the executive committee of the newly formed organization.
The current president and CEO of United Ways of Washington, Jim Cooper, will play the same role for the new, expanded organization.
“At the end of the day, collaborating throughout the region will help us bring in additional resources and make it possible to have a larger impact on the communities we serve,” said Cooper.
The new organization includes 23 members from United Ways of Washington and 16 from the Association of United Ways in Oregon. Two longtime members of United Ways of Washington are headquartered in Idaho.
The full slate of officers for United Ways of the Pacific Northwest include:
Chair: Dennis Smith (President and CEO of United Way of Snohomish County)
Vice Chair: Keith Thomajan (President and CEO of United Way of the Columbia-Willamette)
Treasurer: Peter Theisen (President and CEO of United Way of Whatcom County)
Secretary: Debra Lancaster (Executive Director, United Way of Skagit County)
Past Chair: Paul Knox (Executive Director, United Way of Thurston County)
The new organization can be found online at UWPNW.org, on Facebook at Facebook.com/UWPNW and on Twitter as @UWPNW.