Published January 23, 2018
Members of the UB community gathered yesterday to celebrate another successful Employees Campaign for the Community.
UB employees contributed $830,271 to the 2017 campaign, making it the 17th consecutive year the campaign has eclipsed the $800,000 mark. Since 1976, the campaign has raised more than $17 million.
“Eighty percent of these funds stay in the Western New York area,” campaign chair Graham Hammill told those gathered in Bansal Atrium in Davis Hall for the annual campaign wrap-up event that recognizes the people who make UB’s campaign consistently one of the five largest university giving campaigns in the nation.
“I think it says a lot about the kind of university we are and the kind of community we are. It’s been my honor to lead this year’s effort for the campaign,” said Hammill, vice provost for educational affairs and dean of the Graduate School.
Paulette Crooke, chair for the United Way of Buffalo and Erie County’s 2017 campaign, considers UB’s campaign unique among those in the area that help fund the United Way’s charitable agencies.
“We had two campaigns that hit a million dollars this year: Wegmans and M&T,” Crooke said. “But their support is by corporate gifts, and Wegmans has their scanning program. The UB program is comprised entirely of [the community’s] generosity, contributions and funds. In that respect, it far outweighs the other two campaigns.”
UB’s campaign also exceeded its goal of establishing new donors. This year’s effort included 393 new donors — an 18 percent increase over the previous year — who contributed $47,000 to the campaign.
Nine university units met their individual financial goals set for this year’s campaign: the schools of Architecture and Planning, Management, Nursing and Social Work; the Office of the President, the UB Foundation, the Emeritus Center, University Communications and the Office of the Provost.
Kelly Stich of University Business Services was named Volunteer of the Year for embodying the spirit of the campaign to its fullest extent.
John Lambert of Student Life received the Unsung Hero award for his vital and significant work behind the scenes.
The Office of the Vice President for Finance and Administration was the recipient of the Progress Maker award, given to a university unit that made significant strides, but ultimately didn’t meet its financial and participation goals.
The Chair’s Cup, awarded at the discretion of Hammill to a unit showing exemplary commitment, was given to University Communications.
The campaign highest honor, the Bennett Cup was awarded to the School of Architecture and Planning. Named after Robert Bennett, former president and CEO of the United Way of Buffalo and Erie County, the award is given to a unit successful in increasing new dollars, donors or participants.
“Every year [UB] does more and more, not only with the dollars, but with the engagement within the community and impacting so many different lives in different ways,” said Bennett, who presented the Bennett Cup. “This is a campaign that relies on the worker bees and personal contacts. It’s proven that that’s the best way to fundraise.”
“The impact that this money will have on the welfare of children and the isolated elderly in our community will be very substantial,” he said.
Campaign contributions benefit 12,000 agencies that fall under the umbrella of the United Way of Buffalo and Erie County, as well as many more that don’t.
At this time, the campaign is $20,000 short of its goal, and donations are still being accepted. Those interested in making a donation can visit the campaign website.