United Way of Central Georgia Campaign Raises Over $4.9M

Staff Report From Middle Georgia CEO

Monday, March 27th, 2017

United Way of Central Georgia reported at the Annual Meeting & Award’s Luncheon that the 2016 campaign generated a total of $4,969,225, the second largest amount United Way of Central Georgia has ever raised.

GEICO and its associates were United Way of Central Georgia’s top contributor for the 13th year in a row. GEICO associates raised $835,914 and their corporate gift was $204,403, for a grand total of $1,040,317.

This year marks our 95th anniversary. Ninety-five years ago, local businessman J. Clay Murphey started the Community Chest which eventually became United Way. Our organization’s lifespan and continuous growth shows how unique and special this organization is. President and CEO George McCanless said:

“The average lifespan of a company listed in the S&P 500 index of leading U.S. companies has decreased by more than 50 years in the last century, from 67 years in the 1920s to just 15 years today. A big part of the reason we have remained strong all these many years is by continuing to change to meet the changing needs of the community.” 

Over the years, United Way has given out many special awards to those who go above and beyond. This year is no different. United Way’s Jack H. Steed Lifetime Achievement Award was proudly given to the Murphey family to honor the legacy of our founder, J. Clay Murphey.

“Thank you to the Murphey family,” said George McCanless. “Including this year’s campaign, I went back and converted each year’s campaign totals to dollars. In our 95-year history, the community has raised $326,200,000 – that has helped improve millions of our neighbors’ lives. What a legacy!”

Our United Action Award was given to MidSouth Community Federal Credit Union. This award recognizes a company that has gone above and beyond the work campaign through their community engagement. MidSouth’s associates and leadership team has volunteered for many opportunities, assisted with events such as Read Across America, and has financially supported United Way programs.

Another special award, our 3rd Annual LT. Randy Parker Memorial Volunteer of the Year, was given to Jeff Battcher this year. This award was created to recognize an outstanding volunteer that has exhibited a spirit and dedication to raise awareness for all that United Way is doing in the community.

Additionally, a new program was announced that recognizes the top companies in United Way of Central Georgia’s campaign, our Most Generous Workplaces. Thomas Bacote, Market President for iHeart Media and Chair of our Marketing Committee, said:

“The leaders on this list are determined by their philanthropic contributions to United Way of Central Georgia during the previous year. Through their corporate and employee giving, sponsorships, in-kind and initiative support, these Most Generous Companies are investing in a better future for Central Georgia and its residents.”

The top 10 Most Generous Workplaces of 2016 include:

  1. GEICO

  2. Georgia Power Company

  3. Publix Super Markets

  4. Perdue Farms

  5. Mercer University

  6. State Bank & Trust Company

  7. Robins Financial Credit Union

  8. Combined Federal Campaign

  9. Navicent Health

  10. Kroger

New board members were elected during the business part of the meeting. They include: Thomas Bacote, iHeart Media; Larry Brumley, Mercer University; Hope Hines, Exchange Bank; and Theresa Robinson, Georgia Power.