United Way honors individuals, organizations for support of 2017 campaign

For the Metro Wire

United Way of Portage County honored dozens of volunteers and businesses for their support during the 2017 campaign at its annual Recognition Luncheon Tuesday, Jan. 23, at the Holiday Inn & Conference Center in Stevens Point.

The Blenker family, owners of Blenker Companies in Amherst—in their final role as the 2017 Campaign Drive Chairs—thanked the more than 180 United Way supporters at the luncheon for their contributions during the fall campaign that raised more than $3 million to help people in this community.

Major award winners included:

· Longtime United Way supporter and 2007 drive chair Jim Anderson of Ellis Construction received the Lifetime Achievement Award, which was presented to him by his close friend Bob Cooper.

“Jim has been keenly dedicated to the Portage County community, and that is why we are honoring him today,” said Cooper. “Jim has committed himself to building a better community. He’s done this through United Way, the Portage County Business Council, Saint Michael’s Hospital Foundation, UWSP Foundation, Stevens Point Rotary, Central Wisconsin Symphony Orchestra, and many other organizations.”

In accepting the award, Anderson said he feels fortunate to live in the Portage County community. “We have so many people who care deeply about one another and demonstrate that care through actions that have helped so many people over so many years,” said Anderson.

· Joe Kinsella of Pointe Precision received the Tina Peters Dedicated Service Award.

“One of our core values at Pointe Precision is to support our community,” said Kinsella in accepting the award. “We are fortunate to live in a community of such caring people. People who are dedicated and committed to ensure that those who are less fortunate are cared for.”

Kinsella has been volunteering for United Way since 1986 when he served as the campaign coordinator for Woodward Governor. Over the years, he has served on various United Way committees and boards, and in 2005 served as Campaign Drive Chair.

· Dori Jury, a longtime Learn for Life volunteer tutor, received the Fritzie Marquard Volunteer of the Year Award. Dori also volunteers for Project Fresh Start and Make A Difference Day each year, and is actively involved in many other community events like Walk Wisconsin.

· For the third consecutive year, Sentry Insurance received the Million Dollar Circle Award after raising $1.15 million during its 2017 campaign.

· Dawn Cherek of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Wisconsin received the Speakers Bureau Award.

· Receiving Special Recognition Awards were Patrick Schultz of Sentry Insurance, Jessica Anunson and Crystal Rowland of Blenker Companies, and Dave Morgan of the Stevens Point Area YMCA.

· Jon Gadbois received the Board President award for serving as the United Way Board of Directors President in 2017.

· Andrea Moore, Vanessa Garcia-Preciado, Adam Thompson, and Sheila Hetzel of Donaldson Company, Inc., received the Campaign Coordinator Team of the Year Award.

· Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection received the 2017 Community Spirit Award, a traveling award presented each year to an organization that demonstrates outstanding corporate and employee support of United Way, exemplifies great community spirt, and defines what it means to LIVE UNITED.

· Gamber-Johnson, Great Lakes Educational Loan Services, Ki Mobility, NRG Media, and Spectra Print received the Special Service Award for commitment, leadership and innovation through an internal campaign or on behalf of the community campaign.

· P.J. Jacobs Junior High School won the Education Services Award, which is awarded for outstanding effort from the community’s secondary and post-secondary education institutions.

· Service Cold Storage received the Best New Campaign Award.

· Sentry Insurance received the Corporate Volunteer Engagement Award for providing and promoting volunteer engagement opportunities for its employees.

Receiving Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze Corporate Campaign Awards given to businesses in each division for highest corporate gifts per capita (contribution divided by the number of employees) were:

AGRICULTURE: Platinum, Plover River Farms Alliance; Gold, Roberts Irrigation Company, Inc.; Silver, Fletcher Farms, Inc.; and Bronze, Allen Supply Company, Inc.

FINANCIAL: Platinum, BMO Harris Bank; Gold, Simplicity Credit Union – Stevens Point; Silver, Old National Bancorp; and Bronze, Investors Community Bank.

MAJOR EMPLOYERS 1: Platinum, Sentry Insurance; Gold, Donaldson Company, Inc.; Silver, Associated Bank; and Bronze, AIG Travel.

MAJOR EMPLOYERS 2: Platinum, Delta Dental of Wisconsin; Gold, WORZALLA; Silver, CN; Bronze, Neenah Paper-Whiting Mill.

MANUFACTURING AND PROCESSING: Platinum, Worth Company; Gold, Gamber-Johnson LLC; Silver, Marten Machining, Inc.; and Bronze, Biery Cheese Company.

RETAIL/WHOLESALE: Platinum, Len Dudas Motors; Gold, Midwest Hardware Association; Silver, H&S Protection Systems, Inc.; and Bronze, Mark Toyota of Plover.

SERVICES: Platinum, Blenker Companies, Inc.; Gold, Wisconsin Public Service; Silver, The Boldt Company – WRV; and Bronze, Spectra Print Corporation.

HEALTH: Platinum, Marshfield Clinic – Stevens Point Center; Gold, Ki Mobility; Silver, Cooper Dental; and Bronze, Hom Family Dentistry.

Outstanding Campaign Awards were given to P.J. Jacobs Junior High School for the Greatest Campaign Percentage Increase of All Public Schools, Pacelli High School for the Greatest Campaign Percentage Increase of All Parochial Schools, and Girl Scouts of Northwestern Great Lakes for the Greatest Campaign Percentage Increase of All Partner Agencies.

GOLD STAR Employee Campaign Awards recognizing above average giving, regardless of number of employees, for companies with a minimum of 25-percent participation and an average weekly gift over $1 for all employee donors were handed out to: Aging & Disability Resource Center; Ameriprise Financial; Anderson, O’Brien, Bertz, Skrenes & Golla; Associated Bank; Bannach Elementary; Ben Franklin Junior High School; Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection; Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Wisconsin; Blenker Companies, Inc.; Bliss Educational Service Center; Boys & Girls Club of Portage County; Bull’s Eye Credit Union; Bushmans,’ Inc.; CAP Services, Inc.; Central Waters Brewing Company; Cherek, Pucci & Quick, S.C.; Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin; CliftonLarsonAllen LLP; Community First Bank; Cooper Dental; Delta Dental of Wisconsin; DigiCOPY; Donaldson Company, Inc.; Ellis Construction Company, Inc.; Felker Brothers; Gamber-Johnson LLC; General Beer-Northeast, Inc.; Girl Scouts of Northwestern Great Lakes; Great Lakes Educational Loan Services, Inc.; H&S Protection Systems, Inc.; IBM; Infinity Foods, Inc.; Investors Community Bank; Jefferson Elementary; JHL Digital Direct; Ki Mobility; Klismith Accounting & Tax Group SC; Len Dudas Motors; Liberty Mutual; Madison Elementary; Mark Toyota of Plover; McDill Elementary; McKinley Elementary; Meals on Wheels; Mid-State Technical College; Midwest Hardware Association; National Wellness Institute; Neenah Paper – Whiting Mill; Notable Impressions; Old National Bancorp; Opportunity Development Center; Pacelli Catholic Middle School; Pineries Bank; Plover-Whiting Elementary; Point of Beginning; Pointe Precision, Inc.; Portage County Annex; Portage County Business Council; Portage County Housing Authority; Recycled Office Environments; Regnier Consulting Group; River Cities Bank; Roosevelt Elementary; Salvation Army – Hope Center; Scaffidi Motors, Inc.; Sentry Insurance; Service Cold Storage; Simplicity Credit Union – Stevens Point; St. Bronislava School; St. Stephen School; Steel King Industries; Stevens Point Area Senior High; Stevens Point Child Safety Center; Stevens Point City Hall; Stevens Point Parks & Recreation; The Boldt Company – WRV; Tomorrow River School District; United Way of Portage County; UPS; US Bank; Verso Corporation – Stevens Point Mill; Village of Plover; Washington Elementary; Welling Kitchen & Bath; WIAA; Wisconsin Public Service; Worth Company; Wysocki Family of Companies; and Younkers – Store #138.

Named to United Way’s Campaign Leaders Award Clubs were:

$1,000,000+ Club (for corporate and employee gifts of $1,000,000 or more): Sentry Insurance.

$250,000+ Club (for corporate and employee gifts of $250,000 or more): Delta Dental of Wisconsin.

$50,000+ Club (for corporate and employee gifts between $50,000 and $100,000): Ascension Health Care; Associated Bank; Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection; Donaldson Company Inc.; Skyward, Inc.; and WORZALLA.

$25,000+ Club (for corporate and employee gifts between $25,000 and $49,999): Blenker Companies, Inc.; BMO Harris Bank; CAP Services; Neenah Paper – Whiting Mill; Pointe Precision, Inc.; Scaffidi Motors; Spectra Print Corporation; Stevens Point Area Public Schools; University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point; Verso Corporation – Stevens Point Mill; Worth Company; and Wysocki Family of Companies.

$10,000+ Club (for corporate and employee gifts between $10,000 and $24,999): AIG Travel; Anderson, O’Brien, Bertz, Skrenes & Golla; CN; Ellis Construction Company, Inc.; Inclusa, Inc. – Stevens Point; Infinity Foods, Inc.; JHL Digital Direct; Ki Mobility; Len Dudas Motors; Marshfield Clinic – Stevens Point Center; Monogram Appetizers LLC; Regnier Consulting Group; The Boldt Company – WRV; United Way of Portage County; and UPS.

Named to United Way’s 100-Percent Club for companies with five or more employees reporting 100-percent participation were Ameriprise Financial; Boys & Girls Club of Portage County; General Beer-Northeast, Inc.; H&S Protection Systems, Inc.; Mid-State Technical College; National Wellness Institute; Old National Bancorp; Pineries Bank; Portage County Business Council; Recycled Office Environments; Regnier Consulting Group; Roosevelt Elementary; The Boldt Company – WRV; and United Way of Portage County.

The Blenker family concluded their tenure as Campaign Drive Chairs by passing the leadership torch to the team of Kathy Davies, Vikki Nason, Amber Houck, Shannon Semmerling, and Anna Weisbrod. “On behalf of the women standing beside me, each representing a different decade of experiences of living, studying, working and volunteering in our community, we look forward to serving you in 2018,” said Davies. “Like you, we each have a story to share – a story about how our community and the people we have met have helped us and helped shaped our lives.”