United Way honors individuals, organizations for support of 2016 campaign

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United Way of Portage County honored dozens of volunteers and businesses for their support during the 2016 campaign at its annual Recognition Luncheon Wednesday, Feb. 1, at the Holiday Inn & Conference Center in Stevens Point.

The Hofmeister/Okray family, owners of Spectra Print in Stevens Point – in their final role as the 2016 Campaign Drive Chairs – role thanked the more than 220 United Way supporters at the luncheon for their contributions during the fall campaign that raised more than $2.93 million to help people in this community.

Major award winners included:

  • Longtime United Way supporters, volunteers, and 2010 drive chairs Bob and Mary Berard received the Lifetime Achievement Award, which was presented to them by their close friends, John and Patty Noel. “A lifetime achievement award is a way of recognizing a couple that – through their leadership – has given us a path to follow, a star to watch, a sunrise that glows, an optimistic forever that will never dim because the lasting effect of their generosity has been permanently etched in the minds and hearts of generations now and that follow us in the future,” said John Noel.
    Patty Noel highlighted the Berard’s contributions to the community. She said United Way and many of its partner agencies including the CAP Services Family Crisis Center, Stevens Point Area YMCA, and Boys & Girls Club of Portage County have all benefited because of the Berard’s generosity and volunteer commitments to those organizations.
  • Jim Weishan of Sentry Insurance received the Tina Peters Dedicated Service Award. “To receive this recognition from an organization and people that I admire and have respected for years, I am truly grateful,” said Weishan, who thanked all who have supported him over the years.
    In presenting the award to him, United Way of Portage County Executive Director Sue Wilcox said Weishan has been instrumental in leading United Way. “For many years, the United Way Vision Council has guided the direction of United Way funding priorities and decisions. Likewise, Jim Weishan, as the chair of Vision Council for many years, has been a visionary for this United Way and this community,” said Wilcox. “Always looking at the big picture, always asking ‘what if’ and always mindful of the pulse of the community, Jim has generated trust.”
  • Heather Wynne of Associated Bank received the Fritzie Marquard Volunteer of the Year Award. “I believe that volunteering is something that anybody can do,” said Wynne. “It’s about giving something that can be more valuable than money – your time. I encourage everyone here to find your volunteer opportunity and give back to your community with your valuable time. You get back so much more than you give."
  • For the second consecutive year, Sentry Insurance received the Million Dollar Circle Award after raising $1.1 millioin during its 2016 campaign. Our two weeks is by far and away the most fun two weeks in Sentry’s year. Those two weeks are totally crazy and fun. It is a lot of fun,” said Pete McPartland, Sentry chairman of the board, president and CEO. “Sentry people care about Central Wisconsin because Central Wisconsin is such a great place to live. It is so important that everyone pitch in and do whatever we can to enhance the quality of life and to enhance the quality of life for those who are not as fortunate economically as a lot of us are.”
  • Shannon Flaherty of Associated Bank received the Speakers Bureau Award.
  • Receiving Special Recognition Awards were Nathaniel Springer, Steve Martin, Don Scaffidi, and Tom Davis.
  • Mark Hilliker received the Board President Award for serving as the United Way Board of Directors President in 2016.
  • Cheryl Filtz, Cheryl Bloczynski and Barbara Lepkowski of Ministry Saint Michael’s Hospital – part of Ascension Health Care received the Campaign Coordinator Team of the Year Award.
  • Associated Bank received the 2016 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.
  • Donaldson Company, Neenah Paper-Whiting Mill, Verso Corporation-Stevens Point Mill and Skyward received the Special Service Award for commitment, leadership and innovation through an internal campaign or on behalf of the community campaign.
  • Mid-State Technical College won the Education Services Award, which is awarded for outstanding effort from the community’s secondary and post-secondary education institutions.
  • Monogram Foods received the Best New Campaign Award.

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, Worzella & Sons, Inc.; Gold, Plover River Farms Alliance; Silver, Roberts Irrigation Company, Inc.; and Bronze, Fletcher Farms, Inc.

FINANCIAL: Platinum, BMO Harris Bank; Gold, Simplicity Credit Union – Stevens Point; Silver, Investors Community Bank; and Bronze, International Bank of Amherst.

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

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

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

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

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

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

Outstanding Campaign Awards were given to Kennedy Elementary School for the Greatest Campaign Percentage Increase of All Public Schools, St. Stanislaus School for the Greatest Campaign Percentage Increase of All Parochial Schools, and Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin 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; Biery Cheese Company; Big Brothers Big Sisters of Portage County; Blenker Companies, Inc.; Bliss Educational Service Center; Boys & Girls Club of Portage County; Bulls Eye Credit Union; Bushmans, Inc.; CAP Services, Inc.; CCCW - Stevens Point; Cherek, Pucci & Quick, S.C.; Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin; CliftonLarsonAllen LLP; Community First Bank; Community Industries Corporation; Cooper Dental; Delta Dental of Wisconsin; DigiCOPY; Donaldson Company, Inc.; Ellis Construction Company, Inc.; Enterprise Rent-A-Car; 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.; International Bank of Amherst; Investors Community Bank; Jefferson Elementary; JHL Digital Direct; Kennedy Elementary; Klismith Accounting & Tax Group SC; Len Dudas Motors; Madison Elementary; Mark Toyota of Plover; McDill Elementary; McKinley Elementary; Meals on Wheels; Mid-State Technical College; Midwest Hardware Association; NAPA Distribution Center; National Wellness Institute; Neenah Paper - Whiting Mill; Notable Impressions; Old National Bancorp - Stevens Point Branch; Pineries Bank; Plover-Whiting Elementary; Point of Beginning; Pointe Precision, Inc.; Portage County 6th Judicial District; Portage County Business Council; Portage County Gazette; Portage County Housing Authority; Recycled Office Environments; Regnier Consulting Group; River Cities Bank; Roosevelt Elementary; Scaffidi Motors, Inc.; Sentry Insurance; Simplicity Credit Union - Stevens Point; Skyward, Inc.; Spectra Print Corporation; St. Bronislava School; St. Peter Middle School; St. Stanislaus 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.

$100,000+ Club (for corporate and employee gifts of $100,000 or more): Associated Bank.

$50,000+ Club (for corporate and employee gifts between $50,000 and $100,000): Donaldson Company Inc.; Ministry Saint Michael’s Hospital – part of Ascension Health Care; Skyward, Inc.; and WORZALLA.

$25,000+ Club (for corporate and employee gifts between $25,000 and $49,999): Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection; 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; UPS; 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; Blenker Companies, Inc.; CN; Ellis Construction Company, Inc.; Infinity Foods, Inc.; JHL Digital Direct; Marshfield Clinic – Stevens Point Center; Monogram Appetizers LLC; Muzzy Broadcasting; Regnier Consulting Group; Steel King Industries; and United Way of Portage County.

Named to United Way’s 100-Percent Club for companies with five or more employees reporting 100-percent participation were Ameriprise Financial; Big Brothers Big Sisters of Portage County; Cherek, Pucci & Quick, S.C.; Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin; DigiCOPY; General Beer-Northeast, Inc.; H&S Protection Systems, Inc.; Klismith Accounting & Tax Group SC; Mid-State Technical College; Old National Bancorp - Stevens Point Branch; Pineries Bank; Portage County Business Council; Regnier Consulting Group; River Cities Bank; Roosevelt Elementary; St. Stanislaus School; United Way of Portage County; and Welling Kitchen & Bath.

The Hofmeister/Okray family concluded their tenure as Campaign Drive Chairs by passing the leadership torch to the Blenker family of Blenker Companies, Inc. in Amherst – Peter Blenker and Pam Jewell; Jason and Jenny Blenker and their children, June and Jesse; Justin and Melissa Blenker and their child, Colin; and Kris and Angel Blenker. “We are very honored to be the 2017 drive chairs,” said Jason Blenker. “Many of you know us as home builders, structure builders throughout the community, but what we are really most proud of is being able to be builders of people and community.”