For the second time in the past year, United Way of Salt Lake (UWSL) hosted United Way executives from across the country for a sold-out Center of Excellence (COE). The purpose of the COE was to train others from the United Way system in the innovative business model that UWSL uses to accomplish its mission.
Held over two days earlier this month, the curriculum included an overview of UWSL’s transformation to a Collective Impact United Way, an in-depth discussion of our Collective Impact framework and business plan, as well as an comprehensive overview of our very successful major gifts campaign, the Changing the Odds Campaign, and how that fund-raising model translates into success in the workplace. The sessions were conducted by Rebecca Dutson, Executive Vice President and Chief Development Officer; Bill Crim, Senior Vice President of Collective Impact and Public Policy; Agnes Chiao, Vice President of Collective Impact; Jerilyn Stowe, Vice President of Marketing and Communications; as well as myself.
Martin Bates, Superintendent of the Granite School District, talked to the group about the value of the strong partnership that has been developed between UWSL and the Granite School District. He discussed the life-changing benefits that such a partnership brings to his schools, and to the students who lack opportunity who attend school in the Granite District.
Participants were treated to a panel discussion featuring several of our most committed and articulate donors, including Allen Alexander, Chairman and CEO of Savage; Kathie Miller, Trustee of The Mark and Kathie Miller Foundation; Todd Savage, Executive Vice President, Savage; and Scott Ulbrich, Financial Advisor at R. W. Baird and Co., and trustee of a large local foundation. Those in attendance were amazed at how well-versed and passionate our donors are regarding the work UWSL is doing in our Neighborhood Centers and Community Schools.
Also on the agenda was a site visit to the Granite High-quality Preschool Program – the Woodrow Wilson Elementary Community School and Granite Park Junior High Community School. Participants got to see the work of UWSL first-hand and heard from our partners at the schools about the great things that are happening because of United Way of Salt Lake’s work in these schools.
Participants in the Center of Excellence left Salt Lake City inspired and committed to making similar changes in their own communities.