Hopkins County United Way Campaign workers discuss pledges received to the fund drive at Tuesday's report meeting. The campaign has reached 62 percent of its $150,000 goal.

United Way reaches 62 percent of it's goal

By FAITH HUFFMAN, News-Telegram News Editor

Oct. 29, 2008 - Hopkins County United Way had collected more than 60 percent of its $150,000 goal for 17 local agencies as of Tuesday's campaign workers' report meeting, but HCUW officials are still optimistic about this year's fund drive.

The campaign has raised $93,551.66, or 62 percent of the goal, Campaign Chairman John Sellers said at Tuesday's meeting.

"We more than doubled from last week," he said.

Several industries who generously contribute each year have yet to turn in their donations, and those campaign workers who still have packets to collect said most businesses have indicated they expect to either meet or exceed their goals. Some which have yet to turn in donations include Sulphur Springs Independent School District, Hanna Construction, Flowserve, Jeld-Wen and OnCor.

A few campaign workers turned in donations from new contributors this year, with only a few reporting no participation or a contributor that didn't reach their goal.

Another campaign workers' report meeting is slated for 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 4, at Southwest Dairy Center. HCUW campaign chair John Sellers encourages all campaign workers to attend in anticipation of a celebration of the community's generosity and meeting the goal.

"Even if you're through with your packets, please come next Tuesday morning. We want you all to be part of the celebration of meeting the goal. I appreciate you, all your hard work."

Ocean Spray Cranberry donated $2,500, and the employees contributed another $6,132, which put the company tally way ahead of its goal.

City National Bank's contribution was not only twice the allocated goal, but was $1,000 more than last year. Overall, CNB donated $5,223, including donations from employees at the Yantis branch, according to Sellers.

Donna Wallace was happy to report that Hopkins County Memorial Hospital met its goal, contributing $8,290. The amount was a great surprise for Sellers, who'd gotten a report of $6,000 when he checked in with Wallace Monday. She was happy to report a few departments at HCMH turned in their tallies late Monday, raising the overall donation by more than $2,000.

Randal Voss All State was noted for its $500 contribution and NetData for a $500 donation. Joe Bob's and Super Handy stores, and physicians Somjai Tris and Dhawal R. Ram, each met their individual goal.

Comet Cleaners was recognized for giving triple the amount of last year's donation, while Pizza Inn doubled the goal amount.

Hopkins County Sheriff's Office exceeded its goal with a total contribution of $750.

Sellers reminded campaign workers of the Hamburger Cookout being sponsored Thursday by Alliance, City National and Guaranty Bond banks, in the parking lot downtown between Alliance and City National. A donation of at least $5 is requested for a burger, fixings and a drink, as well as an ice cream dessert provided by Southwest Dairy Center. Every cent raised during the fund-raiser will be donated to HCUW to help meet this year's campaign goal. Sellers invites the community come out, make a donation to a good cause and enjoy a burger and fellowship. Burgers will be available from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Thursday.

Sellers expressed appreciation to all campaign workers for their time and efforts. He also noted that serving as campaign president has been enjoyable and only strengthened his commitment to HCUW and appreciation for those who annually commit to the campaign.

"I'm about all out of speeches. We have North Hopkins school later today, and that's all," he said.

He also said the experience wasn't exactly what he was expecting.

"It's been a little different than I thought. You don't realize until you are personally involved how important numbers are each time.

"I dream about them," Sellers joked.

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