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‘Community came together’
United Way close to meeting campaign goal
breakfast 6 prater jd
United Way resource development director Michelle Prater jokes with the audience during the breakfast. - photo by Jim Dean
Golf tournament

The 13th annual Norman’s Landing Charity Golf Classic, which benefits the local United Way, is set for Monday at Polo Golf & Country Club. Registration begins at 10 a.m.
For more information, contact (770) 886-0100 or go online at
The gift of giving was celebrated during United Way of Forsyth County’s campaign celebration breakfast.

United Way board members and staff used the annual event, held Thursday at Windermere Golf Club, to pay tribute to the community for its ongoing support during current tough economic times.

While the 2009 campaign goal of $1,672,000 wasn’t completely met, about 87 percent has been raised, said Gary Davison, 2009 honorary campaign chairman.

“In a year of so many challenges, this community joined together and raised $1,453,000 to help their friends and neighbors,” he said. “With these funds, many lives are being touched. Kids are getting meals they need. Families are able to stay warm ... the entire Forsyth County community came together in a way that I can only describe as humbling.”

Michelle Prater, United Way staff member, presented numerous businesses and organizations with awards for their support during the campaign.

Among them were the top 10 contributors: UPS, Publix, Forsyth County Schools, AT&T, Kroger, Northside Hospital-Forsyth, Tyson Foods, Bank of America, Travelers Insurance and New York Life.

UPS has been the largest contributor for the past nine years. Prater said this year, the company raised $343,000.

Publix raised about $267,220, increasing its contribution by 13 percent over the 2008 campaign.

The public school system was recognized for raising 6 percent of the overall campaign, $83,946.

Bill Norman, owner of Norman’s Landing Restaurant, was honored for his small business’ continued support, which has generated nearly $350,000 over the past 13 years.

Prater added that the restaurant will hold its annual golf tournament in support of United Way on Monday.

“Bill [Norman] wanted me to tell you that there are 20 openings left [in the tournament],” she said.

In addition to recognizing contributors, United Way’s community improvement efforts over the past year were noted.

Caroline Croft, 2008 board president, said some of the highlights included providing care bags to new mothers at Northside Hospital-Forsyth and establishing a dental health program for in-need children.

The organization also made more than 1,600 referrals to various agencies through the 211 call service, held four nonprofit seminars and launched a new Web site,

Also during the breakfast, a new, local promotion video focusing on the United Way’s motto of “Live United” was unveiled, and the 2010 board officers were announced.

E-mail Crystal Ledford at