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United Way of Bemidji surpasses fundraising goal

BEMIDJI--More than 100 people gathered at the Bemidji Town and Country Club on Thursday evening to celebrate the success of United Way of Bemidji Area's 2018 Fall fundraising campaign for the community.

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Members of the Campaign Committee highlight the 2018 campaign reveal during the United Way of Bemidji Area's Celebration Dinner on Thursday evening. Pictured from left to right are Shannon Combs, Colleen Schulke, Sheila Dockendorf, Amanda Willis, Jeff Peltier, Leah Ophus and Brian Ophus. Submitted photo

BEMIDJI-More than 100 people gathered at the Bemidji Town and Country Club on Thursday evening to celebrate the success of United Way of Bemidji Area's 2018 Fall fundraising campaign for the community.

During the "Best of Bemidji" campaign celebration dinner, the United Way's communications committee: Amanda Willis, Jeff Peltier, Colleen Schulke, Sheila Dockendorf, Brian Ophus and Leah Ophus revealed the 2018 campaign total. Raising $421,176 in last year's campaign, United Way of Bemidji Area ended its campaign at $465,529.

The United Way's Campaign Cabinet, which is divided into divisions and chaired by volunteers, worked to help secure the final donations needed to reach the United Way's results of more than $85,000. Brian and Leah Ophus, campaign co-chairs, worked along with cabinet chairs: JoAnne Daniels, Business Division; Scott Kurtzweg, Commercial Division; and, Sheila Miller, Special Gifts.

United Way of Bemidji Area Executive Director Denae Alamano also shared information about the new events and campaigns that helped United Way its goal.

Dick and Jill Beardsley were announced as the United Way Campaign Chairs for 2019.

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The following awards also were presented at the dinner:

Director's Bronze Award:

Awarded to internal campaigns with a 50 percent or more employee participation rate and 3 percent increase in employee pledges over last year:

• Karvakko

• Headwaters Regional Development Commission

• Hope House

• Minnesota Public Radio

Director's Silver Award

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Awarded to internal campaigns with a 60 percent or more employee participation rate and 9 percent increase in employee pledges over last year:

• Widseth Smith Nolting

Director's Gold Award

Awarded to internal campaigns with a 70 percent or more employee participation rate and 9 percent increase in employee pledges over last year:

• First National Bank Bemidji

• Deerwood Bank

• Support within Reach

• Northwoods Caregivers

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• Boys and Girls Club of the Bemidji Area

Employee Participation Awards

More than $10,000 in employee gifts and fundraisers

• Bemidji Schools (ISD No. 31)

• Beltrami County

More than $20,000 in employee gifts and fundraisers

• Beltrami Electric

• First National Bank Bemidji

• Sanford Health Bemidji

President's Awards

Given to businesses and corporations with contributions of $1,000 or more.

Contributions of $1,000 to $4,999

• Evolve Creative

• Knife River

• Potlatch Deltic

• Security Bank USA

• AmeriPride Services

• Bemidji Brewing

• Bob Lowth Ford

• Dondelinger GM

• Forming Solutions

• Ken K Thompson

• Target

• Top Line Group LLC

• True North Health

• Wagner Plumbing

President's Plus Awards: $5,000 to $9,999

• Riverwood Bank

• Sanford Health

• Bar 209/Red Stu/Cabin Coffeehouse/Turtle River Chophouse

• Norbord

• Wells Fargo

President's Plus Plus Awards: More than $10,000

• First National Bank Bemidji

• Clifty Group

Other awards also were awarded during the evening:

• Best New Campaign 2018 Award was presented to Evolve Creative.

• The Executive Director's Award was given to Potlatch Deltic and Sanford Health.

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Related Topics: UNITED WAY OF BEMIDJI AREA
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