By STEVE EIGHINGER
Herald-Whig Staff Writer
Cheryl Waterman viewed Wednesday night's 76th United Way of Adams County annual meeting as a celebration.
And there was good reason.
The United Way raised a record $1.211 million in its annual campaign, the largest ever.
"We recognized in 2013 there would be some challenges for us, and the good news is the community responded very well," said Waterman, the nonprofit organization's executive director. "We're excited about heading into 2014."
Another cause for celebration was the naming of the Adams County Health Department as this year's Living United Award recipient.
"The Health Department deserves a lot of recognition from the community for doing so much on so many different levels," Waterman said. "They have become one of our key partners."
Public Administrator Jerrod Welch and about a dozen representatives from the Health Department were on hand to receive the award at the Town and Country Inn and Suites.
United Way volunteer leaders, representatives of partner organizations and community businesses and industries were present at the annual meeting.
"United Way has had another great year," United Way Board President Debbie Naught told the gathering. "Once again, the people of Adams County responded to the call to give, advocate and volunteer.
"Much of our effort in 2013 centered on working with community partners to launch three initiatives designed to advance education, income and health in Adams County. Additionally, we worked with our partner agencies to better collect data on the community impact resulting from United Way supported programs."
The United Way funds about two dozen agencies that provide services for residents in the region.
During the annual meeting, the following were elected by the membership to the board of directors: Jerry Gille of the Quincy Housing Authority, Jerry Jackson of Blessing Physician Services, Ronna Boyer of Blue Cross Blue Shield and Jim Benz of Benz Consulting.
Bonnie Scranton, Jim Broemmer and Janelle Van Hecke were honored as retiring board members. In their combined 17 years on the board, each of them served the organization in leadership roles.
Naught also highlighted the various volunteer groups that are responsible for the success of United Way. Thousands of hours of service are given each year by loaned executives, campaign division leaders and account managers, employee campaign coordinators, resource investment teams, Unmet Needs Committee Members, financial coaches, Promotions Committee Members and other individual volunteers and volunteer organizations.
This story was updated from the original post.