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Perham area well represented at United Way awards luncheon

Sanford Health, Otter Tail County, Lake Region Health Care and Otter Tail Power Company (representatives pictured) were recognized by United Way for holding the most successful employee campaigns of 2013. Combined, they donated more than $100,000. Submitted photo1 / 2
Representatives from Security State Bank, Great Plains Natural Gas, Service Food Market and Otter Tail Power Company accepted their Top Corporate Giving awards at the United Way of Otter Tail County’s Community Impact Luncheon on Jan. 15. Submitted photo2 / 2

People and businesses of the Perham area played an important role in United Way of Otter Tail County’s many charitable events and goodwill efforts in 2013. At the United Way’s Community Impact Luncheon, held in Fergus Falls on Jan. 15, volunteers and organizations from in and around Perham, as well as other communities throughout the county, were recognized for their contributions over the last year.

Community Heroes

Frank Wines, from New York Mills, Catherine Barner, from Ottertail, and Jill Shipman, from Perham, were all named Community Heroes. Sam Ross from Fargo and V.J. Block of Fergus Falls were also recognized.

Each of these volunteers contributed to the United Way by helping with assistance events, promoting fundraising campaigns and coordinating programs like Kinship and Prescription, said Mary Phillipe, the executive director of Otter Tail County’s United Way.

Mick Siems, of Fergus Falls, was named Otter Tail County’s Volunteer of the Year for 2013. Siems volunteered more than 100 hours last year while coordinating events and working on grants.

Mick Siems was named Volunteer of the Year for 2013. Submitted photo

Phillipe said Siems’s preparation work on the Fergus Falls Area Outdoors Show helped to complete the Mudpie Play Park.

Top employee campaigns

Sanford Health locations from around the county were recognized for conducting one of the largest employee fundraising campaigns in the area.

Other top campaigns were conducted by the employees of Pelican Rapids Public Schools, Otter Tail County, Lake Region Health Care and Otter Tail Power Company.

All totaled, these employee campaigns were able to raise more than $100,000 for the United Way and its programs.

Top corporate giving

Security State Bank, Great Plains Natural Gas, Otter Tail Corporation, Service Food Market, KLN Family Brands, and Otter Tail Power Company were recognized for their donations and contributions as a corporate entity to the United Way.

The combined total of these corporate donations was just over $30,000, said Christi Stoll, United Way’s local volunteer and event coordinator.

Most committed to improving community

The Committed to Improving Community Award was used to recognize companies and organizations that contributed to the United Way in ways beyond monetary donations.

Community Hero Frank Wines, of NY Mills, was described  as “a wonderful individual who gives so much to his community. Submitted

Bremer Bank in Perham and Service Food Market were recognized for their assistance with United Way events.

Perham Health was recognized for donating “one of the greatest gifts we got this year,” said Phillipe.

Perham Health made an in-kind donation of office space in its former hospital location. This enabled United Way to open a new satellite office in the eastern portion of the county.

The top community award was given to Calvary Lutheran Church in Perham. Phillipe said many United Way events are hosted within the church building, and Pastor Phil Holtan frequently donates his time and skills.

Other community awards were given to Walmart, Target, West Central Initiative, U.S. Bank, Lake Region Health Care, Bremer Bank in Fergus Falls and Otter Tail Power.

United Way of Otter Tail County is primarily a volunteer-led organization with a mission to meet the health and human care needs in local communities through a network of local agencies. Its mission is to improve lives in the county by mobilizing caring powers within communities.