Economic trends in the lower 48 and low prices for Alaskan oil have caused concerns for non-profit organizations dependant upon "for profit" industry giving and the generosity of their employees to fund their community services. Joe Gallagher of Homer Electric Assoc. (HEA) has chaired the local United Way campaign for the last two years running and was overjoyed last week to receive a $62,000 check from ConocoPhillips, "We were aware of the economic situation at the beginning of our campaign last fall and it was a concern, but as usual the residents of the Kenai Peninsula have responded with extreme generosity and as we went through the Peninsula to talk with businesses and their employees it was incredible and you'd never have known that there was a recession when you saw the response of the residents to United Way and it just shows the quality of our community. Now the campaign isn't over yet and I can't tell you the final totals at this time, but I can tell you that people will be surprised and happy with the results of this year's campaign," said Gallagher.
Gallagher and United Way Executive Director, Tina Marie Herford, were very pleased to receive the big check for $62,000 at last weeks Kenai and Soldotna Chamber of Commerce meetings, "That brings the total pledges and corporate contributions from ConocoPhillips to over $98,000 this year, so we are very grateful and amazed to see the support we receive from corporations that have individuals that live and work in our community," said Herford.
Peter Micciche presented the check on behalf of ConocoPhillips and said that he too was happy about the commitment to the local community, "It's a challenging economy for the oil and gas industry and reductions have had to be made, but when we sat back and assessed the core needs of the communities where we operate we realized that the United Way is the organization that covers through its member agencies all those core needs which are the same needs our employees support as well, so we were very proud that we didn't have to make reductions in our United Way giving and also speaks highly of the generosity of our employees who live here in our community. ConocoPhillips is simply a collection of individuals that you work and play with here on the Peninsula represented by a collective logo whose business is investing their community," said Micciche. According to Gallagher this year's United Way campaign plans to announce their final results by the end of April. For more information or last minute contributions, call the United Way office at 283-9500.
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