AUSTIN EDITION - United Way sets $785,000 goal

By Roxana Orellana

The United Way of Mower County has set $785,000 as its fund-raising goal this year.

The agency addresses local community needs with programs that focus on urgent needs, long-term solutions, building self-sufficiency and strengthening people and their families.

According to Executive Director Amy Baskin, this year the money is especially important because of all the cuts made to local agencies due to the state of the economy.


"We're pretty confident we're going to make it," said Baskin.

All money collected during the 12-week campaign stays in Mower County to help those living here, she said.

Last year, the organization exceeded its 2002 goal of $775,000, by finishing $10,000 ahead of the target. The 2002 goal was a 10.7 percent increase from the 2001 goal of $700,000.

Kris Johnson was chosen as this year's president. She will be assisted by new vice president Scott Aakre, treasurer Ann Christianson and secretary Renae Simonson.

Other 2003-2004 officers include: Jeff Kritzer, fund distribution chairman; Bill Snyder, leadership giving chairman; and Kelly Lady, campaign chairwoman. The campaign division leaders are Jeff Nuytten, Tim Fritz, Kelly Wadding and Trish Wiechmann.

"Tuesday will be our official kick-off. We get everyone fired up and ready to go," Baskin said. About 100 volunteers are expected to attend.

The campaign kick-off is at noon Tuesday at the Mower County Senior Center.

To volunteer, call (507) 437-2313.

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