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June 12, 2014

Pitt honored for UW efforts

Honored for its most successful year yet, Pitt has won a Best of the Best Award from the United Way of Allegheny County for its 2013 United Way campaign. The award was announced June 5.

For the fourth straight year, Pitt surpassed its previous fundraising record, amassing $665,001 in pledges from 2,505 employees, including 705 new donors.

Co-chairs were G. Reynolds Clark, Office of the Chancellor, and Loren Roth, Department of Psychiatry. Anne Franks, Office of Institutional Advancement, was campaign manager.

“I know that the dollar amount is important … but the United Way doesn’t consider just the money,” Franks said regarding the decision to bestow the award. “I think what they’re really talking about is the quality of the campaign,” she added.

According to the United Way, Pitt was honored with the award for its fall campaign that “epitomized excellence in planning and organization, creativity, dedication and results.”

Some of those  creative fundraising efforts included University Library System staff collecting donations for bowls of homemade soup and Health Sciences faculty and students competing in a basketball tournament at the Petersen Events Center and raffling off balls signed by Pitt’s basketball coaches.

There was increased union participation this year, as members of SEIU Local 32BJ, Pittsburgh Building and Construction Trades, Operating Local 95, Teamsters 249 and the Pitt Police increased their giving by 12 percent in participation and 11 percent in dollars, according to the University.

Pitt also hosted one of the biggest United Way Day of Caring events in the county Sept. 24, with  360 faculty and staff members volunteering on various community projects.

—Alex Oltmanns