United Way of Greater Niagara held its annual awards breakfast and campaign kickoff on Friday, Sept. 23, at Niagara Riverside Resort, located at 7001 Buffalo Ave., Niagara Falls. Its annual campaign also officially began.
This year’s campaign is co-chaired by Denise Abbott, CWA Local 1168 of DeGraff Medical Hospital; and Nick Mannicia of KeyBank; as well as honorary campaign co-chair Niagara County Sheriff Michael Filicetti.
The first donation of the campaign, made by the AFL/CIO Niagara Orleans Labor Council, was $24,400 – the proceeds of this year’s annual “Labor’s Night at the Races.” The event has raised $184,000 for United Way programs over the past 13 years.
In addition to serving as the official start of United Way’s annual campaign in across Niagara County and the Tonawandas, this event also honored local organizations and individuals who have helped to make a difference in the Greater Niagara Community over the past year. This year’s awards and honorees include the President’s Award to the AFL/CIO Niagara/Orleans Central Labor Council, the Horizon Award to KeyBank, the Shining Star Award to Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Western New York, the Service Cup Award to Youth Mentoring Services, the Norman Sinclair Humanitarian Award to Robert Kazeangin, the Joseph C. Weber III Think Positive Think United Way Award to Melissa Mazzarella, and the recently renamed AFL/CIO Russell Quarantello Community Services Award to Denise Abbott.
A press release stated, “At United Way of Greater Niagara, we believe that we live in a vibrant region where all individuals and families can achieve their potential through the support of our community. Our mission is to invest in the programs that focus on building education, income and financial stability, and health and wellness to deliver measurable results, improve the Greater Niagara Region today, and strengthen it for tomorrow.”