"I credit our volunteers with this achievement," Martin said. "And we have a very generous community."
The campaign raised $1,610,089, about 87 percent of the $1.85 million goal, despite a couple of setbacks, he said.
When the campaign began last fall it was $150,000 in the hole, said Kathleen Hall, United Way executive director.
"Two companies - the former First Urban Fiber and Honeywell - closed," eliminating anticipated proceeds from two employee campaigns and corporate donations, Hall said.
The campaign also lost contributions from the Washington County Commissioners, Fort Ritchie and the Maryland Charities campaign, Hall said.
The County Commissioners used to give the United Way an annual contribution of $100,000, but gave nothing this year.
United Way volunteers, through their energy and dedication, managed to make up for those losses, and raised $10,000 more than was raised in last year's drive, said Rich Gagliardi, 1997 campaign chairman.
The projected allocations to United Way agencies total $1,195,018 this year.
The 1996 campaign goal was $1.8 million, and $1.6 million, just over 86 percent of the goal, was raised.
Maureen Theriault, community relations director, said the 1997 drive got a boost from 32 new employee campaigns.
There were 97 new corporate gifts, and 33 companies increased the size of their corporate gifts, Theriault said.
Bob Barnhart of Mack Trucks will head the 1998 campaign. He's hoping he gets the same support that Gagliardi, an Allegheny Power executive, received in 1997.
"What sticks in my mind about the 1997 campaign is how the volunteers pulled together to fix the crisis we had in the small business division," Barnhart said, referring to several unexpected setbacks.
Gagliardi said one big push in the next campaign will be to get to those industries and companies in Washington County that do not conduct in-house campaigns.
United Way lauds donors
Following are some statistics from the United Way of Washington County's 1997 campaign, which raised a record $1.61 million:
- Gold awards for employee contributions over $65 were presented to 45 companies.
- Silver awards for employee contributions $50 to $64 were earned by 12 companies.
- Bronze awards for employee contributions $25 to $49 went to 35 companies.
- Business Leader Award for employee/corporate increase of 5 percent was given to 20 companies.
- Garden State Tanning in Williamsport won the campaign chairman's award for doubling its employee contribution.
- Spirit awards given for extra effort went to Dynamark, F&M Bank and Trust, Garden State Tanning, Hoffman Automotives, Sam's Club, Washington County Hospital; Sgts. Doug Mullendore and Richard Blair of the Washington County Sheriff's Department; and Lettie Palmer, Sharrett.
- Honor roll recipients who exceeded last year's contributions included Sam's Club, 1,238 percent; Wal-Mart, 486 percent; Hickory Elementary School, 267 percent; Hospice of Washington County, 266 percent; and Smithsburg High School, 240 percent.