United Way recognizes locals for Campaign involvement

United Way of Johnson County campaign Chairmen Tolin Navarrete, left, presents the 2013 President Award to Zeb Averhoff.



A small crowd gathered Tuesday night in a room at the Cleburne Conference Center to celebrate the 2013 campaign year of United Way of Johnson County.

UW 2013 President Zeb Averhoff thanked those present for taking the time to be there to recognize organizations and businesses for their involvement in the year's campaign.

Averhoff presented the campaign chairman award to campaign Chairman Tolin Navarrete, who was thankful but said he felt others needed to be recognized for this award also.

"I just wanted to thank Mr. Averhoff," Navarrete said. "He stepped up when I got terribly busy this year unexpectedly, he was able to help out with this campaign. I wanted to thank you first and foremost, thanks a lot for all your help ... and for this award that I don't think I rightfully deserve."

Navarrete went over some campaign highlights of 2013 and expressed a bit of disappointment.

"For the first since 2007 we did not reached our goal," Navarrete said. "Of course everyone in Johnson County knows what 2007 brought in, oil and gas money. So that was a big hit, brought us way up and it did bring us to a level where we are at now. Even though we didn't reach our goal

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we still managed to pull in about over $441,000."

Navarrete presented several awards including the campaign top contributors for each division. Those were: education, Cleburne ISD; major firm, HE- B Grocery; enterprise, Stewarts RV Park; oil and gas, Devon Energy; professional, Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Cleburne; financial, First Financial Bank; county government, Johnson County Government; national firm, Luminant; agency, Family Crisis Center; and metropolitan, Sears Family Foundation.

Day of Caring project coordinator Jamie Dugger presented the presenting sponsorship award to the Member Credit Union for help in sponsoring the annual event.

"[Day of Caring] is something that is so near and dear to my heart," she said. "That was the first contact I've ever made with United Way and it was with my kids. It's a program that really allows the community to see the need that there are and to find out all about the agencies that we have that are helping people and give the community a chance to help them too."

Many of the recipients were not in attendance to receive their certificate or plaques but Navarrete said that didn't matter.

"Even if they couldn't make it, we know they back us up and we have their support," he said.

Navarrete said a lot of them don't do it for the recognition but UW wants to recognize everyone involved for all the work they do.

"Without them we wouldn't be able to do what we do and we are just so grateful," he said.

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