NORMAN — In a rousing victory celebration Tuesday afternoon, the United Way of Norman announced it raised more than $1.9 million for local social and human service agencies.
Doing the honors were United Way campaign chairs James Chappel and John Koons, announcing that through community fundraising, $1,902,039 was raised. The goal for this year’s campaign was $2.05 million.
“I’ve been working in the Norman community since 1997 when I came down here with OG&E. I work mainly with schools and social service agencies,” Koons said. “I’ve seen what great things go on in this community, the great people of these agencies that are giving of themselves to help others. It’s an incredible place to be.
“I never dreamed I would be in this position, and especially with James Chappel. It has been a tremendous experience.”
Koons gave credit to Norman United Way President Kristin Collins for all her work in the community.
“There is one person in this community that you should be so grateful to have. I don’t know of a finer individual that has more love for Norman and more passion for those in need than Kristin Collins and her entire staff,” Koons said.
Chappel said he enjoyed working on this year’s campaign.
“You don’t do a campaign like we have done in this community without the help that we’ve had. And we don’t do this kind of thing in a community unless the people of the community are giving people,” Chappel said. “We, as a people, do what it takes to take care of our own. What we are today are good neighbors.”
Collins admitted that this year’s campaign was a bit challenging.
“We are very thankful for this total. The only thing we could possibly add is it has been a challenging year and it took every person in this room being that good neighbor working so hard,” Collins said. “You all are wonderful, you are loving. These dollars will go to do great things in the spring.
“There has been a lot going on in the world and certainly in our state. We are just very proud of the way our state has responded to the people in need, certainly after the storms in May, and then to follow right on the heels of the storms and give so generously here to show that we care for one another, we feel like making over $1.9 million in our drive this year is really something to be proud of, and we feel very blessed.”
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