Board of Directors

Gary Barta
Board Chair
Athletic Director, University of Iowa Athletics
My passion for the community comes from watching firsthand how willing people are to get involved. I love living and working in this community. People are genuine and care so deeply about others and making this a great place to live. I’m motivated to do what I can to help in some small way. I began working with United Way in the 1990’s. Through United Way's work, I have seen people from all walks of life come together to help others. Without United Way our community would be missing a valuable asset to help those in need. My belief that it makes our community better grows stronger every year. United Way's mission has been proven and tested over time. It works!

Gabe Aguirre
Community Investment Chair
General Manager, Learfield's Hawkeye Sports Properties
My first experience with the United Way was when I was first starting my career.  At that time I didn’t have extra funds available to donate so to pitch in I volunteered.  That experience allowed me to see firsthand the impact that the United Way made on a community.  I’ve been a United Way supporter ever since and I feel grateful for the opportunity to serve on the board.  It’s a small way to give back to a community that accepted me and my family with open arms when we arrived here in Iowa City in 2011.

Ben Clark
Resource Development Chair
Chief Operating Officer, IDx
As a transplant to Iowa City, I have been struck time and again by the profound sense of common humanity that characterizes this community.  The United Way acts on that spirit – mobilizing business, government, and social service sectors around a common vision for the well–being of those living in Johnson and Washington counties.  It is particularly gratifying to be part of an organization that holds itself to account by tracking success across defined, measurable, and ambitious goals.  With the belief that you truly do “get what you measure,” there is no more vital step to ensuring a great education, sustainable income, and good health are within the reach of ALL our neighbors.

Matt Degner
Assistant Superintendent, Iowa City Community School District
Throughout my life I have been involved in community service and invested in the work of philanthropic organizations.  Being an educator in the community I have firsthand knowledge of the great work done by The United Way.  It is truly an organization that addresses the needs of the community in many systematic ways.  I am happy to be part of an organization that does so much for so many others. 

Georgina Dodge
Chief Diversity Officer and Associate Vice President, Title IX Coordinator, University of Iowa
The United Way is vital to the well-being of the community and it is important that the University of Iowa actively participates. It is also important that inclusion remains central to the United Way mission moving forward so that diverse perspectives and voices contribute to community advancement. I have worked with the United Way for several years in different communities and value the contributions that the organization makes to all within its service area.

Sarah Fisher Gardial
Dean, Henry B. Tippie College of Business, University of Iowa
I grew up in a United Way home, and I spent the majority of my professional career at an institution which highly valued its link to the community through United Way.  In some ways, I have never known a time when giving back to the community, and especially doing so through United Way, hasn’t been a priority.  That is the personal part.  As a campus leader, I believe that our students, faculty, and staff are the beneficiaries of location.  Truly, we are blessed by a broader Johnson County community that both supports and values what happens on our campus.  In turn, I am keenly aware of the challenges and “costs” to a community where 30,000+ itinerant and often youthful citizens come and go each year.  To that end, I feel that the UI institution should give back in ways that support a healthy and prosperous community for us all.  United Way is a “one stop shop” that allows us to leverage our philanthropic dollars and our volunteer hours to the benefit of the community that surrounds and supports us on the campus.  As Henry Tippie would say, “I believe in payback for benefits received.”

Geoff Fruin
City Manager, City of Iowa City
I have been fortunate in my career to be involved with United Way in several different capacities. Over the years my appreciation for the impact that United Way has on a community has only grown stronger. The promotion of collaboration to effectively find solutions to our community’s most pressing problems is truly inspirational.  United Way represents a way in which every person in our community can join together for a common good.  The potential for positive change through this approach is boundless and I am excited to continue to help contribute to the mission through service on the Board of Directors.

Kelly Hayworth
City Administrator, City of Coralville

Patricia Heiden
Community Volunteer
Strategic Planning Chair
I first became involved with United Way of Johnson County in 2009 when I was asked to join the Campaign Cabinet.  I experienced first hand the passion and commitment to the values and mission of United Way.  I saw, through it tireless efforts, how it strengthens our community by improving and enhancing the quality of life of those in need. The work of United Way is critical to the well being of this community and because of its initiatives, partnerships and collaborations, every day, it makes a difference is the lives of those it serves.

Ken Kates
Treasurer & Internal Operations Chair
Chief Executive Officer-University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics and Associate Vice President-University of Iowa Health Care
I have always had a strong desire to help others and that aspiration had a direct influence on my decision to enter the health care field. There are limitless opportunities to make a difference outside of the workplace as well, and the United Way of Johnson and Washington Counties is exceptional example of how people working together can have a powerful impact on their communities. It is a pleasure to serve as a board member of this dedicated team of concerned and engaged citizens. As part of our collaborative efforts, I strive to brainstorm innovative strategies for lasting change.  I hope to build upon the stellar example set by Doug True as I assume his responsibilities as Treasurer and Internal Operations Chair of this outstanding non-profit organization.

LaShonda Kennedy
Community Volunteer
My passion for community service started at home with my folks and has grown into a lifelong mission to enhance the lives of and develop the potential of others.  The United Way is one of the best organizations to collaborate with to make positive impact in the our community.  I love how the United Way focuses on improving the lives of those who live here by researching and studying trends to determine what will have the greatest impact on our community and how community members can help develop the potential of those around them.

Todd Means
Senior Vice President, Iowa City
Market President, MidWestOne Bank
Born and raised in Iowa City, I’ve strived to look for ways to give back to the community that has offered so much to me and my family.   I’ve been a supporter of the United Way since graduating from the University of Iowa and beginning my career.  I was fortunate enough to be asked to join the Campaign Cabinet in 2015.  I enjoyed the opportunity to connect with the community and share the United Way story.  The reach that the United Way has throughout Johnson and Washington County, is a true testament to the quality of life enhancements being addressed in our community.

Mark Nolte
Vice Chair
President, Iowa City Area Development Group

Steve Olson
Community Volunteer
I have  been  involved   in  Foundation  philanthropy  much of my life and saw this opportunity as an extension of that  similar  cause, which serves one of my passions  in life  to "enhance people's lives." United Way is a terrific  organization that addresses the social service needs of the community with the end result  to improve the quality of life - I want to be a part of that mission.

Ed Raber
Director, Washington Economic Development Group
It has been very rewarding to work directly on community building and development as the economic development director in Washington County. It has been equally rewarding to work on numerous non-profit organization’s boards over the past two decades, and I bring that experience and engagement to United Way. Working United, we can coordinate and address the most important issues facing our communities.

Marten Roorda
CEO, ACT, Inc.
There is a big overlap between ACT’s mission and United Way’s mission to create measurable change that improves lives by focusing education, income and health. I think it all starts with education, because this can provide equal opportunity to all. In fact, ACT’s mission to help people achieve education and workplace success, also has a big overlap with my personal mission, to do everything I can to improve equity in our society. Being on the board of United Way I can not only advance my personal mission, but also make contributions to the local community in order to make it stronger.

Eadie Fawcett Weaver
Owner, Active Endeavors
I was born and raised in eastern Iowa and am grateful for the generosity and spirit of the people here. Iowa City has given so much to our family through the outstanding schools to the support of our local family business. I joined the United Way campaign cabinet four years to give back by raising money for area non-profit agencies. Through my involvement with United Way, I have heard and witnessed stories of hardship and help, of need and support, and want to be part of the solution. I want to do what I can to see our community continue to be a strong, vibrant, safe place to live and raise a family. United Way is the umbrella agency that can accomplish that.

Jon Weih
Director, Kirkwood Regional Center at the University of Iowa
My passion for the community sparked in 2001 through the Chamber Leadership Program and continues today through my work with Kirkwood Community College.  Support for the United Way has been an integral part of the faculty and staff at Kirkwood for many years.  My colleagues and I have witnessed directly the great things that can happen when a community wraps its arms around those in need and shows that all of us are valued and needed.  Community is what bonds us together and the United Way is part of the glue that holds us together.  That’s why I support the United Way.

Nancy Willis
Attorney, Willis & Willis

I am familiar with many of the organizations supported by United Way, and I have had the opportunity to sit on the allocations' committee.  It is humbling to be informed about the services provided by the excellent and dedicated staff persons with the limited amount of resources available to them.   United Way provides local support at a grass roots level within our immediate community.  Its work is therefore both visible and cost efficient.

Jane Drapeaux
Agency Representative
Executive Director, HACAP

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