Shelby County’s United Way fundraising campaign kicks off

Published 11:44 am Thursday, October 4, 2018

PELHAM – Shelby County supporters recently celebrated the launch of the 2018 campaign to raise $3.2 million for United Way of Central Alabama at Summer Classics in Pelham.

The campaign is steered by, Laura R. Clarke, executive vice president of commercial banking with SYNOVUS Bank.

“Shelby County has been and continues to be an important part of the overall United Way campaign each year with great agencies doing great work, and strong supporters throughout the county,” said Clarke.

Earlier this month, General Campaign Chairman Alan Register, REGIONS Birmingham market executive, announced an overall campaign goal of $38 million for the programs and initiatives funded in the organization’s five-county service area.

Keynote kickoff speaker Michael D. Thompson, president and CEO of Thompson Tractor Company, talked about his 50 years of Shelby County experiences and his relationship with United Way.

He brought to mind his family’s farm the Square T later named Longridge. The establishment of Shoal Creek Country Club, his visits to many small towns as a sales representative for Thompson Tractor, the company’s investment in Southlake Village on Highway 17 and a new Cat Rental Store with over 58 employees.

“Your quality of life is high in part because of the work of United Way,” Thompson said. “They improve the lives of those less fortunate than us. I cannot imagine our community supporting all the charities who serve us without funding and governing arm known as United Way. These charities could not all properly be funded on their own. It could not happen.”

There are currently 19 agencies in Shelby County that receive a United Way allocation. There are an additional 33 United Way agencies outside of Shelby County’s borders still offer services to Shelby County residents.

“We have a lofty goal to reach but we should be able to get there with the support of the organizations here today and the leadership of the pacesetters in the county – Altec, Biohorizons, Pradco, and a new member of this elite group, Specification Rubber, who ran a great summer campaign.

United Way of Central Alabama serves Jefferson, Shelby, Walker, Blount and St. Clair counties by providing solutions for the most important needs in the community. Through our partner agencies and community initiatives, we improve lives and community conditions by building and mobilizing resources.

United Way fights for the health, education and financial stability of every person in every community. For more information visit