2020 Annual Report


We started the year ready to launch the second phase of our Vision 2027 Strategic Plan, but quickly changed direction to address our communities’ needs. These changes have seismically altered how United Ways function today and into the future:

Indiana United Ways (IUW) and our members continued to pivot and reinvent ourselves during the unprecedented times of 2020.

  • The COVID-19 global pandemic that by the end of the year infected over 500,000 Hoosiers with over 7,500 dying. The virus shuttered thousands of businesses and schools for weeks at a time with many employers closing their doors permanently. Our 2020 ALICE Report showed that 37% of Indiana households were not making ends meet before the pandemic; additional research at the pandemic’s onset showed that at least another 11% of Hoosiers were at financial risk—almost half the state’s population. Untold numbers of institutions we all rely on such as childcares, nursing facilities and hospitals have been severely impacted. United Ways, along with the entire nonprofit field across Indiana, scrambled to provide necessary services despite losing face-to-face contact with clients, donors, partners, and even their own boards and staff due to state and local orders to distance ourselves and remain in safe quarantined spaces.
  • A series of national incidents that resulted in historic, large-scale and on-going civil protests denouncing police violence and systemic racism against people of color. Despite the pandemic, protests gripped major cities for weeks, and many for the first time, saw how the stain of racism continues to harm our communities and the need to address this today. The movement required United Ways to strengthen or recommit to their anti-racism stance and find impactful ways to work within their community differently. Listening, being curious and finding purposeful and meaningful strategies to address root causes that keeps racism in our “ground water” is work that will be before us into the future.

While the year 2020 itself became synonymous with statements like “a year like no other,” the disruptions created urgency and conditions for many United Ways in Indiana to embrace transformational change. Some were energized by increased community trust and relevance that allowed them to lead in new spaces, establish fresh collaborations, and engage donors differently—the moment they were made for. Others found themselves severely overwhelmed by their community’s social and economic challenges. Most experienced some degree of both.

Together with the 55 local United Ways and United Funds in Indiana, IUW found supports to navigate everything from unprecedented budget challenges to difficult community issues to an array of new relationships made possible through digital platforms. Based on our history of impact investing, IUW received a generous financial commitment from Lilly Endowment, Inc. (LEI) of $30MM into our COVID-19 Economic Relief Initiative (ERI) fund. The charge was to distribute these funds quickly and with positive impact to Hoosiers in every corner of the state. We stepped up to the challenge, working with local United Ways and their key community leaders to meet the needs of our most vulnerable Hoosiers and Indiana nonprofits. By the end of 2020, nearly $17,000,000 in ERI funds had been expended toward food, shelter, childcare, nonprofit infrastructure maintenance, and other critical local needs.

Each year, IUW’s Annual Report recounts a year of change. 2020 will no doubt live long and vividly in our memories for many reasons. Together with our members, we found the hope, vision and strength we needed to continue to fight for the health, education and financial stability of every Hoosier.

Ron Turpin
Board Chair
Maureen Noe

Who we are

Our Mission

We are the leading voice to advocate, engage, and partner with a strong United Way network and key stakeholders to advance human well-being throughout Indiana.

Our Vision

A future where Indiana’s United Ways thrive.

Our Credo

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

Our Guiding Principles

» IUW develops people and organizations.
» IUW is a leader within the United Way Network.
» IUW does the work that matters.
» We treat each other with respect and dignity.
» IUW operates with integrity, accountability and transparency.

Equity Statement

We recognize structural racism and other forms of oppression have contributed to persistent disparities which United Way seeks to dismantle. Our United Way network strives to engage community members, especially those whose voices have traditionally been marginalized. We work with residents and public and private partners to co-create solutions that ensure everyone has the resources, supports, opportunities and networks they need to thrive. We commit to leveraging all of our assets (convening, strategic investments, awareness building, advocacy) to create more equitable communities.

Thriving United Ways

IUW primarily measured its effectiveness in supporting Thriving United Ways in 2020.

Providing a space for United Ways to network and learn from each other through the Executive Roundtable has been a longtime signature program of IUW—one our members very much needed in 2020 to keep up with the myriad of changes and challenges for our network. The 2020 Executive Roundtable was chaired ably and wholeheartedly by Tonja Couch of Jackson County United Way, who selected the theme of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) for the year. Marveen Hart, Vice President of DEI for United Way Worldwide, kicked off the year with an introduction to DEI. Though each of the remaining three meetings was virtual due to the pandemic, that theme carried throughout as we considered our ALICE work, our board management, fundraising, and other critical United Way functions through the lens of diversity, equity and inclusion. In addition to the Executive Roundtable, IUW convened our membership for weekly calls to support early adjustment to the pandemic, the announcement of the Covid-19 ERI funds, managing community recovery efforts, and more. Weekly “Wine Down” networking sessions facilitated by IUW helped our United Way executives share, manage stress and feel supported during the first couple of months of the pandemic and initial protests around systemic racism. Unfortunately, the annual Rejuvenation Retreat for executives scheduled for November was postponed as coronavirus cases were on the rise.

Coaching LUWs on Modern United Way Best Practices was an amorphous and organic process. Due to the challenges of the year, we paused Board Training on Modern United Way after one training and pivoted to make the training available digitally, on-demand for 2021. IUW convened two training and discussion sessions on maintaining budget continuity and provided tools we designed for members to support financial solvency. We also made coaching available to all United Ways, regardless of membership tier, through regular meetings of the fundraising and impact peer groups; provided technical assistance to qualify for COVID-19 ERI funds; and introduced the United Way Equity Toolkit and Framework through IUW’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) book club, which took on Robin DiAngelo’s White Fragility.

Supporting collaborations and mergers in efforts to strengthen local United Ways’ capacity to better serve and engage within their communities, IUW staff provided tools, guidance, organizational advice, and documented the work involved between United Ways and United Funds seeking to join forces. As a result of the trust and consensus building, six local United Way boards voted to merge or to dissolve and have their county served by a neighbor in 2020. In addition, three LUW boards voted to merge into a regional United Way serving eight counties (public launch in 2021). Positioning toward 2021, two United Funds continue in good faith merger discussions with neighboring United Ways and another two United Way Boards are moving toward a consolidation. IUW also facilitated discussions around realigned service delivery areas (through the reassignment of fundraising zip codes) with neighboring LUWs.

Aligning LUW efforts in impact takes a look at community indicators from both the state and local perspectives. In 2020, local United Ways expanded their ability to report into UWW’s Global Results Framework, raising the total from 12 in 2019 to 15 in 2020.

In May, IUW launched the 2020 ALICE Report providing county-specific data to help United Ways respond in evidence-based ways to the pandemic. IUW also partnered with the Indiana University O’Neill School in July to produce the Indiana COVID-19 Nonprofit Study informed by 525 Indiana nonprofits.

As we all found unique ways to partner during the pandemic, IUW nurtured new strategic relationships within state government focusing on topics like childcare, substance misuse prevention, food insecurity and housing. Despite all the good planning, collaboration and resources invested, tens of thousands of Hoosier households remain at risk of eviction due to job loss and other pandemic-related economic challenges. IUW, invited by Prosperity Indiana, led a significant multi-sector statewide effort to study the issue and make collective recommendations to mitigate a potential “eviction tsunami.”

Efficiently administering grant dollars to LUWs is an ongoing strength of IUW. In 2020, we considerably increased our volume and speed by adding a 90 day grant process to issue pro-rated awards to our members from the $30 million COVID-19 Economic Relief Initiative (ERI) so graciously gifted by the Lilly Endowment, Inc. With support from incredible volunteer committees, we awarded 55 ERI grants serving every county Indiana (except those served by United Way of Central Indiana, which received its own grants from LEI) and 12 UnitedIN20 Matching Grants. Automation became critical during these unprecedented times, and our new online grants portal made digital applications, volunteer reviews, awards and reporting more efficient and user-friendly than ever before.

Thriving United Ways by the numbers


The number of COVID-19 specific meetings IUW convened virtually in 2020 to support local United Way execs and board members.
The number of COVID-19 specific meetings IUW convened virtually in 2020 to support local United Way execs and board members.


The proportion of $30 million in COVID-19 Economic Relief Initiative dollars generously donated to IUW by Lilly Endowment, Inc. that IUW had awarded to LUWs within a month of learning we were to receive the grant.


The number of United Ways who participated in regular virtual meetings for Resource Development and/or Community Impact staff.

Shared services provider for the network

IUW remained an engaged network partner and encouraged its Indiana Membership to find constructive ways to lean into the work ahead of us.

IUW measured its success as a Shared Services provider in the following ways in 2020:

Supporting local United Way’s backroom operations remained a focus for IUW, and UniFi Cohort meetings began as an extended way to reach into the network to share best practice ideas, offer joint training opportunities and listen for quality improvement suggestions. Over the year, UniFi Solutions automated donor record system management and offered a variety of online giving tools to its 54 clients.

To support local United Ways cyber security training needs and protection, clients and members joined IUW to update practices and learn about new procedures. Keeping our donor records secure and managed remains a top priority for United Ways across the state!

Transitioning both Digital Services (DS) and UniFi Solutions programs into best in class and financially solvent programs had an added challenge in 2020 as United Way Worldwide revised their dues structure and added some backroom support within the increase in dues. These significant changes meant IUW’s programming needed to re-imagine how they fit into the ecosystem and determine the right pricing structure to for local United Ways and IUW.

To improve services, the business model, and identify potential clients, IUW instituted sprint teams in late 2020. These teams, which will continue to collaborate in 2021, reflect IUW’s commitment to continuous improvement and its own organizational development.

IUW worked to offer more coaching and “come along side you” professional expertise to some clients while remaining an outsourcing partner for others. In 2020, we began to offer more strategic products, such as CFO Lite to help clients more fully utilize their financial reports and services and serving as an early Digital Services implementation partner to United Ways who want to be able to use Salesforce Marketing Cloud before they are necessarily staffed for it.
Going forward, IUW remains focused on working collaboratively to find solutions that are cross functional, continue to add network value, and leverages the Modern United Way framework. Finding and supporting more holistic approaches that blend fundraising, donor data, digital marketing, processing, and accounting practices are priorities into 2021.

Actively recruiting new clients for Shared Services requires discernment about our own capacity to serve new clients and a solid understanding within the UW network about our offerings. UniFi’s capacity for new clients will increase as more process improvements take hold and we become clearer about the characteristics of, and can reach out to, our target market. UniFi had a net gain of three clients in 2020 and a pipeline of 4 Full-Service prospects for 2021. Digital Services ended 2020 with a slight excess of capacity, and a pipeline of larger United Way prospects outside Indiana interested in joining in 2021. Digital Services lost four clients but compensated by bringing on its first large United Way outside of Indiana.

IUW is grateful for the trust and partnership local United Ways put into our Shared Services programming. Quality improvement and customer satisfaction is a journey that IUW is committed to and is forming a client user group to ensure fluid communication and best practices are implemented.

Partnering with UWW and our network to take on bold challenges was an energizing and at times not always clear prospect for IUW. Shortly before the end of 2019, UWW announced a dues increase from 1% to 2% current year support (CYS) for the United Way network with a promise to be able to access digital/technology based tools and shared services to fuel the Modern United Way transformation at scale. Due to the quick roll out and pandemic challenges, timelines and specific program details were communicated later in 2020.

IUW remained an engaged network partner and encouraged its Indiana Membership to find constructive ways to lean into the work ahead of us. IUW’s lead staff actively engaged in UWW’s National Partnership Group Steering Committee, participated in staff development programs, and actively contributed in the DEI and Resource Development committees to be part of a network solution. Being seen as a thought partner and network advocate, IUW brokered three significant network outcomes:

  • We became a reseller of Salesforce Philanthropy Cloud and a certified Workplace Administrator of the product, allowing us to initiate and process SPC campaigns for United Ways.
  • Redesigning the Digital Marketing Anchor Model allowed UWW to refer Metro 1 and 2 United Ways (largest population groups) to us for as part of our new business pipeline.
  • We entered a two-year contract to provide coaching for two United Ways outside Indiana that are in a UWW rapid Modern United Way Transformation Pilot.

Operational Excellence

The United Way Worldwide network officially voted to have anti-racism practices incorporated into their membership standards.

IUW measured its operational success in 2020 against the following criteria:

Implementing employee-driven enhancements to our working conditions, benefits and culture was a joint effort between a newly commissioned employee-led Beta Team, (charged to surface ideas, concerns and offer best practice ideas), and a reconstituted Human Resources Board Committee with the shared goal to position IUW as an Employer of Choice. Maintaining a balance between aspiration, productivity, and financial constraints, a revised Employee Handbook was rolled out in the fall. Key revisions included implementing a remote work policy, generous paid parental leave program, Paid Time Off program, and a traditional 40-hour workweek.

In addition, to support individual staff growth, cross-functional thinking and planning, and developing our capacity to engage in rapid but durable quality and process improvement, IUW created a new position of Vice President of Organizational Development who works across all IUW teams to help create increased customer value, break down traditional silos in our work, and ensure we have the knowledge and develop the habits to engage in continuous improvement. As IUW staff grow in our responsiveness to what United Ways need – and as our cultural competence and ability to leverage processes, people, and technologies strengthen – so, too, will the network grow and strengthen.

Developing and mobilizing our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) principles and practices was embedded into all of IUW’s work and formalized when the Board adopted a comprehensive DEI Plan in September. The plan focuses on three tiers of growth: individual, organizational, and (Indiana) network. To see the plan to fruition, IUW will offer a balance of training and development opportunities for IUW and LUW staffs and Boards continued into 2021.

IUW along with many other organizations across the nation were called to elevate our DEI work, and the United Way Worldwide network officially voted to have anti-racism practices incorporated into their membership standards. IUW’s intentionally offered an introductory anti-racism training session to staff and Board; discussion groups centered on the book White Fragility; and socialized DEI topics at all four Members Executive Roundtables.

To intentionally lift up business decisions that further DEI goals, IUW publicized and distributed the State of Indiana’s Women and Minority Business Owner list and made a multitude of DEI resources available on its website.

Achieving fiscal solvency and strengthening internal financial systems was a critical priority for IUW in 2020 and will remain so; adding a highly qualified Chief Financial Officer midway through the year was a key tactic toward achieving that priority. Before that, our Interim CFO and Board Treasurer worked to enroll in the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), a forgivable loan made available through the Federal government specifically for pandemic relief. The PPP offset lost income from IUW’s investments.

Continuing with the theme of organizational excellence, the following best practices were put into place: Finance Committee adopted an updated Finance Manual with best practices, simplified accounting codes, and regular GAAP training provided for all Accounting staff. On the revenue side, in 2020 IUW secured new revenue streams in grants administration, Shared Services, and contracts for specialized expertise.

IUW Financials


Total: $3,304,000


Total: $3,167,000
Note: Indiana United Ways (IUW) projects to end the year with expenses ($3,167,000) to be under the revenue ($3,304,000). The audited financial statements will be available on IUW.org once the 2021 Audit is complete. (Spring 2021)

Volunteer Leadership at Indiana United Ways

Officers of the Board of Directors

Ronald Turpin
Allen County | Chair | Executive Committee Chair | Nomination Committee Chair | IND FUND/ERI Committee Chair
“Indiana United Ways owes a debt of gratitude to Ron Turpin for serving an unprecedented four terms as Chair of the Board of Directors. His commitment, counsel, willingness to roll up his sleeves, and effective leadership skills gave IUW staff the strength to undertake many deep organizational changes in his tenure”.
—Maureen Noe, President/CEO
Pam Ottersbach
Metro | Vice Chair
Karen Pipes
At-Large, Wayne County | Secretary | Human Resources Committee Vice Chair
Christopher Caldwell
At-Large, Delaware County | Treasurer | Finance Committee Chair

Board of Directors

Joe Bradley At-Large, Jackson County | Grants Committee Chair
Tonja Couch Jackson County
Angie Nelson Deuitch LaPorte County
Lucia A. Downton Central Indiana | Shared Services Committee Chair
Jim Dworkin At-Large, Porter County
Shawn Ellis At-Large, Whitley County | Learning and Performance Committee Chair
Carl Ellison At-Large, Marion County
Geoff Gailey Central Indiana | Human Resources Chair
Reverend Dr. Sondra Gentry At-Large, Marion County
Kirk Klabunde At-Large, Madison County
Dave Koester At-Large, Lake County
Barry Lessow At-Large, Monroe County
Ashley Martin Elkhart & LaGrange Counties
Thomas Paulson At-Large, Marion County
Marshall Sanders At-Large, Huntington County
Laura Sheets Howard & Tipton Counties
Nancy Vaughan Madison County | Public Policy Committee Chair
Brent Wake At-Large, Marion County
Jonathan Weinzapfel Southwestern Indiana
Stephanie Withered At-Large, Jefferson County


Robert Best Morgan Stanley
Larry Cassagne Indiana Department of Homeland Security
Jane Crady Catholic Charities
Allison Curts UMCOR
Holly Davis Indiana Philanthropy Alliance
Abby Desboro Wabash Valley
Chris Gibson The Corydon Group
Amy Haacker Indiana Philanthropy Alliance
Nicky Harrison The Corydon Group
Luzada Hayes Southwestern Indiana
Duane Hoak Madison County
Abby Hostetler Purdue University/INVOAD
Denise King Delaware, Henry & Randolph
John Lyter ARC, Retired
Bob McIntosh Metro
Corbin Miller Insight Accounting Group
Waldo Mikels-Carrasco St. Joseph County, Indiana Health Information Exchange
Sandy Moulton The Corydon Group
Sarah Nahmias Decatur County
John Peirce Allen County
Schiela Peña Regions Bank
Morgan Perrill The Corydon Group
Marci Price ACT
Chad Priest American Red Cross
Charles Preston Lilly Endowment, Inc.
Ron Silverman Creative Financial Planning Advisors
Dave Sheets Stripes Marketing
Denny Smith Southern Baptist Disaster Relief
Matt Rayburn Indiana Housing & Community Development Authority
Joyce Rogers IU Foundation
Anne Valentine Central Indiana

Castaldi Award

Dave Koester, Lake Area resident, received the 2020 Castaldi Award due to his generosity, servant leadership, and dedication to Indiana United Ways as a highly engaged Board Member since 2015. His role as the UniFi Solutions Committee Chair was pivotal in transforming UniFi Solutions from a transactional focused program into a customer driven network solution since 2016. His belief in IUW’s staff talents and United Ways mission along with his process improvement aptitudes provided the expertise that achieved improved customer ratings, stronger collaborations and notable growth opportunities benefiting more than 54 United Ways throughout Indiana and the country.

Our United Way/Fund members

IUW Shared Services Clients

Digital Services

Unifi Clients

Our Professional Team


Henry Ayeni
Caroline Bailey
Melanie Bernas
Briann Black
Ceceily Brickley
Emily Campbell
Jontrese Craig
Amanda Davis
Brogan Drumm
Natalie Evans
Jerren Fair
Seth Lucas-Falk
Brenda Ferry
Kathryn Habecker
Joe Johnson
Cathy Martinez
Rachel Mahurin
Shana Ngo
Maureen Noe
Charlie Pride
Lindsey Robinson
Laura Rutter
Rachel Scott
Tonja Stokes
Nicole Trotter
Rita Wootton
Sue Odom

Americorps Members

Brooke Bagwell
Savannah Patterson
Lynn Saylor
Sydney Schieffer


Nick White
Molly McLaughlin
Will Brown

Consultants / Contract Team Members

Sue Back
Jordan Gram
Deirdre Honner
Bea Northcott
Mary Parham