Hannibal Courier-Post

Nomination deadline is Jan. 17 for United Way Evening of Philanthropy honorees

Robert Wealer accepts the award for Philanthropic Youth during the United Way of the Mark Twain Area's first Evening of Philanthropy event in 2019. The United Way is accepting nominations for three philanthropic individuals and one couple during their second Evening of Philanthropy event Saturday, March 14.
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Posted: Jan. 13, 2020 1:01 pm

HANNIBAL, Mo. | In March of 2019, United Way hosted their first annual Evening of Philanthropy event to honor individuals in the community who exemplify the values of United Way within their own lives. The United Way is hosting the 2nd Annual Evening of Philanthropy on Saturday, March 14 at the Star Theater in Downtown Hannibal and currently seeking individuals to honor.

Three individuals and one couple/family will be honored at the event. Videos showcasing the work of the honorees produced by WGEM will be premiered that evening.

Members of the community are invited to nominate someone who gives of their time, talent and treasures to causes bigger than themselves to be one of the evening's honorees by filling out the nomination form found athttps://unitedwaymta.org/events-1.

Last year's honorees were:

Life-Long Philanthropist: The late Ralph Griesbaum of Taylor, Mo. 

Griesbaum worked in his community to provide more meat to local food pantries through Project Protein. His efforts pumped over 350,000 pounds of meat into food pantries in Palmyra, Canton, Ewing and Hannibal. He personally raised nearly $20,000 for the program. His efforts in this program provided more than 1.4 million protein rich meals to local families in need.

Philanthropic Couple: Kevin and Denice Blew of Clarence, Mo. 

The Blews have parented over 100 children in the course of 35 years in their role as homeparents at Shiloh Christian Children's Ranch. Many of the children they parented were victims of abuse and neglect. Over the years, the Blews ensured children were empowered to achieve their potential by learning real life skills, learning to believe in themselves, and having a family to count on.

Philanthropic Individual: Kate Dougherty of Taylor, Mo.

Dougherty founded Down Country, a local non-profit, after her son, Elliot, was born with Down Syndrome. Down Country provides scholarship opportunities for local individuals to attend national and international conferences. At these conferences individuals learn best practices and bring them back to the tri-states to ensure individuals living life with disabilities in our community have what they need to succeed.

Philanthropic Youth: Robert Wealer of Hannibal

Yearly, Robert Wealer hosts a food drive in partnership with local businesses and organizations. He has collected over 30,000 food items for local food pantries to ensure individuals in the community have the basic necessities of life.

The evening is sponsored by Benson Financial and WGEM. Tickets can be purchased by calling the United Way Office at 573-221-2761 or at https://unitedwaymta.org/events-1.