United Way of King County gave City of Bellevue staff a Spirit of Caring award Tuesday, for raising close to $55,000 for local charities. Specifically, Kathie Gillis in the Development Services Department and Julie Ellenhorn in the Planning and Community Development Department shared the Campaign Coordinator of the Year award for organizing the staff Giving Campaign.
Staff at the city raise money for United Way of King County and four other umbrella charity organizations each year through an annual Giving Campaign. Coordination of the effort is rotated among the city's 15 departments. In addition to United Way of King County, donations go to the Bellevue Human Services Fund, the Bellevue Police Benevolent Association, the Coalition for Charitable Choice, and the Bellevue Firefighter Community Support Foundation.
In 2012, the city raised about $51,000 in payroll contributions and checks to United Way and other local charities. An additional $4,000 was raised through an online auction, bake sales and other events put on by other departments.
A food drive produced 3,800 pounds of food for Hopelink, its largest single donation of the year.
"Many heartfelt congratulations to this year's Spirit of Caring Celebration award winners," United Way said in an online release. "They are the best of the best in creating change and living united, and United Way is proud to be their partner in building a thriving community."
United Way Campaign Co-Chair Dan Wilson spoke at Bellevue's kickoff event. At the end of the event, Mark Tullis, a plumbing inspector and die-hard baseball fan, asked Wilson to sign Tallis' 100-year-old catcher's mitt.
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