LIVE UNITED Celebration Held, GIVE & WIN Sweepstakes Winners Announced

At an event reignited for the first time since before the pandemic, United Way recognized its corporate supporters, donors, volunteers and community partners at its LIVE UNITED Celebration, held at the Eclipse Center in Beloit.
United Way logo

Event showcases how United Way is ‘a driving force for good’

(BLACKHAWK REGION) – At an event reignited for the first time since before the pandemic, United Way recognized its corporate supporters, donors, volunteers and community partners at its LIVE UNITED Celebration, held at the Eclipse Center in Beloit.

United Way Blackhawk Region President & CEO Mary Fanning-Penny welcomed attendees by saying, “Along with many philanthropic partners, United Way is a driving force for good.” The breakfast event’s theme centered on United Way’s efforts to drive positive change, a creative nod to top prize in the 10th anniversary GIVE & WIN Sweepstakes – a 2022 Jeep Renegade Latitude.

Chair of United Way Blackhawk Region’s Board of Directors, Derek Hahn, announced early in the program, “I’m thrilled to report, we have exceeded our $2 million-dollar goal for the 2022 community campaign.” Hahn extended gratitude to all the individuals and organizations that pledged financial support and added, “per usual, United Way will not take our foot off the gas in the 2023 campaign.”

Campaign awards presented

Included in the recognition was the Cornerstone Award presented to workplace campaigns that exceeded $100,000 in employee pledges. Receiving the Cornerstone Award this year are ABC Supply Co. Inc., Kerry, and Regal Rexnord.

Fanning Excavating Inc. received the Emerging Campaign Award, in recognition for creating an atmosphere of support for United Way evidenced by a 100 percent participation in a first-time employee campaign. Employees’ pledges were also generously matched dollar for dollar by the company.

Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Rock County, a United Way funded partner, was honored with the Excellence in Advocacy Award.

“CASA of Rock County is determined to create positive change in the way children are represented in the child welfare process,” said Fanning-Penny. “While CASA is a lean team of five, you would not want to underestimate their passion, resourcefulness, or grit.”

Chief Human Resources Officer at Fairbanks Morse Defense and board member for United Way Blackhawk Region, Tim Oswald, was honored with the Geraldine Hedberg Volunteer of the Year Award.

Fanning-Penny described Oswald as, “a problem solver, hand raiser, and a game changer. His analytical mindset and strategic leadership style have quickly made him a trusted advisor and responsible steward of our region’s generosity.”

The annual LIVE UNITED Award, presented to a company that displays exceptional support for United Way through its workplace campaign, as well as volunteerism, was presented to SSI Technologies LLC.

United Way Blackhawk Region Board member Tom Ramsden stated, “SSI Technologies achieved its highest workplace campaign to date in the 2022 campaign. In addition to supporting United Way financially, members of the SSI Technologies team also volunteer for United Way’s mission by participating in the Day of Caring and as part of the critically important Campaign Cabinet.”

Sweepstakes winners announced

The highpoint of the of the event, was the culmination of the GIVE & WIN Sweepstakes, launched in 2022 to help commemorate the 10th anniversary of the unification of the former Stateline United Way and United Way of North Rock County. United Way officials consider the innovative effort a success, reporting 98 workplace campaigns increased results over 2021 and 1,142 people qualified for the top prize meaning their gift was a new or increased pledge of $100 or more.

In accordance with the Sweepstakes’ official rules, winners of the sweepstakes prizes were drawn randomly with Baker Tilly, an independent auditing firm and announced at the event. Prize descriptions, sponsor recognition, and official rules remain online at

Prize winners were announced as follows: Green Bay Packers fan experience winner is Katherine Foss. Sundara Spa Day winner is Tyler Olson. Family four pack of Bicycles winner is Tara Foster. Badger Basketball Date Night winner is Carson Pingel. Celebrate Beloit package winner is Erica Schwartz. Beloit Sky Carp package winner is Heather DiStefano.

Additionally, three finalists were announced for the $5,000 prize sponsored by Fairbanks Morse Defense. Finalists for the $5,000 prize, invited to attend the event though need not be present to win, included: Amy Meier, a 5th grade teacher in the Rockton School District; Adan Mendoza, an employee at Dollar General; and Dale Miller, an employee at Seneca Foods.

Finalists for the top prize, a 2022 Jeep Renegade Latitude sponsored by an anonymous corporate partner with in-kind support from Burtness, were announced. The top prize finalists, invited to attend though need not be present to win, included: Mallory Blazer, an employee at Kerry; Arlo Hartley, an employee at Beloit Health System; and Ashlie Justice, an Associated Bank employee.

A CPA from Baker Tilly, verified proceedings, randomly selected from a clear tumbler, opened and announced live, the winner for each.

Nearly 250 United Way benefactors attended the LIVE UNITED Celebration, which included a performance by local band, Nick & Friends comprised of musicians: Allison McCawley, Nick Dimassis, Greg Gerard, Michael Nattesheim, and Johnny Wettnebel.

Meet our campaign award winners

All of the individuals and organizations honored at the event and listed in United Way’s Annual Report help to drive positive change in the Blackhawk Region. To learn more, visit

About Fanning Excavating Inc.

Fanning Excavating Inc., has been family-owned and operated since 1946. Co-owners Don and Roger Fanning take great pride in excellent workmanship and the ability to deliver outstanding results. Launching their inaugural United Way campaign in 2022, the Fanning Excavating team delivered impressive results earning UWBR’s Gold Award and 100% Participation Award. Employees’ pledges were also generously matched dollar-for-dollar by the company.

About CASA of Rock County

Executive Director Sandy Johnson’s vision for CASA has resulted in its growth and expanded ability to serve children in foster care. Most of the children served are less than 10 years old and under court jurisdiction due to abuse and/or neglect from parents whose mental health disorders and/or substance misuse interfere with their ability to parent and provide a safe environment.  In 2016, CASA served 35 children. By 2022, that number rose to 128.

About Tim Oswald

As Fairbanks Morse Defense (FMD) Chief Human Resource Officer, Tim, with the full support of CEO George Whittier, has helped revitalize Fairbanks Morse Defense’s United Way campaign. In addition to his United Way volunteerism, Oswald currently serves as Vice Chair for the Greater Beloit Economic Development Corporation. He has also spent considerable time volunteering as a youth basketball and baseball coach, former President of Friends of the Riverfront, and as an assistant coach for Parkview boys’ basketball.

About SSI Technologies LLC

SSI Technologies, LLC is a forward-thinking company with community as one of its core values. A loyal United Way partner, SSI Technologies, LLC has consistently earned a Bronze Campaign Award for its strong workplace campaign and due to exceptional support in 2022, earned the Silver Award. Employee contributions reached a new milestone in 2022 and the company generously matches pledges $.50/$1.00 – achieving its largest workplace campaign to date. Jean Randles, SSI’s Director of Human Resources, is a dedicated advocate and one of the longest-serving members of United Way Blackhawk Region’s volunteer Campaign Cabinet.


Workplace Campaigns that exceed $100,000.

  • ABC Supply Co. inc.
  • Kerry
  • Regal Rexnord


Workplace Campaigns that exceed $75,000 or campaigns with 60% participation and $125 per capita giving.

  • Baker Tilly US, LLP
  • Bank of Milton
  • Beloit Meals on Wheels
  • Blackhawk Bank
  • CASA of Rock County
  • Edgerton Community Outreach
  • Electrol Specialties Company
  • Fanning Excavating Inc.
  • Finley Buick GMC
  • First National Bank & Trust Company
  • Janesville Area Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Johnson Financial Group
  • Mercyhealth
  • Nowlan Law LLP
  • Old National Bank
  • Retired and Senior Volunteer Program
  • Ryeco Inc
  • United Way Blackhawk Region
  • Wells Fargo Advisors


Workplace Campaigns of $50,000 to $74,999 or campaigns with 50% participation and $75 per capita giving.

  • American Control Electronics
  • Beloit Box Board Co. Inc.
  • Beloit Health System
  • Culver’s of Beloit
  • Forward Janesville
  • Ignatek, LLC
  • Janesville Community Day Care Inc
  • Pieper Power
  • SENB Bank
  • SSI Technologies, LLC


Workplace Campaigns of $25,000 to $49,999 or campaigns with 40% participation and $50 per capita giving.

  • Alliant Energy
  • Blackhawk Community Credit Union
  • BMO Harris Bank
  • Boys & Girls Club of Janesville
  • Community Action of Rock & Walworth Co
  • Cotta Transmission
  • Fairbanks Morse Defense
  • Festival Foods
  • Hagen CPA
  • HealthNet of Rock County
  • Hendricks Holding Co, Inc.
  • LifeCircle
  • Lutheran Social Services
  • Salvation Army Rock County
  • Stateline Boys & Girls Clubs
  • YWCA Rock County


Workplace Campaigns with 100% employee participation.

  • Baker Tilly US, LLP
  • Boys & Girls Club of Janesville
  • CASA of Rock County
  • Edgerton Community Outreach
  • Fanning Excavating Inc.
  • Festival Foods
  • Janesville Area Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • LifeCircle
  • Premier Bank
  • Salvation Army Rock County
  • United Way Blackhawk Region
  • Wells Fargo Advisors


Workplace Campaigns that achieved $500 or more in per capita giving.

  • Regal Rexnord
  • United Way Blackhawk Region
  • Wells Fargo Advisors

About Us

United Way works hard to identify every donor and dollar possible to move the needle on tough-to-solve issues, our region’s most daunting social ills including poverty, hunger, homelessness, family violence, and addiction, to name a few.

We Fight For:

Recent Posts

Follow Us