United Way of San Diego County Raises Over 110,000 at Virtual Centennial Celebration

Event proceeds to support and continue the nonprofit’s mission to bring together community partners, transform lives, and eliminate disparities.

Written by: Claudia Chow, Digital Marketing Manager, UWSD

San Diego, Calif. – Oct. 20, 2020 – On Thursday, Oct. 8, United Way of San Diego County hosted its Virtual Centennial Celebration and fundraiser commemorating its Diamond Anniversary. The nonprofit raised its glass to honor its past and celebrate the present, as well as redefine and reimagine the future of our local community. More than 225 attendees gathered virtually to celebrate the organization’s outstanding work and raise more than $110,000 to support the nonprofit’s mission.

The event co-chairs included the following:

  • Constance M. Carroll, D., chancellor, San Diego Community College District
  • Jerry Sanders, president and CEO, San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce
  • Mark Stuart, CFRE, president and CEO, The San Diego Foundation

Event co-chairs and the Mulvaney Family recognized four prominent community leaders in the education, business, and philanthropy sectors in San Diego. Honorees included:

  • Solar Turbines, Lifetime Achievement Award
  • SDG&E, Philanthropic Partner of the Year Award
  • Hunter Family, James F. Mulvaney Award
  • Sylvia McGrade, Principal, Adams Elementary School (ret.) Community Partner Award


Celebrating 100 years of community service

The organization’s Virtual Centennial Celebration also focused on its current and future work—including its leadership in the Earned Income Tax Credit Coalition and the Count Me 2020 Coalition, which aims to ensure every San Diegan is counted in the 2020 U.S. Census; the San Diego Worker Assistance Initiative to help provide flexible resources to individuals and families impacted by layoffs and reduced working hours due to the pandemic; and its partnership with the Advancing San Diego initiative to build a pipeline of local talent through internships for community college students with local businesses.

United Way of San Diego County also addressed the racial justice movement throughout the event, reminding attendees that only by being united can the community achieve equality and racial justice, especially when it comes to the urgency of addressing educational gaps between White and Asian, and Black and Brown students in our schools.

Attendees had the opportunity to participate in a silent auction and delight in entertainment from Fernando DaRosa, Mariachi Torres, NuEra, and Whitney Shay. A presentation of United Way of San Diego County’s past, present, and future community leaders was also showcased and prominent San Diegans came together from the comfort of their homes to wish the organization a ‘Happy Centennial Celebration.’

Event sponsors included San Diego Gas and Electric as the Diamond Sponsor, Solar Turbines as the Platinum Sponsor, the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority and US Bank as the Gold Sponsors, and Dudley & Finch and The San Diego Foundation as Silver Sponsors for the event.

Leading the San Diego community into the future

“It has been a whirlwind of a year for our community and the world, and to be able to still celebrate our sponsors, donors, volunteers, and staff was an unforgettable way to give thanks to all who support our mission year round,” says United Way of San Diego County President and CEO Nancy L. Sasaki. “Whether you’re a longtime supporter or someone who just started your involvement with our organization, your support has transformed the lives of many children, young adults, and families throughout our region. We look forward to continuing our work for many years to come with the help and support of our community guiding us through.”

The celebration isn’t over! United Way of San Diego County has kicked off its 100 Days of Giving to raise $100,000. The campaign will end on December 31, 2020. For those interested in supporting the nonprofit’s next 100 years, visit uwsd.org/give-100 for more information on how to donate, volunteer, and get involved.