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United Way of Central Oklahoma Raises over $17 million for Health and Human Service Programs

United Way of Central Oklahoma Raises over $17 million for Health and Human Service Programs

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Roberta B. Fields, Edie Roodman, David Rainbolt named Volunteer Award winners as UWCO wraps up 100th Anniversary year

United Way of Central Oklahoma (UWCO) celebrated the close of its centennial fundraising campaign Jan. 26 with the 23rd annual United Way Gala at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. A grand total of $17,060,864 was raised.

“We are simply amazed by our community’s support,” Natalie Shirley, UWCO centennial campaign co-chair, said. “We are incredibly grateful to wrap up our United Way’s 100th Anniversary with this outstanding success. Thank you to our generous donors, volunteers and Partner Agencies for sharing compassion with our neighbors who need it the most.”

The United Way Gala also honored three community leaders who exemplify compassion for others, with the organization’s most prestigious volunteer awards.

Roberta B. Fields, a trial lawyer with McAfee & Taft, is the recipient of the Ray Ackerman Leadership Award. This honor recognizes those who share Ackerman’s tireless efforts and devotion to United Way’s mission and set the standard for volunteering, leadership and caring. Fields has been involved with United Way for many years and currently serves on the board of directors, as well as the Human Resources Committee’s chair. She has been a loyal contributor for the past decade and is a member of United Way’s Women’s Leadership Society (WLS).

Another honoree is Oklahoma Israel Exchange Executive Director Edie Roodman. Roodman received the John and Berta Faye Rex Community Builder Award, which recognizes individuals who share the Rexes’ vision in finding long-term solutions to community needs. Edie serves on more than a dozen nonprofit boards throughout the central Oklahoma community and has been a WLS member for the past several years.

BancFirst’s Executive Chairman, David Rainbolt, is the recipient of the Richard H. Clements Lifetime Achievement Award, which honors individuals who have a lifelong dedication to volunteering, leadership and philanthropy not only to United Way but to the community as a whole. Rainbolt is a long-time supporter of UWCO and chaired the organization's fundraising campaign in 2017, raising more than $16 million. He and his wife, Kim, are Platinum donors to UWCO, giving to the nonprofit for more than 20 years.

“Roberta, Edie and David exemplify leaders in our community who dedicate their time and resources to building a stronger, healthier and more compassionate community. It was an honor to celebrate them this evening along with all of our generous donors, who truly make an impact in addressing the critical needs of central Oklahomans,” President & CEO of United Way of Central Oklahoma, Rachel C. Holt, said. “Thank you to our Centennial Campaign Co-Chairs, Natalie Shirley and Robert Clements, for leading a successful campaign and to our dedicated Board and Board Chair Shane Wharton for all they do to support United Way.”

During the event, other award winners, volunteers and Partner Agencies were recognized for their efforts throughout 2023, as well. ReMerge received the Doug Stussi Financial Stewardship Award for advocating for mothers and families through affordable housing initiatives. Moore Youth & Family Services was awarded the Wharton Family Mental Health Award for putting the mental and physical wellbeing of Oklahomans first.

UWCO has been serving the central Oklahoma community for 100 years, and this gala wrapped up a century of compassion.

About United Way of Central Oklahoma

United Way of Central Oklahoma celebrates its 100 year anniversary of serving the communities of central Oklahoma since 1923 and raising more than $700 million for its Partner Agency network. United Way of Central Oklahoma researches human needs within the communities of central Oklahoma and directs resources to 68 accountable health and human services agencies to meet those needs by improving the health, safety, education and economic well-being of its most vulnerable citizens. For more information about United Way of Central Oklahoma, please visit or call 405-236-8441.

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