On Feb. 20, United Way of Greater McHenry County had the pleasure of welcoming a new face to our team, longtime Marengo resident Carole Peters.

Carole was hired as the new executive director of United Way, and it has been a privilege to have a few weeks to get to know her and her engaging, enthusiastic personality. Carole is outgoing and compassionate, and I commend the board of directors for working diligently to find a person who would be a perfect fit for our organization.

I thought it would be a great idea to share with the community a little more about our new executive director by asking her some questions.

Q: What did you do before you accepted the position of executive director?

A: I previously served as the assistant vice president of adult enrollment at Judson University in Elgin and Rockford.

In this role, I helped over 1,500 adults return to school to complete their B.A. or M.A. degrees.

Q: What compelled you to join the United Way team?

A: As I researched more about United Way and the exceptional work being done in McHenry County, I quickly realized that this spoke to my heart.

Having benefited personally from the services provided by local human service agencies, I know firsthand the impact they have on the lives of the many people in our county. This truly compelled me to apply for the role of executive director and consider a new career with United Way of Greater McHenry County.

Q: What is one surprising thing you learned about United Way while going through the process?

A: The large number of people being served. I learned that over 83,000 people are impacted each year by United Way’s mission.

We support 30 agencies and 44 programs. This is a huge impact. Lives are truly being transformed by the good work being accomplished by United Way.

Q: What are you most excited about for your new role?

A: I am excited about positively impacting struggling individuals and families throughout McHenry County. For the past four years, I have been personally focused on giving hope.

Through my new role, I will directly impact the agencies and programs that provide services to the people in our county.

In the end, my fundraising efforts will raise money to impact these programs, which will help give people hope. When you have hope, you are more likely to move focus forward, which will impact people in a positive way.

Q: What are some of your goals as the new executive director for United Way?

A: I am looking forward to building strong relationships and partnerships across McHenry County.

I also want to work on increasing the marketing and fundraising efforts so we can build upon the success from the past 50 years as well as raise awareness of the continued needs of the people we serve through the 30 agencies partners in our county.

Q: How do you LIVE UNITED?

A: As a servant leader and volunteer, I have always been involved in my community.

I believe each of us has the opportunity to impact people in a positive way through our own volunteer efforts.

Together, we can unite and focus on specific areas of need in our community.

My hope is that through my example, people are seeing how they, too, can impact people and come together for the greater cause to impact our community through living united.

• • •

As you can tell, Carole is an exceptional individual. The board of directors, staff, volunteers and agencies all are very excited for this new chapter.

If you are interested in learning more about Carole Peters and helping support the mission of United Way of Greater McHenry County, please feel free to check out our new website at www.uwmchenry.org or call our office at 815-363-1377.

• Heather Arnold is the marketing manager at the United Way of Greater McHenry County.