WALLINGFORD — Along with the start of its annual fundraising campaign, the United Way of Meriden & Wallingford celebrated the beginning of Maria Campos-Harlow’s tenure as executive director on Thursday.
About 150 supporters gathered at the Connecticut Hospital Association’s office for the event, which also served as a chance for the Midstate Chamber of Commerce to feature CHA in a Business after Hours event.
“(Tonight is) an opportunity to get people together, to get people excited about the campaign, to get ... their support, and hoping for a very successful campaign,” Campos-Harlow said.
Midstate Chamber of Commerce President Sean W. Moore said the annual event brings together people from all facets of the community.
“It’s good to bring otherwise separate (agencies) together,” Moore said.
Amidst drinks, appetizers and music, attendees could stop at tables set up by a handful of the agencies United Way supports, including the Columbus House, Literacy Volunteers and the Boys & Girls Club.
Campos-Harlow said the kickoff event was a chance for community members, particularly business people, to get to know the programs and agencies their monetary donations support, and a chance for the nonprofits to get to know their supporters through United Way.
The fundraising campaign lasts through November, and funds go toward the many “critical human care services and projects that address the top concerns of our communities,” as United Way describes. The United Way of Meriden & Wallingford supports about 20 local agencies.
Campos-Harlow succeeded James Ieronimo, who held the executive director position since 2006. Thursday’s event was a chance to welcome Campos-Harlow, as well as say farewell to Ieronimo.