RUTLAND—The United Way of Rutland County (UWRC), the largest non-governmental fundraiser for local services in the community, announced June 9 that the search team has appointed Kathleen Taft as associate director. She joins Ashley Bride, who assumed the UWRC executive director role in March 2021.
The board of directors partners with the community and the executive director to form a search team. UWRC began the search process in late February and did a full review of the scope of responsibilities.
Bride stated, “Kathleen is an excellent addition to UWRC, her experience and skillset will allow her to be a great source of support to the community agencies we partner with.”
Taft, a native Coloradan and graduate of Montana State University in Bozeman, Montana, recently relocated to Vermont from Hot Sulphur Springs, Colorado. She has experience in data management and analysis as a federal consultant, and program management and policy development with a local public health agency. As the person responsible for building a brand new environmental health program in an expansive, rural county, she was awarded a competitive Association of Food and Drug Officials grant to assess and develop program standards and long term goals. Active as a volunteer from a young age, throughout her life she could often be found helping with chamber of commerce fundraisers, working with disabled children through adaptive skiing and horseback riding, serving at soup kitchens, or participating in various community organizations. Taft’s work will be closely involved with supporting UWRC community partners and grant-funded agencies.
“I am excited to pivot from direct service to an impressive organization like the United Way that enables broader impact across the healthcare, financial stability, and education sectors,” Taft said.
“As a new Vermont transplant, I look forward to continuing to learn about the many wonderful organizations in Rutland County doing important work in the community. I’m here to hear about anything we can do to support them in our role as funders. Ultimately we are here to support and honor their work, and highlight their extraordinary efforts.”