Marianne Cartan: United Way leadership — in search of passion |

Marianne Cartan: United Way leadership — in search of passion

The United Way of Nevada County is searching for an executive director.

As a member of the Board of Directors, I wanted to reach out to the readers of The Union and ask for your assistance in our efforts to draw the attention of people in our community who are searching:

Searching for an opportunity to lead a successful, locally independent, nonprofit organization into its future.

Searching for employment that does not feel like work because every day offers a sense of fulfillment.

Searching to satisfy an innate and passionate need to help others. Our new executive director will have the support of an active board who will welcome creativity, innovation, resourcefulness, inclusivity, and a growth mindset.

United Way of Nevada County has been expanding its services over the past few years from solely providing locally-raised funds to Nevada County nonprofits to assisting with and creating its own nonprofit programs to help address gaps in services that are currently available in our community. The United Way is now needs a leader who will help guide our organization into this future.

The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a heavy toll on many families in our community, as we all know. United Way has been very active with our partners in providing food to those who have found themselves without the resources to pay bills and maintain even minimum spending on groceries.

Food Access Saturday, in partnership with Interfaith Food Ministry, is one such program that was designed to serve individuals and families who could not access food distribution on the weekdays. Last year, 3,230 bags of groceries were provided to 444 families.

In addition, the United Way began setting up food pantries on some of our local high school campuses with the intention of extending this program to more schools in the future. Students were able to “shop” free of charge for groceries of their choice to take home to their families.

In response to the school closures caused by the pandemic, the United Way adapted and developed a mobile pantry system in which bags were packed and distributed outside of the school buildings. We are looking to expand our pantry program when students return to campuses this fall. Over 1,200 families were served through our food pantry program.

In July 2022, the United Way will again be partnering with California CareForce to provide a free pop-up health clinic for our community members. The health clinic in 2020, just before closures began, served hundreds of community members by providing free on-site health care, vision, and dental services.

United Way fundraising efforts enable us to provide new programs and to continue our support of other local nonprofits. We’re is self-funded through yearly campaigns, individual pledges, gifts, and United Way-sponsored fundraising events. It was not until I became a board member that I learned that each local United Way organization is responsible for its own funding and thus needs the support of this community that it serves.

Our new executive director will be leading our organizational efforts to strengthen our already established relationships, to develop additional local partnerships, and to identify areas of support in our community that are not being addressed at this time.

The executive director will have to, as in most nonprofit leadership positions, wear many hats, including program development, community outreach, and fundraising.

As a resident of Nevada County for the past 38 years, I know that our community is filled with talented and capable individuals. Word of mouth is a wonderfully successful communication tool, and I am encouraging those of you who are, or know someone who might be, a great fit to apply for this opportunity to lead United Way of Nevada County as its executive director.

Please go to United Way of Nevada County’s website at for information regarding submitting an application or contact me at with any questions. We’re grateful for the continued support of our wonderful community, our local partnerships, and all of our local service organizations that do so much for so many.

Marianne Cartan is a retired educator and serves on the board for The United Way of Nevada County.


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