January 11, 2017

Executive Director Martha Maksym's Farewell

profileMarthaMaksym-0003.jpgDear Friends, Supporters, Partners and Colleagues,

The transition into 2017 is profound both for me, and for United Way of Northwest Vermont. On January 5th, I was sworn in as the Deputy Secretary at Vermont Agency of Human Services and officially resigned my post as the Executive Director of United Way of Northwest Vermont.

This is all VERY bittersweet for me. After more than 20 years of service and dedication to United Way, there are few reasons for which I would leave, yet this is an opportunity for me to carry forward my commitment to ALL Vermont communities and make an impact on a State level.

I have never been so assured by the work model we have in place – United Way is, and will always be a community-run organization. The mission and vision that guide us are not mine, nor that of our future Executive Director. Our priorities are determined by the community. Our governance structure is built such that all investment and strategic directions are informed and approved by community volunteers: our Campaign Cabinet, Impact Team, Community Investment Committee and Board of Directors. It is the will of our community and our supporters that guide our work.

Knowing that we have this tried and true system of governance, dedicated and passionate staff, and thousands of supporters gives me the confidence to move on from this amazing organization and trust that it will continue to serve our community and remain strong. I have been the voice and served as the spokesperson, but I’m not responsible for what we’ve accomplished. All the amazing talent that we have in our leadership team, our staff and our volunteers are here and are stronger than ever.

With new leadership comes new energy, ideas and innovation, and I’m truly excited to see the good that will come. I extend my tremendous gratitude for your understanding during what may feel like an abrupt departure. Our Board of Directors is moving with efficiency to navigate the transition minimize disruption to our work. We expect to welcome an Interim Executive Director to support our staff and keep things running smoothly during our search for a new ED. I promise to see United Way through this transition of leadership and support the new Director in every way I can.

If you have questions about this transition, please connect with Cindy Elcan at 802-861-7840 or

I am – and always will be – your advocate.

With gratitude and humble service,

Martha Maksym

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To truly make a change, we MUST work together. Now is the time to raise the bar and expect a better quality of life for our neighbors who struggle. If we all give the best way we can, we can make our community the best it can be. There’s a place for everyone at our table – join us and get involved in a way that’s meaningful for you.