Art teacher Jim Dodson and Gene Patterson, a former television anchor who now works at Y-12 National Security Complex, will co-chair the 2015-2016 fundraising campaign for United Way of Anderson County, a press release said.
It’s a period of transition and change, the release said, and Dodson and Patterson will “lead the charge as UWAC kicks off its fresh campaign to raise money for local agencies.”
Patterson has been delivering local news for more than 30 years, as an anchor at both WBIR and WATE. He also served his community as deputy to the Knoxville Mayor Victor Ashe, focusing on city initiatives and facilitating community task forces. In 2015, Patterson joined the communications team at Consolidated Nuclear Security at Y-12 in Oak Ridge.
Dodson has taught art in the Oak Ridge Schools system since 1987, and has been recognized as both the Tennessee Art Educator of the Year and the National Middle School Art Educator of the Year. In 2015, Dodson received the Distinguished Educator Award and was appointed to the Humanities Tennessee Board. His efforts to establish student art exhibitions all over Tennessee have earned more than $7 million in scholarships for his students.
Both men have expressed their support for UWAC, the release said.
“As a long-time educator, I see firsthand the needs of the youth and how important meeting basic needs are to the families we serve in order to better equip the children for a challenging world,” Dodson said. “The UWAC is poised to be the organization that meets that need.”
Patterson likewise sees UWAC as an invaluable fixture of the community: “Some of these groups would not be able to do their work if United Way wasn’t there to help. We are a better community because of United Way.”
Naomi Asher, the United Way’s new executive director, said she is thrilled with the enthusiasm of these two prominent men.
“We couldn’t have better co-chairs for this year!” Asher said. “I think we are really setting the stage for the ‘re-invigoration’ of our United Way program with these guys. Both Gene and Jim are very involved with the community and passionate about the agencies we support. I am thrilled the have this opportunity to work alongside them. We have big plans and big goals for this year, but we are confident we can reach those goals with the people we have stepping up.”
If you or your business are interested in getting involved with the United Way campaign this fall, please call the office at (865) 483-8431.
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