Due to a strong start and robust final weeks, the 2005
Johns Hopkins United Way campaign has surpassed its goal.
As of Jan. 5, the official last day pledges were marked
toward the 2005 United Way of Central Maryland campaign,
the combined contributions from those at the university,
Johns Hopkins Medicine and the Applied Physics Laboratory
totaled $2.69 million, nearly $94,000 past the desired
The university's campaign officially kicked off on
Sept. 22. Johns Hopkins Medicine launched its intensive
two-week United Way effort the following month with a free
lunch for anyone who brought his or her completed pledge
forms to an outdoor celebration.
This year's three campaign chairs--for the university,
Stephanie Reel, vice provost for information technology and
chief information officer; for the Applied Physics
Laboratory, Jim Happel, a member of APL's principal
professional staff; and for Johns Hopkins Medicine,
Patricia Brown, president of Johns Hopkins Health Care--had
set a combined goal of $2,568,000.
The $2.69 million raised represents a total for
contributions from JHM and all university divisions except
the School of Advanced International Studies, whose
donations are reported to the National Capital Area
campaign in Washington. Last year's combined Johns Hopkins
gifts to the United Way of Central Maryland totaled
Reel said that the campaign, whose theme was "Helping
Neighbors in Need," started off like "gangbusters" and then
leveled off. What helped put the campaign over the top,
Reel said, was the hard work and enthusiasm of the
volunteer solicitors who mounted a strong and successful
Reel said at the start of the campaign that there was
some concern that the high degree of giving that was
supporting disaster relief efforts for victims of the South
Asian tsunami and Hurricane Katrina would affect the United
"It was a tough year, and that is why I'm so elated
that we were able to meet our goal," Reel said. "The only
disappointing aspect was participation, which [at 20
percent] wasn't as high as we would have liked. But that
could be attributed in part to the charity fatigue due to
the generous amounts people gave to hurricane relief."
Six of the university's 14 United Way-designated units
exceeded their goals, and four others were just slightly
short. Of special note in this year's campaign, the School
of Medicine bested its goal by nearly 18 percent, raising
$625,960. Homewood Student Affairs had the highest
participation rate, 65 percent, and raised $34,423. Johns
Hopkins University Press had the second-highest
participation rate, 48 percent.
Overall, Johns Hopkins institutions had 486 leadership
members--93 of them new--a designation for those who donate
$1,000 or more. Leadership members were responsible for 58
percent of the total collected.
APL raised more than $665,000 with a 40 percent
participation rate and took part in more than 30 Day of
Happel said the Lab's "low-key" campaign, which didn't
advertise a specific goal amount, seemed to appeal to the
"We tried to make it more about helping and about
people rather than seeing how much money we could collect,"
Happel said. "That theme seemed to work for us this
The university's Day of Caring event involved Marian
House, a transitional housing agency for women located near
Johns Hopkins at Eastern; a group of its residents joined
JHU volunteers for lunch and a visit to the Reginald F.
Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History &
Culture. Also, school supplies were collected for St.
Jerome's Head Start, a federally funded program providing
academic skills training to children from low-income
Divisions and departments also hosted special
fund-raising events, including the Octoberfest held by
IT@JH, a Chili Cook-Off sponsored by Homewood Student
Affairs and the School of Nursing's Karaoke Party. Several
departments had bake sales and contests, while Homewood
Student Affairs got artistic with a Paint the Blue Jay
contest, and Psychological and Brain Sciences dreamed up a
Coin War contest to mess with people's heads (and tails).
The Center for Communication Programs at the School of
Public Health held an in-house, online auction and raised
$2,900 that went to Baltimore Community Foundation, a
United Way agency; the center's staff donated items that
had been collected during international travels.
Although the campaign has officially ended, donations
are needed and welcome all year round. To make a pledge, or
for more information on the campaign, go to the campaign's
secure Web site at