United Way of Cowlitz and Wahkiakum Counties

United Way of Cowlitz and Wahkiakum Counties


The Longview Community Chest was first organized in 1937. In 1943 the scope of the Chest was expanded and the Articles of Incorporation were amended to Unite the Longview and Kelso areas into one Chest. The name of the Chest was then changed to the Longview-Kelso Community Chest. In 1954 the Chest had 18 partner agencies.
In 1959 Longview-Kelso Community Chest became the Cowlitz County United Fund. The goal of that campaign that year was $100,000 to be allocated to 12 charitable organizations. The effort raised $107,069, surpassing its goal by 7%. In ten year’s time, the Cowlitz County United Fund grew by 100%.

Further success and growth were marked in 1981 when under the leadership of Margaret Spence, the local campaign raised $500,000. Support was given to 16 local charitable organizations.

The Cowlitz County United Fund became United Way of Cowlitz County in 1989 with Kay Green at its helm. The organization supported 22 local organizations, and in the coming ten years, would raise over $900,000 a year.

In 1996 Bob Johnson followed Kay Green as the agency’s Director. With that change, the United Way moved to a new “Outcome” based funding system. In 1998 and 1999 the organization raised over $1,000,000 each year.

Today, Brooke Fisher-Clark is the Executive Director for the now named United Way of Cowlitz & Wahkiakum Counties supporting 25 partner agencies and programs. After a Strategic Planning Meeting, the United Way Board has taken steps forward into an impact focus of education. We are now the affiliate of Dolly Parton's Imagination Library to make an impact on early education, stay tuned for more ways we will be impacting local education! United Way still supports efforts in all three of our silos; health, education and financial stability. 

Number of Employees: 
5 or less employees
What is United Way of Cowlitz and Wahkiakum Counties?
The United Way of Cowlitz and Wahkiakum Counties is a local, community-building nonprofit organization that focuses on identifying and responding to the greatest human care needs facing our area’s residents. While Cowlitz and Wahkiakum Counties are a member of the national family of United Ways, the local organization operates independently according to the needs that exist right here in Cowlitz/Wahkiakum Counties
Who is the United Way of Cowlitz and Wahkiakum Counties?
United Way of Cowlitz and Wahkiakum Counties is governed by a group of community volunteers who make up the Board of Directors. These volunteers live and work in our area and serve together as United Way’s primary decision makers. Activities such as fundraising, planning and fund distribution are conducted by committed individuals who donate their time and effort to improving our community. Professional staff integrate, support and coordinate volunteer activities.
Why is United Way prominent in the work place?
By working with businesses, United Way is able to provide an easy, cost-effective way for people to contribute to their community. United Way’s annual fundraising reduces multiple demands for charitable dollars, provides education on community needs, pools resources and encourages generous giving.
Can I choose where my money goes?
Donors always have the option of designating all or part of a gift to any 501(c)(3) health and human service nonprofit organization. There is no administration fees for Partner Agency designations or other United Way designations
What else does United Way do in the community?
United Way of Cowlitz and Wahkiakum Counties is the administrator for the FEMA Emergency Food and Shelter Program, we are a proud partner of SingleCare, which is the supplier of discount prescription cards, and also a proud partner of 211info. None of these initiatives are funded with donated campaign dollars.
How can I learn more about United Way of Cowlitz and Wahkiakum Counties?
To learn more about United Way of Cowlitz & Wahkiakum, call (360) 423-5320
Marlene Johanson
Board President

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