United Way board member discusses organization’s importance in community

2013-Wordpress---Volunteer-Spotlight-Ed-TimberlakeWhen it comes to volunteering, there are few people who can match Ed Timberlake’s outstanding track record of community service. The long-time bank executive currently serves on Heart of Florida United Way’s Executive Committee and as chair for the Investing in Results Council. He has also served as campaign chair for the 2002 fundraising campaign, Search Committee chair for the President/CEO and chairman of the board from 2004 to 2006.

In January 2008, Ed joined Seaside National Bank & Trust as chair of the Central Florida Board and as a member of the bank’s board of directors. In 2007, he retired as president for Bank of America Central Florida, a position that he held for seven years. Ed has resided in Orlando since November 1994 and previously lived in Miami for 16 years.

He is also a member of various other charitable boards including: Dr. Phillips Performing Arts Center, Florida Community Loan Fund, Winter Park Memorial Hospital Family Foundation Board and the Central Florida Partnership.

We recently spoke to Ed about his relationship with United Way.

When did you first get involved with Heart of Florida United Way?
I have been with the board since January of 1995. I have been term limited once or twice during that time but it’s been a pretty consistent board service for 19 years. I was also involved with United Way in Miami prior to coming to Orlando.

Can you share one United Way experience that made a memorable impact on you? What has been very impactful for me and for the community was when United Way adopted the Investing in Results (IIR) business model in January 2007.  We’ve been implementing that model for seven years and we have seen the impact in what we’re trying to do by looking at the root causes of problems instead of acting as a temporary Band-Aid. That’s been very gratifying personally and gratifying for the team that we’ve been able to hold together for seven years.

In terms of individuals, it would be hard to single any one person out. One of the key moments that was very impactful for me was serving as the campaign chair in 2002. What stands out for me is when I look back at all the organizations we met with that year. I think we made over 250 company presentations. It was very hard work but it was very satisfying.

What one thing do you wish more people in our community knew about United Way? I wish they understood United Way better and what it does. This is a very complex organization. It’s evolved tremendously over the years. It’s not just a fundraising campaign. We contribute to the charitable work being done by other organizations and we augment what they are doing. United Way is not a single mission agency anymore. We have to do a better job of communicating that message.

What is the key ingredient to running a successful workplace campaign? It’s been proven over and over again that commitment from the company’s senior executives is one of the keys to running a successful campaign. The second key factor is adherence to the best practices promoted by United Way.

How do you feel about the future of United Way and our community? I think the future looks good. We’ve been able to do things at United Way that we only dreamed about several years ago. The impact we make is far bigger than the dollars raised. The management team at United Way is first class and our future looks bright as we build upon our successes.

Would you like to say any final words regarding the United Way? I would like to offer my sincere compliments to the entire United Way staff for what they’ve done and will continue to do. I also extend huge kudos to all the volunteers. It takes hundreds of people to sustain this organization so I give a big thank you to those who support United Way and other charitable organizations in our community.

United Way is creating opportunities for a better life with help from men and women such as Ed Timberlake. For more information on how to volunteer, please visit United Way’s Volunteer Center at http://www.hfuw.org/Volunteer.php or contact Matthew Blood, Manager of Community Participation, at Matthew.Blood@hfuw.org, or (407) 849-2372.


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