UPAF campaign generates record $12 million, still fundraising in Waukesha County

Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 09:34 am

The United Performing Arts Fund blasted past previous campaign totals this year after surpassing the $12 million mark.

The nonprofit organization, which supports and advocates for southeastern Wisconsin’s performing arts community, on Tuesday announced that its 2015 campaign pulled in $12,001,226. That total represents a 2.3 percent increase over 2014.

The 2015 campaign ran from March 3 through June 9. Results were made public Tuesday evening during a special Campaign Finale that was held at Turner Hall Ballroom and sponsored by Potawatomi Hotel & Casino.

UPAF has set new records during each of the past three years and in the past five years has increased its campaign total by 27 percent. This year, the organization sought to raise $11.86 million and exceeded that total through Workplace Giving Campaigns and gifts from area corporations, foundations and individual donors. The campaign was also fueled by the 2015 UPAF Ride for the Arts fundraiser and separate fundraising efforts led by UPAF’s member groups and affiliates.

“We achieved significant advances in many areas this year, including notable increases in leadership giving and employee participation in Workplace Giving Campaigns,” Deanna Tillisch, UPAF president and chief executive officer, said in an announcement. “We would like to thank all of the generous donors who helped UPAF achieve this monumental success.”

While celebrating the success of its overall campaign, UPAF is still raising funds for its Westside Campaign, according to spokesperson Leigh Lane Peine. At the start of the Westside Campaign, UPAF announced it was set on raising $1.6 million. The campaign, which folds into the broader campaign and benefits Waukesha County groups, is currently sitting at $1.3 million, Lane Peine said.

The organization is confident it will meet its Westside Campaign goal in the next month as companies continue running Workplace Giving Campaigns, she said.

Among the highlights of the overall 2015 campaign:

*More than 190 area companies facilitated Workplace Giving Campaigns, including 19 new campaigns. Collectively, the campaigns generated $4 million, up $100,000 from 2014.
*PricewaterhouseCoopers earned the Baird Award, which honors a company that has shown increased employee participation, an increase in the average employee donation and campaign involvement by the leadership.
*Milwaukee-based Davis & Kuelthau, s.c. generated the most funds of the 19 new Workplace Giving Campaigns.
*Milwaukee-based Robert W. Baird & Co. led Workplace Giving participation as nine out of 10 employees donated to UPAF.
*Milwaukee-based Northwestern Mutual was again the largest overall donor. The firm’s Workplace Giving Campaign topped out all Workplace Giving Campaigns at more than $930,000. The firm’s total donations, with its company gift factored in, exceeded $1.6 million.
*Glendale-based Johnson Controls was the campaign’s largest company donor and contributed more than $1.5 million with its company gift and Workplace Giving funds. The company matched employees’ Workplace Giving donations on top of its gift.
*Milwaukee-based The Marcus Corporation was the largest in-kind supporter of the campaign as it provided $25,000 worth of in-kind donations.

UPAF’s 2015 campaign was chaired by Patty Cadorin, vice president and chief of staff to the CEO of BMO Harris Bank; Tom Cardella, MillerCoors CEO; and Mark Sabljak, publisher of the Milwaukee Business Journal.

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