With the announcement that UWNCM President/CEO Philip Grzewinski will be retiring in summer 2019, we will be highlighting some of his experiences and perspectives over the coming months. In this entry he looks toward the future of the UWNCM.
As he prepares to depart the role that he has held for nearly three decades, UWNCM President/CEO Philip Grzewinski agrees that it’s time for a change. In fact, he believes it’s always time for a change.
“At the United Way, we focus on creating change in our community, but we also have to be the change,” says Grzewinski. “I’ve always had the mindset that we have to change ourselves constantly in order to adapt to the needs of the community as well as larger trends. If we don’t, the world will pass right by us.”
One of the most significant changes Grzewinski cites, is the need for the UWNCM to connect with a younger generation of supporters.
“Older supporters have traditionally trusted us to have local knowledge and do good things with their money, but many younger people have different mindsets. They want to be closer to the charitable acts and be more hands-on,” says Grzewinski.
He believes that this demographic shift presents both opportunities and challenges for the UWNCM.
“It’s great to see that younger people want to be involved. For example, each year more and more young people are taking part in our Day of Caring event,” says Grzewinski. “Going forward, the United Way will have to find even more ways to interact directly with younger people if they want to get their support.”
While the UWNCM moves forward, Grzewinski will of course be undergoing a significant change in his own life, but he says he is looking forward to whatever lies ahead.
“I’m going to step away because somebody else needs to come in and lead the way, but I’ll continue to be a resource,” says Grzewinski. “I also believe that I will find the next thing to do. It will make itself known to me. This isn’t hanging up my boots.”