WCCF Recognizes 2016 Philanthropy Banquet Honorees for Exemplary Giving & Service

September 21, 2016

Crystal Award Cc

The Washington County Community Foundation (WCCF) is pleased to announce the 2016 Philanthropist of the Year Andrew Uram and the recipients of the 2016 Charles C. Keller Excellence Award for Corporate Philanthropy: Community Bank (large employer category), cfsbank (medium employer category), and Cox Market (small employer category).  The honorees will be recognized for their generosity at the WCCF’s annual Philanthropy Banquet on Thursday, November 3, 2016, at the Hilton Garden Inn at Southpointe.

The Foundation created the Philanthropist of the Year award in 1999 to recognize local philanthropists for exceptional generosity to the Washington County community.  Criteria for the award are as follows: Demonstrated exceptional generosity, relative to one’s ability to give, through personal financial gifts to local charitable causes; Demonstrated encouragement and motivation of others to financially support local charitable causes; Documented efforts to improve the quality of life in Washington County through volunteer leadership of local charitable and other community activities; and Documented efforts to advance philanthropy in general.

The Uram family name has been associated with charitable giving and service in Washington County for decades.  Its patriarch, Andrew Uram, served as the Assistant Vice President of the Trust Department and Banking Officer with Mellon Bank for 13 years before retiring in 1986. Prior to joining the bank, he spent 26 years with Metropolitan Life Insurance and was cited as a leader among the company’s 30,000 field representatives in the US and Canada at that time. 

Active in various civic affairs, Andrew has served as Chairman of the 1964 and 1978 United Way campaigns and President in 1969, Chairman of the Catawba District of the Boy Scouts of America, President and Paul Harris Fellow of the Washington Rotary Club, and District Governor of Rotary District 7330. He has been a Director of the Alcohol & Drug Information Center, Multiple Sclerosis Society, as well as the Greater Washington Area Chamber of Commerce. In addition to giving much of his time through service, Andrew and his late wife Julie came to be known as ardent financial supporters of many local charities including Immaculate Conception Church in Washington, the Diocese of Pittsburgh, and the Washington Hospital. 

The Charles C. Keller Excellence Award for Corporate Philanthropy was created in 2011 to recognize local for-profit businesses for exemplary giving and community service. Criteria for the award are as follows: Demonstrate a company philosophy of community service, such as time-off or flexible scheduling for employees to perform community service; Encourage employee commitment at multiple levels of the company; Donate resources including financial, personnel, facility or product; Orchestrate a sustained effort to address a community need;  and Promote active community participation by others. 

Community Bank is an independent, locally owned, full service commercial bank that has served western Pennsylvania for over 110 years. Having completed its merger with First Federal Savings Bank, Community Bank now holds assets approaching $900 million and operates 16 offices in Greene, Allegheny, Washington, Fayette, and Westmoreland Counties.  The bank frequently sponsors community activities such as the Art Blast on the Mon, information days for first responders, the Women’s Financial Forum hosted by the POWER of Southpointe, Social Service League Holiday Extravaganza Craft Show, the PONY World Series, Washington & Jefferson College, United Way, Washington Hospital Foundation, Waynesburg University, and the Washington County Community Foundation.  The bank’s employees are also eager to lend a helping hand for a good cause, such as making wreaths to benefit the bank’s Relay for Life teams. 

In 2008, Community Bank introduced the Tri-County Oil and Gas Expo event to educate and assist local businesses in becoming involved with opportunities stemming from the Marcellus Shale play.  The Expo developed into a cooperative venture made up of representatives from local government, private businesses and educational institutions.  To complement its long-standing “customer comes first” philosophy, the bank introduced its “Community Bank Cares” program, which encourages qualifying loan customers to designate a charity or church, local or national, to receive a $100 contribution from the bank.  More than $85,000 has been distributed through this very popular initiative to specialty hospitals, churches, fire companies, animal shelters, health organizations, and military charities.

Although its name may be new, cfsbank’s commitment to the community is a strong as it was since the day it was founded in 1936 as a savings and loan. Today, the mutual savings bank, formerly known as Charleroi Federal, holds more than $500 million in assets and serves the region through nine branches. President & CEO Neil D. Bassi once stated, “One of the remarkable things about Charleroi Federal is that it has always remained loyal to the commitment of community banking, remembering that its chief service is to provide whatever financing is needed by our customers.” That loyalty to the community extends far beyond banking services. Just a few of the diverse local projects and programs that have received its charitable support include: the libraries of the Mon Valley, Charleroi Main Street Art History Center, Little Great Race, PONY World Series, Western PA Garden Tractor Association, the Southwestern PA Area Agency on Aging’s Senior Games, Easter egg hunts, Chamber events, the PA Breast Cancer Coalition, Taste of the Township in Peters Township, the Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh, as well as the Monongahela Aquatorium. 

For generations, Cox Market has been a grocery staple in the Mon Valley. Founded in 1949 by Walter and Rose Cox, the store is still owned, managed, and staffed by the Cox family. Steve and Peggy Cox, the current owners, represent the third generation of the family to run the business. Both through the store and individually, the Cox family has supported various community endeavors including agricultural initiatives, the 4th of July fireworks display, local youth sports teams, the Mon Aquatorium Commission, the Monongahela Area Historical Society, and Grace Lutheran Church.

Proceeds from the Philanthropy Banquet will support the charitable activities of the WCCF, including the Andrew G. and Juliana J. Uram Fund.  To make a reservation for the November 3 Philanthropy Banquet, please contact the Washington County Community Foundation at 724-222-6330 or info@wccf.net.