DALLAS (June 29, 2020) – United Way of Metropolitan Dallas is proud to welcome Anne Chow, CEO-AT&T Business, as the first female CEO to serve as the organization’s annual fundraising campaign chair. Chow will chair United Way Dallas’ 96th annual campaign, following a long line of influential global CEOs and community leaders including AT&T Chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson, who served as 2011 campaign chair. Chow follows former executive chairman of Kimberly-Clark Corporation Tom Falk and his wife Karen in the year-long role.
Led by Chow, United Way of Metropolitan Dallas’s 2020-2021 effort will officially begin July 1, with workplace campaigns gearing up in the Fall. This year’s campaign will feature the launch of United Way’s Aspire United 2030 Goals, underscoring the aspiration that every North Texan has the opportunity and access needed to develop their full potential.
Of United Way’s three pillars of community impact- education, income and health, Chow’s focus will be on improving community health. As North Texas returns and recovers from the far-reaching Coronavirus pandemic, Chow is committed to ensuring every person has the opportunity and power to thrive.
“COVID-19 has touched everyone in the Dallas community; many have tragically lost loved ones, had their income streams severely impacted or are experiencing new concerns as to how they will care for family during this time,” said Chow. “Often, the impact is less overt – the mental toll from self-isolation or new feelings of anxiety being in crowded spaces, trying to juggle work and home life given the forced commingling of the two as living spaces became workplaces. In all cases, it has impacted our health in some way. The global pandemic is a once-in-a-generation health crisis, but it also triggers a once-in-a-generation opportunity to create new solutions which will help us emerge as a stronger community and society. Now is the time for Dallas to prove that ‘we’re all in this together’.”
Chow recognizes underserved communities have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic. The pandemic has exposed deep fault lines of inequality within public health and health care systems – from the ability of people to reduce the risk of exposure to the probability of survival, if infected. Recent studies show Black people are more than 3.5 times more likely to die of COVID-19 than white people, and Latino people are nearly twice as likely to die of the virus as white people (yale.edu).
“There is a disproportionate burden of illness and death among racial and ethnic groups from COVID-19,” said Chow. “Marginalized communities don’t have access to affordable, adequate health care. These groups often go without health insurance, paid sick or family leave benefits, stable or affordable housing, as well as food security. We all have a role – corporations, non-profits, and leaders across the metro – in supporting each other as the North Texas community not only responds and recovers but reinvents itself. We can’t go back to the way things were. This campaign is all about taking action today to ensure a better tomorrow.”
United Way’s three focus areas of health, education and income- the building blocks of a thriving community- are all inextricably linked. More than 130,000 children in North Texas have emotional disturbance or addictive disorders, and these youth will have a harder time getting a quality education if their mental health isn’t improved. Higher levels of education contribute to lower levels of mental stress. Financial issues and mental health also often go hand-in-hand. Those with high financial stress are twice as likely to report poor overall health. People with depression and anxiety are three times more likely to be in debt.
“Healthy people and healthy places are critical for a healthy economy, and employees are more productive when they’re healthy,” said Charlene Lake, AT&T senior vice president of Corporate Social Responsibility and Chief Sustainability Officer, and United Way of Metropolitan Dallas board chair. “This pandemic has made us realize the criticality of communication and connection along with the need to continue to innovate and use technology to make this world a better, healthier place. Under Anne’s inventive and passionate leadership, this campaign will help give all North Texans the tools they need to live longer, healthier lives.”
“Anne has long believed that ideas, invention and innovation thrive at the intersection of technology and people,” said Jennifer Sampson, McDermott-Templeton president and CEO, United Way of Metropolitan Dallas. “Her service as an ethnically diverse, female CEO is historic, and we are incredibly grateful to have her and her team at AT&T as a powerful, change-making force to accelerate solutions for our community’s healing and good.”
To learn more about United Way of Metropolitan Dallas and how to get involved, visit www.unitedwaydallas.org.
About United Way of Metropolitan Dallas
United Way of Metropolitan Dallas is a community-based social change organization that puts opportunity in the hands of all North Texans. Working with our determined supporters, we lead the charge to improve education, income and health—the building blocks of opportunity. We invite all change-seekers in our community to Live United to achieve lasting results right here at home.Learn More