Over the course of 2021, we will feature 100 Heroes who have been instrumental in our fight for the basic needs, education and financial stability of our neighbors for the past century. To learn more about how we are continuing to serve the Bluegrass in 2021, click here.
Today we are interviewing Winston Faircloth, a former President and CEO of UWBG.
How does UWBG serve people in the Bluegrass?
I think we serve best as a community round table. Whether it’s geographically or economically, or from a faith, private or public perspective. The community table brings people together, rallies the community around common concerns and makes us all better members of our community.
What do you think is the most special thing about UWBG?
There are many volunteers who have donated so much of their time over the years, and our agency partners have been incredible in good times and bad. Our corporate partners have also really allowed us to connect with their teams from a volunteering and giving perspective. To think all of this has been going on for 100 years is amazing.
In your opinion, what positive change has UWBG made in the Bluegrass over the past 100 years?
It’s the rallying point to connect people who want to help with people who need help. I don’t think there’s another institution in our community that has done this as long, as well, or with as much heart as UWBG.
What is your favorite UWBG memory?
Back in 1993, we did a Night to Unite event at Memorial gym in Lexington. Agencies brought their clients and we put stories together of hundreds of people who had been helped by United Way donations and volunteers. We took their pictures and filmed videos and, out of that Night to Unite, we created a nationally award-winning PSA campaign. There was a poster with the faces of everyone who had been touched through United Way giving, which was amazing. I just loved to see the heart of everyone that came together that night to celebrate what makes us unique. The heart of the Bluegrass was really on display that night.
What’s your favorite place in the Bluegrass?
I like hiking at Red River Gorge and visiting our counties. I lived in Georgetown, but I always enjoyed visiting all of the communities that UWBG serves. There’s so much pride and history in every one of those communities, and visiting them is like going to history class.
What’s your favorite thing to do in the Bluegrass?
I loved going to UK games. I still rock the UK gear here in Florida now! I also enjoyed going to Thursday Night Live. That tradition actually began when I was the CEO of UWBG.
“It was a real honor for me to be a CEO of UWBG for 7 years. I am proud of the partnerships we were able to create during my time there. The volunteers were amazing and the team that I worked with was awesome.”
Thank you for being such a strong part of UWBG, Winston! We appreciate you and all that you've done.
Do you know someone who has worked alongside United Way of the Bluegrass in the past century who should be considered for our 100 Heroes series? Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to share your nomination!