Who We Are
Women United (formerly the Women’s Leadership Council) is a local force of over 920 women! The largest network of women in South Hampton Roads, Women United provides the opportunity to connect, inspire and empower women to take action in our community. Women and children in need are breaking the cycle of poverty due to the support of Women United.
Women United began in 2002 with a passion to put South Hampton Roads’ at-risk women and children on a path toward success. One woman inspired three others to join her in securing this important work by creating an endowment fundraising $185,000.
These women inspired others to become powerful philanthropists through leadership, fundraising, and advocacy. They began an initiative called “10 for 10,” recruiting 10 women each year for 10 years to each donate $10,000 for making our community a better place to live, work and raise a family. They are now known as the 100 Women United, and their story gets even better.
Women United’s Joan Brock, Marianne Dickerson, Jane Batten and Susan Goode (pictured left to right below) pledged a combined $3 million Challenge Match to encourage each of the 100 Women United to give another $10,000! In less than one year nearly $4 million has been pledged, with gifts still coming in. The Women United Endowment Fund is the largest in the nation and is fast approaching $7 million in assets and expectancies with these additional gifts.
Since 2005, Women United has invested more than $600,000 in community programs, including the H.E.R. Shelter, Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast, The Up Center, United for Children, and YWCA in partnership with Tidewater Community College.
Moving forward, these powerful philanthropists continue to help children and their families break the cycle of poverty. This two-generational approach is making a very positive difference in our neighbors’ lives and lifting up our community.
Employees of Norfolk Southern and United Way spent the morning of Jan. 26 loading up two trucks for an important delivery. At-risk students at four Norfolk elementary schools were about to receive 1,200 new books and 500 backpacks. The four schools are affiliated with...
Stone Soup volunteers prepare meals for 2,300 at local shelters More than 150 Women United volunteers and guests came together Feb. 3, 2018, at the 7th Annual Stone Soup event. They converted thousands of dollars of groceries into meals for the hungry. In less than...
United Way, GEICO present 200 books to PB Young students “Is this real?” the student asked. “I get to keep this book and bring it home?” The teacher answered, “Yes, this is real – and that is your book to keep.” Smiling from ear to ear, the young boy hugged his book...
Be a part of the solution!
Board of Directors
Darleen Mastin, Chair
10 for 10 Council
Ashely Galler, Chair
Lelia Graham Webb
Megan Padden, Co-Chair
Elizabeth Shumadine, Co-Chair
Jane Short, Chair
Odette Bonvouloir, Chair
Stephanie Adler Calliott
Paula Smith, Chair