King tapped to lead United Way campaign

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 1, 2009

By Kathy Chaffin
Dr. Alan King has been selected as the chairman for the 2009-2010 Rowan County United Way campaign.
King, who went to work as an adjunct professor for the University of North Carolina at Charlotte after retiring from the Rowan-Salisbury School System, said he was honored to be asked to serve.
“I know we’ve had some great campaign chairs in the past that have worked extremely hard and have done a wonderful job,” he said. “I’m humbled by the opportunity and realize it’s going to be a great challenge, but I’m also very excited.”
King, who retired from the school system as assistant superintendent, has been involved with the Rowan County United Way campaigns throughout his educational career. He served as an account manager for several years and on the campaign cabinet as a division chairman for two years.
The United Way’s all-volunteer nominating committee recommended King for the chairmanship.
Dr. Jerry Chandler, a member of the committee and the United Way Board of Directors, said he was elated that King had accepted the position.
“He will do an outstanding job leading the campaign,” Chandler said. “This obviously is a challenging time for campaigns, but I know that he will bring a spirit to the campaign that will be very positive and he will bring excitement to the campaign because he’s a very creative individual as well.”
King said Rowan County is very blessed with great volunteers, which has helped the United Way to keep its administrative costs so low.
The Rowan County United Way also has a great administrative staff, he said, which helps to make volunteers “eager and willing to participate.”
“I also think people in Rowan County have a strong amount of confidence in our United Way,” King said. “A lot of people feel like government has gotten too big and this is an opportunity to give and the money goes directly to the needy. I think the citizens of Rowan County welcome that opportunity.”
He attributed the past success of United Way campaigns to the strong backbone of contributors. “I think that’s been the key,” he said, “and I don’t see that diminishing.
King said his first task as chairman will be to put together a campaign cabinet. “My goal is to have the cabinet complete by the end of May,” he said.
Even though the economic conditions may make the campaign more challenging, King said he thinks people understand that the needs are even greater during these times.
“I hope we can count on all of our traditional donors and then we want to reach out to folks who haven’t given before,” he said. “There’s a lot of excitement during the campaign with the car giveaway and the downtown kickoff.
“I hope everybody in Rowan who is fortunate enough to be able to give will want to come forward and be part of this,” he said. “I’ve just always felt that service to others is an extremely rewarding endeavor, and when people feel like their gifts are helping to make a difference in other people’s lives, they’re going to want to give.
“I feel like the United Way in Rowan County exemplifies that giving opportunity.”
King began working for the Rowan-Salisbury Schools as a teacher at Corriher-Lipe Junior High, then became an assistant principal at China Grove Junior High.
After that, he was the principal at China Grove Elementary for 11 years and South Rowan High School for another 11 years before being named assistant superintendent.
King retired from the school system more than two years ago after four years in the position.
A native of Rowan County, he graduated from East Rowan High School and Lenoir-Rhyne University.
His wife, Joy, teaches second grade at Millbridge Elementary School. They have two children, Drew, who is a business development manager for ACI Solutions, a technology company in the Washington, D.C. area, and Caroline, who is a marketing agent for the Grubb and Ellis commercial real estate company.
Contact Kathy Chaffin at 704-797-4249.