Interim United Way leader offered executive director job

  • Staff File Photo/Domenic Poli Staff File Photo/Domenic Poli

Staff Writer
Published: 11/6/2022 8:22:58 PM

GREENFIELD — Geoff Naunheim can drop the word “interim” from his job title, now that the United Way of the Franklin and Hampshire Region’s board of directors voted unanimously to offer him the executive director position.

Naunheim, 35, lives in Hadley, and joined United Way in October 2017 after having worked in the development office of a free public book bank in New Haven, Connecticut. He moved to western Massachusetts when his wife got a job at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and has spent most of his United Way tenure running its Community Investment program, which he said is the process through which decisions are made about how community funds are distributed and which local nonprofits to partner with. Naunheim carries much of these responsibilities into his executive director job, which he accepted on Tuesday.

“The job hasn’t changed a whole lot for me, going forward,” he said. “It’s really just keeping things on track in the direction we’ve been moving.”

Naunheim became interim executive director earlier this year when John Bidwell stepped down. The executive director handles fundraising, grants and community support, operations, engagement and outreach.

This United Way chapter has about 50 partner agencies serving an estimated 5,000 people across Franklin and Hampshire counties. The two United Way chapters merged on July 1, 2021. United Way raises money for dozens of partners in a local network of social service agencies. The agency also uses a community-driven process to identify the greatest needs in the region and to decide which agencies are best positioned to address those needs, and then it allocates resources accordingly through grants.

“The board of directors is really pleased that Geoff will continue in the executive director role after his period as interim ED,” Andrea Sell, board president, said in a statement. “He brings a great deal of experience from within the organization, knowledge of the region and our partner agencies, and strong leadership skills. We look forward to Geoff’s role in shaping the future of our United Way.”

Naunheim assumes the role as the United Way of the Franklin and Hampshire Region is in the middle of its 100th community campaign, with the goal of raising $1.4 million. United Way has distributed more than $50 million locally in the past century.

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