SJU Announces Start of 2011 United Way Campaign

Friday, October 21, 2011

Saint Joseph’s University, led by co-chairs John Smithson ’68, M.B.A. ’82, interim president, and Cindy Griffin ’91, M.B.A. ’93, head women’s basketball coach, recently launched the annual campaign for the United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania.

Last year’s effort saw over 100 faculty, staff, and administrators participate, including 14 leadership donors, who donated $1,000 or more. The generous contributions of Saint Joseph’s employees led to a successful campaign, netting $41,000 for the United Way.

This year, with the United Way’s growing need for support, Smithson and Griffin called on their colleagues to build upon last year’s successes and increase contributions in keeping with the University’s mission.

“Participating in the United Way Campaign, no matter the size of the gift, is a tangible way to live out the Jesuit ideal of men and women with and for others,” says Smithson. “The United Way exists to assist those in our communities who, unfortunately, have not been as blessed as most of us, or who have fallen on difficult times. As members of this Catholic and Jesuit community, we are called to respond to the needs of our neighbors. Participating in this vital campaign gives us an opportunity both as individuals, but perhaps more importantly as a community, to respond to that call.”

With each campaign, the co-chairs choose a specific organization or initiative as the focus. For 2011, Smithson and Griffin have chosen to support Saint Joseph’s own Kinney Center for Autism Education and Support.

“The Kinney Center is doing remarkable work for both those in our neighboring communities and for our own students who serve as Kinney SCHOLARS,” says Griffin. “John and I felt this was a way to highlight the important work of the Kinney Center, to continue our support of the United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania and to actively engage in the Jesuit ideal of being men and women with and for others.”

To learn more about the United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania, visit

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