Half a Century of Giving
Ellie (Goodwin) Cochran, a lifetime Manchester resident, recently celebrated a remarkable milestone. 2021 marks her 50th year as a proud supporter and volunteer for United Way. Ellie’s commitment to her community and public service is inherent. One could say that her involvement with United Way runs in the family.
Ellie’s parents, the late David and Dorothy Goodwin, were heavily involved with United Way as donors and volunteers. They were members of United Way’s Alexis de Tocqueville Society, a group of donors who generously contribute $10,000 or more annually to the United Way campaign. They also volunteered on several United Way committees and were honored for their efforts. One of Ellie’s earliest memories as a child is helping her parents assemble annual campaign packets for the Community Chest (United Way’s original name). As she grew up, her parents always encouraged her that “if we stay in the community, we need to be a part of what goes on here.” Ellie says, “United Way made that very easy to do.”
Ellie was introduced to volunteering for United Way during her senior year at the Derryfield School. When she graduated college, she started working for the New Hampshire Telephone Company and began her journey as a United Way donor. It was not long after this that she was invited to join the United Way Loaned Executive Program. Soon after, Ellie was asked to serve as a member of the United Way Board. Ellie and her husband, David, eventually joined her parents and other donors as members of the Alexis de Tocqueville Society.
Ellie organized the United Way campaigns during her careers at both the Derryfield School and the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation. “I had no idea that my future career would be philanthropy,” she said. “But working with the United Way and being on the Board opened that up for me in a whole different way.”
In addition to her career in philanthropy, Ellie took the values that her parents instilled in her and raised her two children, Sarah and Andrew, with those same values. She acknowledges the importance of encouraging the younger generation to give back and form relationships with members of their community and others across the state.
Fifty years later, Ellie continues to donate to Granite United Way and encourages others to do the same. She also works tirelessly to give back to the Manchester community in any way that she can. “I feel really lucky to be given the opportunity to give back to my community.”
Granite United Way is extremely honored to have Ellie’s support over the last fifty years. Her hard work and dedication have made a lasting impact on our community.
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