By Trent Moore
The Cullman Times
Following a recent search in the wake of former director Kasey Kearce’s resignation, the United Way of Cullman County has found its new director.
The United Way board has hired Sammie Danford, longtime director of the Cullman County Economic Development Office, to take over the agency effective July 8.
Danford was selected from 21 overall applicants, which were whittled down to four candidates. The post has been vacant since Kearce’s last day on May 10.
“We had so much interest in this position, and great qualified candidates,” search committee director Carl English said. “There’s a big job waiting, and we’re going right into the early fundraising campaign right now.”
Over the years while working for the county, Danford has been involved with numerous local civic and government boards — and English said it’s that commitment to serve that made her an obvious choice. English said Danford was the perfect hire for the post, and he believes she has the skills to grow and expand the operation.
“Everyone knows her, and you didn’t have to do any reference checks on Sammie,” English said. “She has a demonstrated track record, and she’s really almost the perfect candidate. We had some good candidates, but once Sammie put her name in the hat there wasn’t much doubt. She was the unanimous selection.”
(Read more about Danford here)
Danford said she is ecstatic to take the reins at United Way, and believes the role is a natural fit for her innate urge to “fix” things.
“I look forward to hopefully taking United Way to another level and continuing to work with all the wonderful people in Cullman County,” she said. “I think what comes natural to me is, I want to fix everything and make something better, and I think that’s what United Way does through all these organizations. They try to help and fix problems.”
Danford went on to thank the United Way board for the opportunity, as well as the numerous county officials she has worked with over the years for their support.
The United Way is the umbrella organization over several local non-profit charities, and serves as a logistical and fundraising organization to connect locals with assistance services. The United Way supports groups such as the Cullman Caring for Kids food bank, the Red Cross of Cullman County and the regional chapter of the Boy Scouts of America.
Trent Moore can be reached by e-mail at email@example.com, or by telephone at 734-2131, ext. 220.