Continuing to Create a Legacy

First female board chairperson, Charlotte Lundsford Berry, visits UWABC to learn more about how to volunter her time once again.

Dan Leroy greets legacy, Charlotte Lundsford Berry, in his office at the United Way office space.

In early October 2022 United Way had the pleasure of hosting a true trailblazer in the Asheville and Buncombe County area and within our own organization. Charlotte Lundsford Berry, walked into the building a spiffy wearing a red suit with gold jewerly, at 91 years old she didn’t miss a beat. As UWABC’s CEO, Dan Leroy, walked Mrs. Lundsford Berry through the office spaces she was curious about the space usage, UWABC’s community partnerships, workplace relationships, and the standing of United Way globally. 

Mrs. Lundsford Berry’s interest was not only because she sincerely enjoys involving herself in the interest communities of Buncombe County but also because in the early 1980s  Mrs. Lundsford Berry was named the first female Board Chairperson of United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County. She has recently moved back to Asheville after first moving to the city in the early 1960s and still has the same vigor for volunteerism as she had when she first got involved with organizations like United Way and Redcross. 

During her time as an employee of United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County, she not only became the first female board chairperson but also set record highs for fundraising and was a frequent character in the Asheville Citizen-Times because of her, often, witty and exciting way of sharing the work that United Way was taking part in during the 1970s and 1980s. It is clear, however, that Mrs. Lundsford Berry’s enthusiasm for fundraising is still as fiery as it was 50 years ago. Mrs. Lundsford Berry and current CEO, Dan Leroy, tour United Way facilities.

As she sat down for coffee with Dan Leroy and several other UWABC staff members, she eagerly listened as staff explained the current happenings of United Way. A frequent topic of conversation was the United For Youth network, Community Schools, and the Bold Community Goal, which guides much of our work. Along with this, Mrs. Lundsford Berry gave her input on funding and encouraged the work happening in Ashville City and Buncombe county schools. 

Mrs. Lundsford Berry is an example of the expression, “age is but a number”, she continues to advocate for older adults to get involved in volunteer activities and she herself still involves herself in the work of Redcross and United Way. As our time came to end with Mrs. Lundsford Berry, she expressed interest in continuing her support for the work UWABC is doing and left with a positive and eager message, “I’ll be in touch about what I can help with.” 

Dan Leroy shows the progressing mural on the UWABC building. Charlotte Lundsford Berry tours the UWABC offices after working there 40 years prior.


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