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United Way : Connie Wegmann -2018 Woman of the Year

In recognition of her great work throughout the Beaufort community and surrounding areas, Connie Wegmann has been awarded the 2018 Woman of the Year Award. As a longstanding volunteer worker, Connie Wegmann is the epitome of this description for her community. She has passionately volunteered in the Beaufort community for over two decades.

   The 2018 Woman of the Year Award was presented to Connie at Women United’s Power of the Purse event sponsored by Beaufort Memorial on March 1st at the Dataw Island Clubhouse.  The Woman of the Year Award was created by the United Way of the Lowcountry Women United to honor the outstanding women in Beaufort and Jasper Counties who have made a powerful impact on the local community through their volunteer efforts, and who have served as a role model for inspiration and achievement of other women.

    Connie is an avid believer in volunteering in your community, and she encourages volunteering to everyone she knows.  She says, “I feel very blessed to have been given the opportunity to have extra time, which allows me to volunteer. It is important to do what you can, and never take life for granted.”

   Connie grew up in a military family, always moving around.  In 1994, she and her husband planted roots here in Beaufort when the military sent him here to serve.

   Connie’s dedication to the Beaufort community began during the 1990’s when her sons attended Lady’s Island Elementary School.  Connie quickly jumped on board and led the School Improvement Council, diligently working to enhance the learning environment for all students, eventually helping them transition to the newly built Coosa Elementary School.

   While her boys were young, she began volunteering with Parris Island’s Navy and Marine Corps Relief Society where she gave financial guidance and assistance to service members during times of need.  While with the NMCRS, she became the Chairman of Volunteers overseeing all the volunteers within the organization.

   She served five years as the treasurer for Beaufort Academy’s Blue-White Sports Club. She devoted countless hours to working concession stands and raising funds for the school’s sports programs. She and her husband, Jim, were even awarded the Halbert Award, Beaufort Academy’s Highest Award for years of volunteer service.

   As an active member of St. Peter’s Catholic Church, she has served as Sunday Greeter, Moms Ministry, worked with the church’s food pantry and St. Vincent De Paul Society.  She has worked in many capacities of the church’s major fundraisers including Fall Bazaar, Homes for the Holidays and St. Peter’s Oyster Roast and Micro Brew Festival.

    For the past four years, Connie has volunteered with the United Way of the Lowcountry, serving on the Community Impact Committee.  Due to her hard work on that committee, she was recently asked to take a leadership position as the Panel Chair for the Community Impact Evaluation.  In this capacity, Connie evaluates applications from agencies seeking program funding through the United Way. Her duties include the strict review of applicants, including a review of finances and site visits. Her work ensures that the United Way invests in programs that provide quality services and community partners with the highest levels of accountability and transparency. When a local agency needed guidance regarding financial matters, once again, Connie selflessly offered her talents to mentor the non-profit on fiscal accountability and stewardship.

   This year Connie worked with preparing backpacks for children in the community as part of Women United’s Operation Backpack, where more than 600 backpacks full of school supplies and uniform shirts were donated to children in need this school year.

   In 2014, Connie joined Dragonboat Beaufort (cancer supporter/survivor non-profit).  Connie was looking for an exercise opportunity and wanted time on the beautiful waters of Beaufort. However, the Dragonboat Beaufort Team realized her talents and she quickly assumed a supervisory role. Along with her stellar work ethic, Connie brought a wealth of knowledge from her background in both the accounting and community service areas. She swiftly and singlehandedly revived the charities Outreach Committee implementing a vetting and distribution system that, in just the past two years, has given over $40,000 in small, personal grants to nearly 160 neighbors in Beaufort County, who have been stricken with cancer.

   Connie is an active paddler and a coach for Dragonboat Beaufort’s competitive racing team, which serves as a form of physical and emotional therapy for those recovering from the devastating effects of cancer. This year, Connie will proudly serve as the Director for the Dragonboat Beaufort’s annual Race Day supervising all aspects of the charities premier fundraising event that will be held on Saturday, June 23rd from 8 AM until 4 PM at Waterfront Park.  There are several sponsorship opportunities ranging from $500.00 to $1500.00 for anyone wishing to participate and be a sponsor of this worthy event.  The Dragonboat Beaufort Race Day Festival in 2017 assisted 88 cancer patients in various areas consisting of utility assistance, housing assistance, transportation assistance, medical costs assistance and food assistance.

   A passion for volunteering, and a heart for giving, that is Connie Wegmann, the 2018 Woman of the Year.

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