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United Way Chapter Reorganizes, Cuts Staff to Boost Confidence

January 31, 2003|From Associated Press

WASHINGTON — Following allegations of mismanagement, United Way of the National Capital Area laid off 28 of its 76 full-time employees Thursday in a massive reorganization designed to increase public confidence.

The organization, which raises funds for hundreds of nonprofit groups in the Washington area, has suffered a severe drop in donations after the ouster of Chief Executive Norman O. Taylor in September. In November, the chapter replaced its entire board of directors.

United Way officials acknowledge having held back donated funds from charities in the past and having covered overhead costs by deducting more than 50% from some contributions.

"We really want the public to see that we take the responsibility of stewardship of their money very seriously," said Robert Egger, the local chapter's interim executive vice president.

The organization's new board of directors unanimously approved the restructuring after reviewing recommendations from a task force headed by former Transportation Secretary Rodney E. Slater.

The job cuts, which enable the local chapter to save $2 million, come at every level of the organization, spokeswoman Lori Kline said.

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