Awards & Recognition


At our LIVE UNITED Celebration, held Thursday, March 23, 2017 at Baker Lofts Event Center in Holland, Greater Ottawa County United Way recognized the outstanding companies and individuals who helped advance the common good in our community by giving, advocating, and volunteering. 

The following five criteria are used to select award recipients. Some awards are given when 3 of these criteria are achieved, while others require 4 of the 5 criteria to be achieved.  When a company achieves all 5 of the following criteria, it receives the prestigious Community Builder Award.

  1. An increase of employee giving from the previous year
  2. At least $175 average employee gift
  3. 50% or more participation in campaign giving
  4. Employee volunteer involvement (with United Way internally, Day of Caring, or corporate volunteer projects)
  5. Three or more employees giving at the Lighthouse Leadership Circle level ($500+)


Recognizes top organizations that exemplify a year-round partnership with United Way, including participation in Day of Caring, Community Investment and a commitment to workplace volunteering.

The companies below met all five of the award criteria listed above:

  • Anderson Technologies

  • Brilliance Audio, Inc.

  • Children’s Advocacy Center

  • Falcon Corporation

  • Grand Haven BLP & UWUA 582

  • Grand Haven Custom Molding

  • Greater Ottawa County United Way

  • LightCorp

  • Macatawa Bank


A Gold Award is presented to major firms who meet 4 out of 5 of the award criteria.

The 2018 Gold Award recipients are:

  • Bekins

  • Consumers Energy - JH Campbell Complex

  • Fifth Third Bank

  • Haworth, Inc.

  • Huntington Bank

  • JSJ Corporation

  • Legal Aid of Western Michigan

  • Mercantile Bank

  • Shape Corp.

  • Spectrum Health

  • Trans-Matic Mfg. Co., Inc.

  • The Chamber of Commerce Grand Haven, Spring Lake, Ferrysburg

  • Woodward


A Silver Award is presented to major firms that meet 3 out of 5 of the award criteria.

The 2018 Silver Award Recipients are:

  • A.D. Bos Vending Services, Inc.

  • Automatic Spring Products

  • Catholic Charities West Michigan

  • Center for Women in Transition

  • Coopersville Area Public Schools

  • County of Ottawa

  • DeLong & Brower, P. C.

  • Dryer Architectural Group

  • Elzinga & Volkers Construction

  • First National Bank of Michigan

  • GHSP, a JSJ Business

  • Herrick District Library

  • Hope College

  • Howard Miller

  • ITW Drawform

  • ODL, Inc.

  • Perrigo

  • Sekisui SPI

  • Semco Energy

  • Spectrum Health Zeeland

  • Community Hospital

  • Warner, Norcross & Judd

  • West Michigan Community Bank

  • West Michigan Molding

Volunteer of the Year Award

The recipient of this award exemplifies a spirit of volunteer service to their community by giving their time and efforts to Greater Ottawa County United Way, as well as other organizations in the community.

2018 Recipient:

  • Randy Kortering, Haworth, Inc.

Pinnacle of Partnership Award

The recipient of this award exemplifies a commitment to improve the quality of life for Ottawa County residents through leadership in service and education as well as a year round partnership with Greater Ottawa County United Way

2018 Recipients:

  • Grand Haven Area Community Foundation
  • Community Foundation of the Holland/Zeeland Area

Out-of-the-Box Award

Recognizes the organizations who took the box, shook it up, and ran the most creative, fun and interactive campaign.

2018 Recipient:

  • Shape Corp.

Joe Martella Above and Beyond Award

This person goes above and beyond what is expected of a campaign coordinator. They are constantly looking to add excitement to the campaign, help others realize the importance of United Way and encourage volunteering.

2018 Recipient:

  • Heather Middleton, Woodward

Lynne Sherwood Lighthouse Leadership Award

This award is bestowed upon a United Way campaign company that demonstrates the greatest increase in leadership giving, or to an individual, couple or family whose community leadership sets an example for others to follow.

2018 Recipient:

  • Grand Haven Custom Molding

G.W. Haworth Strength of the Community Award

Recognizes the company and/or individual who most embodies United Way's leadership, spirit of volunteering, philanthropy, and decision-making in the allocation of philanthropic resources to our community.

2018 Recipient:

  • Bari Johnson

Past recipients:

  • 2001 - G.W. Haworth

  • 2002 - Patrick Thompson
2003 - Lynne Sherwood

  • 2004 - Tim Parker

  • 2005 - Edward & Nancy Hanenburg
2006 - Donna Cornwell

  • 2007 - Richard Haworth
2008 - Shape Corporation

  • 2009 - Grand Haven Area Public Schools

  • 2010 - Jeffrey W. Beswick

  • 2011 - PADNOS
2012 - JSJ Corp. and its businesses: Dake, GHSP, and izzy+

  • 2013 - The Bos Family: Thomas G. & Jane Bos, Thomas J. & Laurie Bos, David, Megan & Tommy

  • 2014 - Steve and Sandy Moreland

  • 2015 - Larry and Jeanie Koops
  • 2016 - The Verplank Family
  • 2017 - Mark Wilson

2018 Community Investment Panel Awards

5 Year Awards:

  • Brad Burrows

  • Susan Klooster

  • Gary Kunzi

  • Joann Paul

  • Chris Streng

  • Barbara VanHeest

  • Michael Wade

3 Year Awards:

  • Nataly Berckmann

  • Kathy Bye

  • Joe Patterson

THANK YOU to all those who gave your time and energy to our campaign!