Honoree: Kimberly Koontz
Honored by: UnitedHealthcare
Cause Area: Healthcare
Kimberly Marsh-Koontz: A Volunteer Who Cares
The words care and teamwork have special meanings for Kimberly Marsh-Koontz and the volunteer work she does on behalf of UnitedHealthcare.
She has been with the Cypress-based company as an analyst for three decades and has been involved over the years in a diversity of community service projects all around Orange County and beyond.
She likes to volunteer because, as she puts it, she’s concerned about doing right and helping those less fortunate. “I just like giving back,” she says about her motivation. “It’s something that’s needed. It’s something I’ve also instilled in my children since they were small.”
Kimberly has enjoyed being a strong inspiration to her co-workers and building team spirit among those she has recruited as volunteers. She has gone above and beyond in her efforts to organize and lead her co-workers. She has relied on the firm’s ambassadors program and works through departmental groups, known as charitable activities and recreation events (CARE) clubs, to piece together teams for a mix of causes and campaigns.
Over the past year, for example, she led her groups on adopt-a-family holiday gift projects, backpack drives and Easter basket giveaways for local organizations, including the Boys & Girls Clubs in Cypress and Camp Pendleton. The work traditionally begins with many in-office fundraising efforts, such as bake sales, which provide the funds for the materials and goodies used for the activities.
One of the new special efforts she introduced was this past summer when she gathered volunteers to help build little jars of toys on behalf of the Jessie Rees Foundation. The gifts were donated to a camp attended by kids who have cancer.
“We have a great team of people here that I enjoy working with,” she says about her ongoing efforts to go above and beyond by coordinating a regular schedule of activities each year. “They all pitch in. We all work together, we have laughs. It’s fun.”
Recently, Kimberly has been personally involved with supporting the Heart Walk, a campaign sponsored by the OC chapter of the American Heart Association.
But otherwise, she has targeted her volunteer service for those efforts that can take advantage of the ready support her company offers and the hands-on assistance from co-workers who are eager to sign up for tasks and events.
“I admire Kimberly for the way she has shown leadership and the way she shows how much she cares. It’s very inspirational, and she is deserving of recognition,” said Rob Falkenberg, CEO of UnitedHealthcare of California.
A new effort that Kimberly is optimistically planning for this spring is participation in the Shelter’s Right Hand Walk, a fundraising event for a local women’s and children’s crisis shelter.
When you have a caring approach, and rely on good teamwork, as Kimberly does, a lot of good is guaranteed to happen.