Berkshire United Way Names Director of Volunteer Engagement

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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Berkshire United Way has welcomed Brenda Petell back to Berkshire County to join the staff as the new director of volunteer engagement.

Petell has demonstrated leadership and recruitment success in various roles with GE Plastics and SABIC, in Pittsfield, and most recently with General Dynamics Electric Boat and The Compass Group. Petell looks forward to being back in the Berkshires and serving the community in this new role.

"I am excited to join a team that is dedicated to improving the lives of Berkshire County residents. Having grown up in Hinsdale and spent most of my professional career in Pittsfield, I am excited to utilize my experience and connections to expand BUW's volunteer opportunities and to help individuals and companies find meaningful ways to give back to the community," Petell said.

Every year, BUW works with more than 150 workplaces and thousands of individuals to mobilize resources and volunteers to build a stronger community. Dedicating a position to volunteer engagement demonstrates BUW's commitment to identifying new ways for residents and companies to "do good" by engaging in both short- and long-term volunteer activities.

"In an ever-changing landscape, an increasing number of employers are requesting opportunities to augment their United Way workplace campaigns with meaningful volunteer opportunities," BUW CEO and President Candace Winkler said. "Brenda will work closely with our nonprofit and public sector partners to identify and cultivate impactful opportunities for individuals and teams to give back and match those opportunities with the generous people of the Berkshires who aspire to make our community stronger."

"We're excited to welcome Brenda back to the area and to our family at BUW. She is the ideal person for this job. During her time at SABIC, she spearheaded BUW's Book House project and was responsible for placing 50 lending libraries throughout the county. Brenda has a track record of mobilizing corporate partners for social good," Winkler said.

Petell was the 2016 recipient of BUW's Daniel C. Dillon Helping Hands, Caring Heart Award for her volunteer efforts in the county. In addition to her work with BUW, she led the city-wide science fair at the Berkshire Museum, sat on the steering committee for 1Berkshire's Youth Leadership Program and volunteered with Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity. She is also a 2007 graduate of the Berkshire Leadership Program.

Community members and employers are invited to reach out to Petell if you are interested in volunteering or coordinating a service project. She can be reached at 413-442-6948, ext. 18, or via email.


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