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Head of the Lakes United Way
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Amazing Advocate

Make a Choice, Make a Change

Dan Leslie: Minnesota Power and United Way advocate

When Dan Leslie’s business manager at Minnesota Power approached him about working for three months as a campaign executive for United Way of Greater Duluth, he decided to give it a try. Dan’s decision that day has led to 20 years of valuable involvement with United Way.

As a union worker, Dan had unique skills to offer as a campaign executive. During the 1993 - 1994 campaign season, he traveled to a variety of businesses on the North Shore and encouraged union workers to support United Way through workplace donations.

Dan’s advocating for United Way did not stop after his stint as a campaign executive. He continues to work at Minnesota Power, and along with upper management and a few fellow employees, conducts internal campaigns on behalf of United Way. For six weeks of the year, they take opportunities to educate employees about United Way agencies, and challenge employees to give back, and donate a part of their paychecks to United Way. 

Monetary giving is a way to be involved in the community, which Dan believes is essential. “In any given day we leave home for work, work all day, then go home and spend time with our families,” Dan said. “We rarely see needs in the community until we get out and  get involved.” 

Deciding to take a payroll deduction as a donation to United Way is easy, and deciding to make a difference in your community is a choice that will continue to give back. “Seeing the good work United Way programs provide and knowing in some way you've made that happen, it gives you that 10,000-foot, warm and fuzzy feeling,” Dan said. 

Dan currently serves as the secretary of the board for United Way of Greater Duluth, and has also been a member of the executive and governance committees. He is one of five board members that represent organized labor.

United Way on the North Shore strengthens communities by supporting health and independence, nurturing children and families, and meeting basic needs.

 Dan Leslie, AKA the "Chili King," presents awards at the 2012 United Way Chili Cook-Off Campaign Kick-Off

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