Mike Pacowta New President and CPOShelton, CT (January 17, 2023) – The Valley United Way (VUW) board of directors is pleased to announce that Michael E. Pacowta has been named President and Chief Professional Officer. Pacowta brings a wealth of leadership experience and a passion for positive change within the organization’s five-town region of Ansonia, Derby, Oxford, Seymour, and Shelton. He succeeds Interim President and Chief Executive Officer David Kennedy, who retired on January 9. 


“The board of directors is thrilled that Mike will lead VUW. He will focus on building fundraising momentum to strengthen our partner agency’s impact within the community,” said board chair, Karen Stockla. “Mike first joined as Area Director in August 2022 and has consistently displayed the qualifications and expertise needed to drive the organization towards providing lasting change for the Valley.” 


Stockla added, “While we are excited about this new chapter of growth for VUW, the Board is grateful for David Kennedy’s leadership and guidance during the past three years. This was especially true during the pandemic, where he was instrumental in raising funds as part of the Valley Community Covid-19 Response and Recovery Fund, which supported community members who were severely impacted by Covid-19.”  


“I am excited to lead VUW by working with our generous donors, corporate and agency partners, volunteers, staff, board of directors, and community members to better understand and address the many challenges within the Valley,” said Pacowta. “I believe strongly in the work that our organization carries out and am certain that through our collaboration, we will be successful in delivering greater investment to improve the lives of those most in need.” 


Pacowta has a long-established presence in the Valley, serving as President of the Greater Valley Chamber of Commerce from 1991 through 1994, and as Mayor of The City of Shelton from 1985 through 1991.  


He also served for several years as President of the Greater Waterbury Chamber of Commerce and, immediately before joining VUW, held the position of Employment Specialist with TheWorkplace, Inc. 


About Valley United Way 

As a leading philanthropic organization in Lower Naugatuck Valley, Valley United Way improves lives by mobilizing the caring power of the community through philanthropy, volunteerism, and collaboration. For more information about the organization, visit its website at www.valleyunitedway.org or contact Mike Pacowta, President and Chief Professional Officer at 203-538-6349.  


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