2020 Power of the Purse Event Honors Molly Dobson as Woman of the Year

United Way of Washtenaw County Announces Molly Dobson as 2020 Woman of the Year

Leading Community Philanthropist to be honored

at Power of the Purse event March 3, 2020

ANN ARBOR, MI (December 16, 2019) – Leading community philanthropist, Molly Dobson, with a lifetime of giving back to the community, has been selected by United Way of Washtenaw County (UWWC) Women United group as the 2020 Woman of the Year. Mrs. Dobson will be honored at UWWC’s Power of the Purse event on March 3, 2020, at the Kensington Hotel on State Street.

“Molly Dobson exemplifies what the Power of the Purse initiative is about: women taking action to address community issues,” said Pam Smith, President of United Way of Washtenaw County and Power of the Purse committee member. “We are thrilled to honor her achievements and leadership at our event.”

Mrs. Dobson was chosen by the Power of the Purse committee for her exemplary leadership role in the community and her accomplishments in community leadership, philanthropy, and innovation.

“I am so humbled to have been chosen to receive this honor. Being honored by UWWC as the "Citizen of the Year" fills me with pride. Thank you from the bottom of my heart,” shared Mrs. Dobson. “It also triggers considerable nostalgia. As a donor, fundraiser and member of the Budget Priorities Committee and later, the Board of Directors of Washtenaw United Way, my WUW roots date back more than half a century. Since then, UWWC has come a long, long way!”.

One program Mrs. Dobson invested her time, energy, and philanthropy into was helping the University of Michigan develop the, D-SIP internship program, which provides undergraduates a unique, paid opportunity to prepare for a rewarding future in philanthropy. As a result, since its inception, 313 undergraduate students have completed the national award-winning internship program, with Molly personally funding 35 interns across 27 community organizations since 2009.

Women United is a United Way national network of some 55,000 members in 137 U.S. communities and the most successful philanthropic effort of its kind. Locally the UWWC Women’s Leadership Initiative has granted over $225,000 through the Power of the Purse event for programs that promote women’s success and self-sufficiency.

The UWWC established the Woman of the Year honor in 2009. Previous recipients include Dr. Lori Pierce, Cecilia Fileti, Cynthia Wilbanks, Verna McDaniel, Beth Fitzsimmons, Martha Darling, Pat Warner, Denise Rabidoux and Lucy Ann Lance. The 2020 event chair is Marjorie Dixon.



As part of our 98-year history, United Way of Washtenaw County brings people, organizations, and resources together to create a thriving community for everyone. We focus on Health, Education and Financial Stability, the building blocks for a good quality of life, to strengthen the community and create opportunities for individuals and families. Our Volunteer Center provides an easy online way for people to connect with nonprofits and our 2-1-1 helpline refers more than 8,000 people annually to critically needed services. To learn more, donate, or volunteer, visit uwgive.org.