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Press Contact:
Victoria Hochman
Thompason & Bender
914-762-1900 x 24

United Way to Hold Imagine Gala March 15
Event to Honor PepsiCo, Inc., EVP and CareMount Medical, P.C., CEO

White Plains, N.Y, (Feb. 28, 2018) – United Way of Westchester and Putnam will honor two visionary leaders in the business community on March 15 when it holds its Imagine Gala at the Doral Arrowwood in Rye Brook.

Honorees will be Dave Yawman, Executive Vice President of Government Affairs, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary of PepsiCo, Inc., and Dr. Scott Hayworth, President and Chief Executive Officer of CareMount Medical, P.C.

“This year we honor two leaders in our community who represent the longstanding traditions of the United Way of Westchester and Putnam, but we also celebrate a new direction for our future,“ said Alana Sweeny, President and CEO of the United Way of Westchester and Putnam. “As we commemorate our 55th year, we have an exciting story to tell about new ventures and new relationships we have entered into to support our mission to put families living on the financial edge on a path toward self-sufficiency.“

The United Way Imagine Gala will feature a signature cocktail, dinner, silent and live auctions, and entertainment. Guests will be treated to imaginative surprises all evening. A Wine & Spirit wall offers an opportunity to win fine wines and the silent auction is well stocked with unique items and inspired experiences.

United Way is grateful to its sponsors which include Presenting Sponsor: PepsiCo; Bronze Sponsors: CareMount Medical, P.C.; Dr. Scott and The Honorable Dr. Nan Hayworth; IBM; Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP; Patron Sponsors: Barbara & H. Rodgin Cohen; DelBello, Donnellan, Weingarten, Wise and Wiederkehr, LLP; Northern Westchester Hospital, Northwell Health; PURE Insurance; George C Whipple III, Esq. & Victoria M. Whipple.

Special thanks to this year’s Gala Committee co-chaired by Ross Buchmueller, Megan Hurley, Esq., Michael D. Israel and John Gary Luboja, Esq.

For more information on tickets, please contact United Way at 914-917-6700 x725 or visit

About the Honorees

Dave Yawman is Executive Vice President of Government Affairs, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary of PepsiCo. Yawman assumed this role in November 2017, and leads the company’s worldwide legal, public policy and government affairs, and compliance and ethics functions. Yawman has nearly 20 years of experience at PepsiCo, spanning positions across PepsiCo’s businesses and former bottling group. Prior to PepsiCo, Yawman was an associate with the law firm Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson and served as a law clerk in the U.S. District Court. Yawman holds a B.A. from University of Notre Dame, and a J.D. from Rutgers University School of Law.

Scott Hayworth, MD, FACOG, has been President and Chief Executive Officer of CareMount Medical, P.C., for over 20 years, during which he has overseen a more than tenfold expansion in the size of CareMount Medical, P.C., and has earned a national reputation as an authority on multispecialty group management. Dr. Hayworth is an associate dean at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and a consultant to Massachusetts General Hospital. An alumnus of Princeton and Cornell University Medical College, Dr. Hayworth lives with his wife, former Congresswoman Dr. Nan Hayworth, in Bedford. They have two adult children, Will and Jack.

About the United Way of Westchester and Putnam

United Way of Westchester and Putnam (UWWP) works with government, business, non-profits and community leaders to solve complex problems. We focus on children, adults and families living on the financial edge. Our aim is to put them on a path toward self-sufficiency, so they might thrive and contribute to a stronger community. Our 2-1-1 helpline takes nearly 80,000 calls a year, providing online resources to resolve everything from basic to critical to urgent needs - heating, food, shelter, tax assistance, mortgage questions, childcare, natural disaster and crisis calls. We provide job skills training and financial education to adults. And we help more and more children and their parents to make sure children are reading on grade level by 3rd grade, a critical marker of academic success and future viability in our society.

UWWP is located at 336 Central Park Ave., White Plains, NY 10606.
Phone: 914-997-6700 Website: Facebook: ( and Twitter (@UnitedWayWP)


Press Contact:
Shannon Cobb
United Way of Westchester and Putnam
914-997-6700 x 720

Symposium Rallies Community to Increase Reading Rates
National Speakers to Address Successes across the Country - May 24

Yonkers, NY, (May 24, 2016) – Anthony learned to write his name in second grade, more than two years behind his peers. Pervasive homelessness and spotty attendance were the primary causes of his delays and costly wrap-a-round services were needed to get him back up to grade level by the end of third grade. But United Way is working to reduce costs to help kids like Anthony by reaching them earlier and with a wider network of people focused on the same things.

““It does not have to cost a lot to get our children back on track,” said Alana Sweeny, President and CEO of United Way of Westchester and Putnam. “By focusing on a few key areas such as attendance, engaging and reading to pre-K children, and summer reading loss, we can all make a huge impact in the lives of our children.”

That is why United Way of Westchester and Putnam is rallying the community together for a Reading Symposium in partnership with Yonkers Schools and BOCES. Attendees will include all members of the community who are interested in the future of our children such as teachers, parents, after-school professionals, foundation representatives, child care workers, literacy experts, local business leaders, elected officials and nonprofit staff.

Three keynote speakers will touch on how we can enhance literacy among children from pre-K into the early school years. The event will take place on Tuesday, May 24 at 1 Larkin Plaza in Yonkers, NY from 9:00 AM to 12:00PM. A special afternoon workshop is available for summer reading programs. There is no fee to attend.

“By bringing people together around an issue, we can find affordable, creative ways to improve the reading skills of children regardless of their economic background,” Sweeny states.

This symposium will bring nationally recognized leaders to present and share some of the best practices in reading instruction and literacy research. The three presenters are: Dr. Carol Connor, Chancellor’s Professor from University of California; the managing director champion for “Grade Level Reading”, Ralph Smith; and Dr. Susan Neuman Department Chair, Professor of Childhood Literacy & Education at New York University.  The presenations will share best practices in reading instruction and literacy research and begin a dialogue that will lead to community-wide efforts to bring all students to third grade reading proficiency

Ralph Smith calls himself a “recovering law professor,” but he acknowledges that his background as a corporate and securities lawyer helped him to appreciate the role of markets and the private sector and the value of cross-sector collaboration. As managing director of the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading since 2010, Smith has been forging consensus work across the country. The Campaign is a collaborative effort by foundations, nonprofit partners, business leaders, government agencies, states and communities across the nation to ensure that more children in low-income families succeed in school and graduate prepared for college, a career, and active citizenship. Smith made his early mark in academia by teaching corporations and securities regulation at the University of Pennsylvania, and also served as the Philadelphia School District chief of staff.

Carol McDonald Connor, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, is a Chancellor’s Professor in Education at University of California, Irvine. She is also a Distinguished Research Associate at the Florida Center for Reading Research. Her research investigates individual child differences and the links between children’s language and literacy development. The goal of her work is illuminating reasons for the perplexing difficulties children who are atypical diverse learners, including children who are deaf or hard of hearing, have in developing basic and advanced literacy skills. Awarded the Presidents’ Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE, 2008), the Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD, 2009) Early Career Award, and the Richard Snow Award (APA, 2008). Currently, she is the principal investigator for studies funded by the US Department of Education, Institute for Education Sciences and the National Institute for Child Health and Human Development, including the Early Learning Research Network and the Reading for Understanding Network. With her background in speech language pathology and teaching, she is well aware of the many challenges teachers face.

Dr. Susan B. Neuman is a Professor and Chair of Teaching and Learning at New York University in New York City specializing in education and early childhood policy. Previously, she has been a Professor at the University of Michigan and has served as the U.S. Assistant Secretary for Elementary and Secondary Education under George W. Bush. In her role as Assistant Secretary, she established government policies that we were targeted to improving the lives of people who live in poverty. She has served as Advisor on national and international boards, and has conducted many evaluations to better understand how community resources can be used to enable families to prosper in often-difficult circumstances. Dr. Neuman has authored 11 books that focus on how education and educational policies among them, “Changing the Odds for Children at Risk” and “Giving Children a Fighting Chance.”

United Way of Westchester and Putnam has launched the United2Read program in order to give teachers and parents the tools and resources to increase the reading rates of local children.

Third grade is a turning point for children because up until then they are learning to read, but after 3rd grade, they need to read to learn. Currently, 62% of children in Westchester and Putnam are not reading at grade level by the end of 3rd grade. This disturbing statistic is made even worse by the fact that more than four out of every five low-income students miss this critical milestone. Children who are not reading at this critical stage are 4 times more likely to drop out of school.

 “Our goal to double the percent of children reading at grade level by the end of third grade by 2026.”  Alana Sweeny, President of United Way of Westchester and Putnam, said.

To register for the event, visit or call 914-997-6700.

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