United Foundation Campaign Department Records

Accession Number: 
47 linear feet (47 SB)

Walter C. Laidlaw established the United Foundation in 1948 through the merger of the Detroit Community Chest and other Detroit charitable organizations. The goal of the United Foundation was to centralize fund-raising efforts and to generate mass fund-raising campaigns, such as the Torch Drive, which was first held in 1949. The United Foundation was closely affiliated with the United Community Services of Metropolitan Detroit, and became affiliated with the national United Way organization beginning with the United Way’s conception in 1970. The organization retained the name United Foundation until 1989, when it changed its name to the United Way for Southeastern Michigan to better reflect its association with the national United Way. It was known as the United Way for Southeastern Michigan until its merger with the United Community Services in 1995, when it became known as the United Way Community Services. The United Foundation’s Office of the President was responsible for overseeing and directing the various departments within the United Foundation. As the founder of the United Foundation, Walter C. Laidlaw served in this office from its inception in 1948 until his retirement in 1968. Upon his exit, H. Clay Howell succeeded Laidlaw as President of the United Foundation.

The United Foundation Campaign Department Records consist of correspondence, reports, minutes, proposals, program and event materials, and committee information reflecting the operations of the department, including the United Foundation’s relationship with participating agencies and the processes by which agencies requested and received funding from the United Foundation.

1950-1995, bulk 1965-1989
Attachment(click to download)
UR002533.pdfUR002533_guide.pdf269.67 KB