Women United

Dynamic Women Making a Difference  

Women United mobilizes a powerful network of women who strengthen our community through philanthropic investment, engagement and volunteerism and the influence of a collective vision to improve the lives and the future of girls.

Since 2002, the Capital Area United Way (CAUW) has energized women to join forces to impact the lives of middle school girls…a notably challenging time in a young girl’s life when numerous influences can steer girls in one of two directions. Through acts of philanthropy, volunteerism and other engagement activities, Women United aims to provide these girls with positive female role models and mentors, leadership programming, positive decision-making and coping skills and introduce them to a diverse range of opportunities for STEAM and other non-traditional career paths.

Formerly called Women’s Leadership Council, the mission of this effort is to mobilize the power of women to advance the “common good” in our tri-county region. Around the country, more than 160 local United Ways have Women United initiatives and have generated more than $1 billion for their communities from 70,000+ women donors. We encourage you to become one of those important philanthropists by donating through the button at the top of this site.

This year promises to be an exciting one for Women United as we welcome new members and re-energize the focus of Women United while tackling new issues, funding new programs and introducing new activities!

OUR IMPACT: Grants & Volunteerism    

CAUW’s Women United has financially supported its mission during the past 16 years by investing more than $250,000 in local program grants targeting middle school girls, including literacy programs, STEAM career exploration, self-expression through the arts, and prevention of violent or destructive behaviors. Through the generous philanthropy of hundreds of women, including one anonymous and generous benefactor, the funding awarded through Women United has opened the minds of nearly 1,000 girls in our local inner-city school district.

In 2017, we are placing additional emphasis on the power of volunteerism and mentorship on changing the lives of girls in our target audience. If you have interest in joining forces with other like-minded women in programs such as leading a middle-school girls’ book club or speaking at career days, please let us know.

                                                                        2022 Women United Grants


2022 Women United Grants

OUR ANNUAL EVENT: Lighting the Path Luncheon 

CAUW’s Women United’s signature event is the annual Lighting the Path luncheon traditionally held the first Wednesday of May. The luncheon features women leaders from our community who share the more personal side of their lives, including the struggles of juggling career and family.

The 21st Annual Women United Lighting the Path Luncheon was held on Wednesday, May 4th.featuring two very special guest speakers - Linda Sanchez-Gazella and The Honorable Cynthia M. Ward.  The luncheon featured an in person and live-streamed option via Zoom.

Women United Luncheon





Women United members


Chair: Luci Solis
Kristine Foley
Jamie Rabe
Leah Ann Sherer
Jayme Taylor
Jenny Thurber



For additional information or to receive our newsletter updates, please contact Merry Donn or call (517) 203-5018. Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/womenunitedmicauw