Sue Parks

Sue Parks

 CHIEF EXECUTIVE, PRESIDENT, ORANGE COUNTY UNITED WAY

DAY JOB: Runs one of OC’s largest nonprofits, focus on homelessness and other critical challenges facing local children and families.

MAKING A DIFFERENCE: United Way’s Pandemic Relief Fund raised more than $3 million through May for vulnerable populations, including low-income individuals, families at imminent risk of homelessness and the current homeless population. Donations from Edwards Lifesciences, Allergan Foundation, City National Bank, Pacific Life Foundation, Insperity, US Bank, St. Jude Medical Center, Ducommun Foundation, SoCalGasand Wells Fargo, among others. Also launched “OC Family to Family” campaign, dedicated completely to homelessness prevention efforts.

NOTABLE: In addition to coronavirus efforts, leading United to End Homelessness initiative; local execs involved with effort include Chairman Larry Armstrong, Karl Kreutziger, Steve Churm, Charles Antis, Ernie Schroeder, more. United Way hosted its annual Women’s Philanthropy Fund Breakfast virtually; event featured Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.  

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QUOTABLE: “As we take steps to protect ourselves and our loved ones from the dangers posed by COVID-19, it is imperative that we also take immediate steps to protect the livelihood of our Orange County community,” Parks said. “There are many families struggling to make ends meet right now due to job loss or temporary layoffs. Our hope is that this money will help them make monthly rent and utility payments, or buy groceries. We’re grateful for support from the community and know we’ll be able to help many people.”

FAST FACTS: Parks is the founder of OC United Way’s Women’s Philanthropy Fund, which has raised $36 million since its inception in 2002. Parks formerly has served as CEO and co-founder of iCount Wellness at WalkStyles Inc., a leading corporate wellness program that integrates wellness into organizational culture. Prior to this position, Parks held executive roles at Kinkos, Gateway Inc., US West, and Zellerbach Paper.

2020 HOBBY: “My 93-year-old mom is a voracious reader.  My sister, sister-in-law, and I are doing a book club via Zoom with her every other week.   We are working through the fiction winners of the National Book Awards of the last decade!”