Consistency is not always easy to come by in life. For most nonprofits, their donors, programming, and mission are moving targets and require the organization to adapt.
United Way is lucky to have consistency and dedication in our friend C.H. Randolph (Randy) Lyon, who has been a champion of our organization since the 1980s and is Vice Chairman of Baird.
Randy grew up in Kentucky, where his family taught him the importance of giving back to others around him from an early age. He learned it from his grandparents, who were major supporters of their small Maryland community. He learned it again in college when he served as the vice chairman of Princeton’s annual campus fund drive. Giving back was always going to be a part of Randy’s life.
After graduating from business school, Randy began his career in finance at The First Boston Corporation, where he served in various roles in the firm’s New York and London offices. In those years, Randy’s civic engagement was focused on the schools he had attended. In 1982, First Boston asked Randy to take on a new management position in Chicago, and he accepted the opportunity with enthusiasm.
Within Randy’s first few weeks in Chicago, he noticed there were different expectations for professionals. “The Chicago ethos came out right away,” Randy recalls. The Chicago ethos was, and still is, an expectation to give back to the Chicago community and support charitable organizations. He learned about United Way of Metro Chicago and decided United Way would be a cornerstone of his philanthropic involvement.
“I felt that United Way was probably the best single way for one to invest if you care about the vitality of Chicago and its various communities and neighborhoods,” Randy said.
For more than thirty years, Randy has held true to that belief. He has introduced countless friends and colleagues to United Way, selflessly donated time and resources to the mission, and been actively involved in the Campaign Cabinet and Tocqueville Society.
To say Randy has been a consistent ally of United Way would be an understatement. He has been a steadfast champion of our mission to strengthen communities across Chicago.
Thank you for your continued support!