2017 United Way Campaign: Let’s Rock for a Stronger Community

By September 26, 2017December 9th, 2020Community Volunteerism

Pictured: Gabrielle King, Peter Panageas, Monika Kreidie, Development Associate for TP4C, and Raffaella Bucco. Peter traveled to American Red Cross Eastern Pennsylvania Region, Frankford High School, AstraZeneca Hope Lodge-American Cancer Society and Variety - the Children's Charity of the Delaware Valley in celebration of United Way #DaysofCaring.

Do you know where your next meal is coming from? Do you have a safe place to sleep at night? Uncertainties such as these are a daily reality for the 600,000 men, women, and children living in poverty in the greater Philadelphia region.

Too often, families face these same struggles from generation to generation. Currently, one out of every two children born into poverty in our region will stay in poverty.

But there’s good news — each of us has the power to make a difference for our neighbors in need. It’s something Independence Blue Cross employees do all year long through our Blue Crew corporate volunteer program.

And every September, we join forces as a company to support the United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey and the work they do to address tough challenges in education, income, and health in our region.

During our two-week campaign, our employees will raise money and volunteer their time and talents to complete 11 United Way service projects.

Supporting the Communities Where We Live and Serve

We’re proud to co-chair the 2018 United Way campaign — Be a Community Rock Star. And we’re excited to share why we believe it’s vital to help lead our company’s mission to enhance the health and well-being of the communities we serve.

Peter: I’m a big believer in giving back to the community. At a time of great change in our industry, Independence Blue Cross remains committed to tackling challenges in our community. It’s a testament to our company’s leadership and our employees. I’m a South Jersey kid, and having grown up there, I’m especially proud of how we’re supporting the United Way’s work in our region.

Juan: I’ve participated in the United Way Day of Caring every year since I started with Independence Blue Cross. It’s one of the things I love about this company. Companies talk a lot about giving back, but you can really see it first-hand here. Through all the changes going on in health care, Independence Blue Cross has stayed true to its dedication to the community.

Juan Lopez pictured with Kim Carter-James. Juan, proud co-chair of the 2017 United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey Campaign, visited The Philadelphia Senior Center, Project HOME, Food Bank of South Jersey & Veterans Multi-Service Center in celebration of United Way #DaysofCaring.

You Have the Power to Rock Someone’s World

From our personal experience, we know you don’t have to drive a flashy car or have lots of fans to rock someone’s world — and your own — for the better.

Juan: When I think back over my career, there were points where I couldn’t give financially, but I still tried to make time to help people with my skills or just labor. To the extent that you want to give your time, you can do it. I would encourage you to remember that every little bit helps.

Peter: Whatever it is that you can give, there’s a huge emotional award. It lifts you.

Juan: I’ve met a lot of people through volunteering and developed my network, but that pales in comparison to the emotional lift I get from it. It can be a lot of work sometimes, but I find it invigorating.

Peter: I tell people that they should find time to work volunteering into their schedule. Whatever amount of time is comfortable for them. It’s not always about money. It’s about time.

Turn Up the Volume on Giving Back

There are two simple ways you can help Independence Blue Cross and the United Way strengthen our communities and end the cycle of poverty:

  1. Spread the word about our campaign through social media. Share this blog and our United Way posts with your family and friends on Facebook and Twitter using #IBXGives2017.
  2. Whether it’s your time or your money, any amount you give goes a long way toward making a lasting impact. Visit the United Way website to find out what organizations in our region need your support.

We can’t get no (no, no, no) satisfaction until all our neighbors have the resources they need to live to their fullest potential!


Co-authored by Juan Lopez

Juan Lopez is Vice President of Investments and Treasury Services for Independence Blue Cross.  In this role, Juan is responsible for the short and long term investment strategies of Independence Blue Cross as well as all cash receipt and disbursement functions for the company.  He reports directly to the CFO/Treasurer in this regard and manages a team of 80 employees.  With his former experience as the Corporate Controller, Juan brings a wealth of experience with the consolidated operations of the company.

Juan has more than 30 years of experience in finance, accounting and audit in the health care, financial services and banking industries. He is a CPA who graduated from La Salle University with a BS in Accounting and has post-graduate training in Six Sigma and financial leadership.

Peter S. Panageas

About Peter S. Panageas

Peter Panageas is senior vice president and market president — national for Independence Blue Cross. In this role, Mr. Panageas has profit-and-loss responsibilities focused on new business and retention for all groups 1,000+, including Large Local, National, Health & Welfare, Education, and FEP. Mr. Panageas joined independence as vice president of Sales in 2010. During his tenure with the company, he has implemented significant changes to the sales incentive program and improved the membership reporting capabilities to increase sales force effectiveness. Mr. Panageas is a respected client relationship leader with recognized expertise in new business creation, client relationship management, and innovative client solutions. Mr. Panageas received a bachelor of science degree from Rutgers University.