United Way of Pennsylvania presented its highest annual award, the Keystone Spirit of United Way award, to York County resident Robert W. Pullo at a celebration hosted by United Way of York County on February 6, 2020.
The Keystone Spirit of United Way Award was created by the United Way of Pennsylvania to recognize exceptional and sustained volunteer and philanthropic leadership. The criteria for selection of an honoree reflect a philanthropic impact and personal commitment of time and talents reaching across community borders to highlight the interdependence and opportunities of the United Way network across Pennsylvania. The winner shows exceptional and sustained engagement with United Way in their own community, personal commitment to the voluntary system of human services as demonstrated by gifts of time and financial resources, with United Way being the main focus of his or her efforts, and a quality of performance that inspires others to serve.
“United Way relies upon the generosity of donors and volunteers to help make Pennsylvania communities stronger. Mr. Pullo’s commitment to York County is exemplary, and United Way is honored to be one of the primary ways he chooses to invest in his community,” said Kristen Rotz, President of United Way of Pennsylvania. “His leadership sets a strong example for all of us and we strive to follow his lead serving not just York County, but our entire state.”
United Way of Pennsylvania (UWP) presented the award at United Way of York County’s 2019 Campaign Celebration at the Valencia Ballroom in York, PA, to an audience of more than 400 United Way supporters and community members. The evening recognized more than a dozen companies and individuals who went above and beyond in the 2019 United Way Campaign, and announced the winners of the 2019 Campaign Prize Giveaway.
Pullo was nominated for this award by United Way of York County President Anne Druck.
“Mr. Pullo is a longtime donor, advocate and leader for United Way of York County, and a well-known champion for increased philanthropy with United Way and throughout York County and Pennsylvania,” said Druck. “He is an incredible example of what it means to choose service over self-interest. As a member of the United Way of York County Alexis de Tocqueville Society for more than two decades, his generosity and leadership has inspired others to echo his commitment to building a stronger, caring community.”
The Honorable Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf sent his congratulations, saying “Bob’s passion for community building and his commitment to United Way has made an incredible impact on York County, and will continue to do so for generations to come. As a member of the Tocqueville Society of United Way of York County, I am proud to join United Way of Pennsylvania in honoring Bob for his leadership and generosity.”
Biography of Robert W. Pullo, 2019 Keystone Spirit of United Way Award Winner
Robert W. Pullo is the chairman of the board and chief executive officer of Waypoint/York Federal Foundation. Now retired from banking after career spanning 47 years, Mr. Pullo joined York Federal Savings and Loan in 1976, successfully leading the bank to become a publicly traded company and accomplishing two ensuing mergers. He is considered one of York County’s most prominent financial leaders and most generous philanthropists, having raised more than $100 million for York-based nonprofits.
Mr. Pullo and his wife, Donna, are longtime members of the Tocqueville Society and staunch advocates for United Way of York County. Mr. Pullo served a five-year term as Chair of the Tocqueville Cabinet, during which membership increased 83 percent, and was an early supporter of United Way’s Focus On Our Future early learning initiative, which celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2020. Mr. and Mrs. Pullo are the first members of the Million Dollar Roundtable through a $1 million gift in 2002, the largest gift received to date by United Way of York County. They were named 2009 Philanthropists of the Year by Central Pennsylvania Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.
In 2018, alumni of the York Federal Fellows, a nonprofit leadership program founded by Mr. Pullo in 2006, launched Give Local York, a one-day “big give” fundraising event to benefit nonprofit organizations throughout York County. The event raised more than $3 million in 2019, with more than 300 nonprofits benefiting.
Originally from Somerville, Massachusetts, outside Boston, Mr. Pullo resides in York with his wife, Donna. They have four grown children, Robert, Jr., Julie, Susan, and Tracey; five grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.
Original painting presented to Mr. Pullo, artist: Tom Panei