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The right person at right time

“The United Way” was almost a dirty word when Jane McIntyre took over in 2009. The organization’s previous president, Gloria Pace King, had been fired after a firestorm of criticism over her seven-figure pension and questionable expenditures. Donations dropped $14 million and the reverberations were felt throughout the community.

The United Way turned to McIntyre, a former school board member and head of the YWCA, for stability. She was the right person at the right time, making scores of changes big and small and slowly rebuilding the agency’s credibility. Now, five years into her tenure, McIntyre will retire this fall and leave a United Way that still faces significant challenges but that has a restored reputation and has fully put the King affair behind it. She deserves this community’s thanks.

McIntyre led the organization through a horrible economy and through a transition in how the public thinks about workplace-based campaigns. She grew annual giving despite a dramatic softening in those campaigns at some corporations.

Under her leadership, the board of directors shrunk to a more manageable size and the institution’s internal spending dropped almost in half. McIntyre also led a partnership with UNC Charlotte to conduct a “needs assessment” that determined the community’s most pressing areas and shaped United Way grantmaking to meet those needs.

She brought the United Way back from the edge, and is leaving it poised for even greater things. Happy retirement, Jane, and thank you!

Impeachment nonsense

State Sen. Norm Sanderson (R-Pamlico) now says he didn’t say Attorney General Roy Cooper should be removed from office, or that top leaders of the legislature were working to do so, as has been widely reported for about a week. He said the comment about impeaching Cooper for announcing in late July that his office would no longer defend the state’s same-sex marriage ban after the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals found Virginia’s similar law unconstitutional came from someone else at a recent tea party meeting he attended.

Sanderson’s legislative assistant Kathy Voss said Friday that the senator’s comments were “misinterpreted” and the comments about impeachment were made by “someone else in the room … and it was taken to be the senator.” The Carteret County News-Times reporter, Mark Hibbs, who first reported the comments, told BuzzFeed he stands by the story, where he quoted Sanderson as saying of Cooper: “If he’s not going to defend what we, the citizens of North Carolina, want him to defend, we need to probably impeach him because he’s been a vocal opponent of the marriage amendment ever since it was passed.”

Impeachment is a wrong-headed notion that Sanderson should be backing away from. Cooper’s decision was the right one. As we’ve noted earlier, the attorney general has decided not to waste the state’s time and resources on a fight that’s being decided elsewhere. That’s a responsible response.

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