New chief operating officer named at Outreach

Published 11:04 pm Friday, December 3, 2010

Editors note: The following is a direct press release provided by the Thermal Belt Outreach Ministry. Nothing in the wording or phrasing has been changed by the Bulletin.

Eloise Thwing, who has led Thermal Belt Outreach Ministry as its executive director since its inception 20 years ago, has announced her retirement effective December 31, 2010, thus ending a remarkable era of dedicated service of helping others.

The board of directors praised&bsp; Thwing for her efforts that created an exceptional legacy of compassionate care that helps ensure that the needy in Polk County have shelter and enough to eat. Board president Diana Winkler said, We are forever indebted to Eloise for making Thermal Belt Outreach Ministry what it is today. &bsp;

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Winkler also announced the appointment of Carol Newton to a newly created position of chief operating officer effective December 1. She will succeed&bsp; Thwing as executive director on January 1.

Newton, who lives in the Lake Lanier area, said after the announcement, It is an honor to have been selected to lead Thermal Belt. I am enthusiastic about the opportunities that lie ahead for the clients, staff and donors involved with this ministry. Eloise has benefited so many people in Polk County. I am looking forward to working with her through this transition.&bsp; Her legacy will continue long into the future.

Newton brings to the organization extensive experience with both profit and not-for-profit organizations. For the past ten years, she was finance director for Peter Rock Consulting, Inc, a firm that has offices in Tryon and Charlotte.

In Tryon, Newton serves on the finance committee at Holy Cross Episcopal Church and the board of directors of Upstairs Artspace where she also heads marketing and public relations.&bsp;&bsp; In Charlotte, she conducted major fundraisers for St. Johns Episcopal Churchs outreach programs and for A Childs Place, an agency that helps more than 3,000 homeless children who attend Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools.&bsp;&bsp; &bsp;

Newton is a graduate of Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Winkler also stated that the board is planning a major appreciation dinner in honor of&bsp; Thwing in the late winter sometime near the 20th anniversary date of Thermal Belt Outreach Ministrys founding.

Thwing led the effort for churches within Polk County to pool their resources to create a unified effort of helping those less fortunate in the county who have no place to turn. Today, TBOM serves more than 200 families and 500 individuals each month, in addition to approximately 270 children who receive better nutrition each weekend as a result of Thermal Belt Outreachs Feed-a-Kid program.

In the first nine months of 2010, TBOM served more families than all of 2008. This past October saw service to a record number of individuals for one month and 31 percent more families than in October 2009. &bsp;

Thermal Belt Outreach Ministry received more than $400,000 in contributions during 2009 from Polk County churches, residents, businesses and other organizations. In addition to more than 7,000 hours from 125 volunteers during the year, TBOM received in-kind contributions of food, firewood and other commodities valued at more than $60,000.&bsp; Other than small grants from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (less than one-half of one per cent of its budget), TBOM receives no government support.&bsp;&bsp; It has four full-time and three part-time employees.

TBOM offices and food pantry are located at 134 White Drive in Columbus.