Ashleigh & David Riehl
Leading and Championing Millennial United Way Engagement
For as long as Ashleigh and David Riehl can each remember, their parents were prime examples of active leadership and volunteerism in their respective communities, from their churches growing up to the Knights of Columbus, the Red Cross, and many others. This upbringing put them on a path that would bring them together. “We met at Saint Vincent College and credit our time there for further fostering our interest in serving the community together; the Benedictines focus on leading by example and showing their faith through their deeds and actions,” says Ashleigh. And now as a famiy, they have worked to instill a sense of responsibility to the community in their three children.
The Riehls also work in two companies with strong ties to United Way, SAP and Hefren-Tillotson. Both organizations emphasize the importance of making time to give back. “We were connected to United Way through our employers and started participating in the workplace campaign activities which kept us coming back. We have supported United Way as donors and as volunteers since 2012,” says David.
Ashleigh and David also feel passionately about supporting nonprofits that benefit children and families. Collectively, their board involvement includes CASA of Westmoreland, Jeremiah’s Place, and the Western Pennsylvania Diaper Bank. They also founded The Good People Network, a nonprofit focused on promoting philanthropic opportunities in the Pittsburgh area.
Despite their extensive non-profit involvement, they both agree United Way has been an important learning experience. “United Way does a tremendous job of identifying the needs in our community and how best to deliver resources to support those needs. I saw this firsthand when I was able to help interview applicants for Impact Funding. I met with Action Housing, a local agency who has a wonderful program that helps foster children transition into adulthood. Without United Way, we never would have known about this program or how to support it,” says David.
As members of the millennial generation, Ashleigh and David are excited to see more of their peers become more active philanthropists and have challenged their friends to always do more. “In times of need, Pittsburgh has always stepped up to help. This has never been more evident than this year,” says Ashleigh. “We believe that having a leader like United Way in place ensures that the most pressing issues are identified and addressed quickly. The United Way’s network of agencies and supporters allows them to spring into action and direct resources where they are needed; that structure would not be possible without the consistent support from annual contributors to United Way. We’re proud to be among them.”