Helping to Change the Story: Mark Zigterman

by Kierstin Nall

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After ten months of unemployment, Mark Zigterman was contacted by a temp agency about an opening at United Way. While he didn’t know it at the time, it would be the beginning of a new journey. Filled with a renewed sense of hope, Mark began his new job at United Way in January 2006 as a Finance Assistant.

Living as “middle class” in the region since the 1980’s allowed Mark to live a blinded life. “You don’t often know how big the problems actually are. We don’t always tend to think about those that are struggling,” says Mark of his life before United Way. “I always knew about United Way. I knew that they were a good organization, but I was never really involved.”

Through his employment, Mark began to learn more about the role United Way plays in the community. “We don’t just fund organizations, we support programs. We provide leadership, accountability and expertise while focusing on the most important issues.” Mark is happy to work for an organization that focuses on the three pillars that he believes are tied to one another: Education, Income and Health. “If a family is dealing with health or financial issues, they cannot focus on education.” Mark comes from a family of educators and fully believes in the work and mission of United Way: To advance the common good by creating a better life for all.

Today, as a Senior Accountant at United Way of the Battle Creek and Kalamazoo Region, Mark works his magic with numbers to ensure United Way’s accounting records are accurate and monitors financial procedures and internal controls. He works hard to ensure United Way can be as effective as possible and he is taking on new roles, such as grant accounting.

“I get up every morning, and I enjoy coming to work. I have a passion for accounting, and I know I am helping make a difference in this region with every number I crunch and spreadsheet I create.”

United Way continues to be successful because of the dedicated employees, volunteers and partners, like Mark. Mark is helping change the story.