Speak United

Creating an Awesome Staff Culture

August 31, 2017

Mary Gwynne Dougherty

Vice President of Human Resources
Metro United Way




As Metro United Way's Vice President of Human Resources, my goal has always been to create a working environment for our staff that is the best in our community - one that fosters a culture of innovation, collaboration and engagement. Our employees are committed, skilled and compassionate. They often go well above and beyond their job responsibilities to make sure we’re doing all we can in the fight for education, financial stability and health for every person in our seven-county region.

Our staff values of Think We Before Me, Build Up, Own it and Break Through prioritize team and community over self, cultivate growth through succeeding and failing, demonstrate innovation and change, and foster personal responsibility and accountability. These values set the tone by which our team operates.

We also work to maintain our world-class employee engagement scores by providing a family oriented benefits package to our staff. These benefits support a work/life balance, while meeting the needs of our multi-generational workforce.

In 2015, we introduced new policies that allow staff flexibility in the hours they work and that provides a telework option for up to two days per week. Staff can choose to participate in "flextime" that offers employees an opportunity to choose the start and end times of their work days. We also have a fun dress down policy that many of our employees enjoy and participate in.

We're excited to announce a new policy and position on family leave and bereavement. Effective immediately, up to 12 weeks of paid leave is provided to the child bearing parent after the birth or adoption of a child. Six weeks is paid at 100% compensation, with an additional six weeks paid at 70% compensation. The policy also includes six weeks of paid leave for the non-child bearing parent, with four weeks at 100% and two weeks at 70%.

Employees are provided up to 4 weeks of paid leave to care for an immediate family member with a serious health condition.

In addition, employees may now request up to 10 days of paid bereavement leave to attend the funeral and take care of personal matters related to the death of an immediate family member. For bereavement leave related to non-immediate family members, employees may request up to four days of leave with pay.

By making sure employees have access to paid leave - including for child birth and adoption, or to care for an elderly or ailing family member - we are working to make sure all team members have the support they need to take care of their families. Together with our network of 99 partners, we strive to build a stronger community for all to live, work and raise families.

Join our team! Find job openings as well as more information about our values and culture on our Careers page!


Mary Gwynne Dougherty is the Vice President of Human Resources at Metro United Way and has held this position for the past eight years. Prior to that, Mary Gwynne spent 14 years in Human Resources in the banking industry, with two large commercial banks -- PNC Bank and US Bank. Throughout her career, Mary Gwynne has been focused maximizing an organization's most valuable resource -- their human capital. She has a bachelor's degree in Business Psychology from Miami University and has earned SPHR and SHRM-SCP certifications. In 2013, she was awarded the United Way Worldwide Human Resources Leader of the Year Award, and in 2015 she was named one of the 20 People to Know in Human Resources by Louisville Business First Magazine. She is a member of the Louisville chapter of the Society of Human Resources Management and volunteers with local schools and government organizations to help prepare prospective employees for employment interviews. She is on the board of directors of the United Way of Kentucky and Dress for Success Louisville, and has been elected to the City Council of Beechwood Village, Kentucky.