Becca Titus has been on a non-profit journey.
Before volutneering with the Light of Lea County and CASA of Lea County, and before participating in several of fun runs and fundraisers, there was the United Way of Lea County.
“It all started with the United Way,” Titus said last week, after it was announced that she is the new President and CEO of the United Way of Lea County.
“Several years ago, I got asked to have a fitness talk with some people who were with United Way,” Titus said. “I was asked by (former UWLC President and CEO Kristi Martinkewiz) if I had ever done any volunteering and I had not at that point. Kristi asked about me joining an allocation committee and not knowing anything about United Way allocations, I agreed to join. That’s how it all got started.”
In the beginning Titus said all she knew about the United Way of Lea County was local businesses could donate and use that donation as a tax write-off. She eventually learned where the funding goes and whose lives it helps. Titus said once she understood all the good the United Way of Lea County did with its partner agencies, she fell in love with how United Way works.
“I thought it was so cool how you could connect all of these non-profit organizations with people to help give resources and people who need it, even for a short time, like a help up, with whatever agency, I thought it was so cool,” Titus said.
She volunteered on several United Way subcommittees as well as becoming a board member, but then previous President and CEO Linda Boes resigned in January to move home for family reasons.
“When Linda came in I thought she rocked it,” Titus said of Boes. “She came and changed things around and got some momentum going. Got some stuff behind all that she was doing.”
Originally Titus looked at the open position for a friend, but then she read the job description.
“I thought to myself ‘why wouldn’t you do it?”’ Titus said. “So I prayed about it. I gave my friend the job description, but I told her that I was going to apply for it as well. I felt like God was moving me into a different direction. I just felt like I was being led to do something different.”
Titus said she interviewed, was offered and accepted the position. However, she is currently working at the United Way on a part-time basis until May. For the past 16 years, Titus has been a criminal justice professor at New Mexico Junior College and wants to finish out the current semester for her students. She is also owner of the local fitness gym, Fitness Fury.
“Hopefully I will still teach part-time, online, for a couple of classes a semester. To help them out, and because I still love Criminal Justice,” Titus said.
With Titus sharing her time between her family, her work and her volunteering some things had to give. Along with her NMJC responsibilities, Titus stepped away from being a board member at Light of Lea County and CASA of Lea County, both of which are partner agencies with United Way of Lea County. She also stepped away from her spot on the United Way of Lea County Allocations subcommittee.
“I love it all, but I can’t do it all,” Titus said. “I have a lot of passions. I will still keep Fitness Fury. I had to resign from all of my boards, but I feel I will still be connected to them in a different way. In a way, I moved out of one house, but I am staying in the neighborhood.”
There are 15 local partner agencies: Light of Lea County, Hobbs Boys & Girls Club, CASA of Lea County, the Weekend Hunger Initative – Hobbs, the Boy Scouts of America, Salvation Army, Heart’s Desire, Option, Inc., Isaiah’s Food Kitchen, Opportunity House, Faith in Action, the Red Cross, the Girl Scouts of America, LEADERS and the Center for the Arts.
Titus’ excitement comes from what United Way of Lea County and its 15 partner agencies can do for the Lea County community.
“I want people to know what United Way is and for people to be excited about United Way and to say ‘yes I want to be a part of that. I want to volunteer’,” Titus said. “‘There are so many nonprofits out there doing great, amazing things that I feel I can help make that known. Because I have lived here all my life, and I have been so involved, so I have a lot of connections. And I feel like I can use those connections in such a positive way to make other people want to get just as involved.”