The Greeneville-based Holston United Methodist Home for Children has received $200,000 from The United Company Charitable Foundation, the first contribution toward a $1 million gift.
The donation was announced May 31 at the annual "Friends of Children" luncheon held this year at the Olde Farm in Bristol, Va.
James "Jim" McGlothlin, chairman of The United Company Charitable Foundation, made the surprise announcement following a passionate speech he gave about how the prosperous should care for those less fortunate, especially children.
"Whose children are they?" McGlothlin asked the large group of invited guests. "They are all of our children."
McGlothlin and his wife, Fran, and Nick Street and his wife, Fay, made the donation in honor of Lois Clarke, president of The United Company, a family friend who has worked with that company for many years.
McGlothlin is chairman and CEO of The United Company and one of the founders of United Coal Company.
He and his wife are renowned philanthropists.
Clarke noted that the donation was a "complete surprise" to her.
"I am overwhelmed by the generosity," Clarke said. "What a wonderful and blessed gift for the children of our area. My husband and family are very grateful for this honor."
McGlothlin presented Holston Home with a check for $200,000 at the luncheon and pledged to pay the remainder over the next five years, for a gift totaling $1 million.
"We are greatly blessed by this donation today," the Rev. Charles A. Hutchins, Holston Home vice president of development and church relations, said.
"We will be good stewards with this money, which will be used to help the children."
Arthur S. Masker, Holston Home's president and CEO, added: "We are most thankful for the generosity shown by this donation. It will impact the lives of many children and their families for some time to come."
Founded in 1895, Holston Home has the Wiley Residential Center in Greeneville, and family service centers in Johnson City, Knoxville, Chattanooga and Bristol, Va.
The non-profit organization serves around 400 children and families each day, according to a news release.