Chartered as the "United Givers Fund" in 1956, the new organization raised $36,000 in its first year. That was four times more than the local Community Chest raised the year before in 1955. Chartering board members of UWRCC were Cecil Adams, Clyde Fite, Earle Rees, Donald Knight, Jack Weatherford, John Bragg, Hollis Donnell, Ellis Gray, Sam Lasseter, Frank Clardy, Bernard Goldstein, W.E. Landers, Q.M. Smith, J.D. Swartzbaugh, and J.J. Jewell Jr. Three of the founding board members were present to celebrate United Way's 50th Anniversary Celebration in 2006.
In 1956, the United Way partnering agencies consisted of The Council of Social Agencies, Bradley Cafeteria, Crichlow Cafeteria, McFadden Cafeteria, United Defense Fund, Traveler's Aid, Franklin Heights Nursery, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, and the USO. Among its current 69 partners, United Way has funded the Boy Scouts and the Girl Scouts throughout its existence.
In 1982, the United Givers Fund was transformed into the United Way of Rutherford County under the leadership of Dot Harrison, the first female board chair. The organization began serving Cannon County in the early 1990s, and in 2005 the name changed to United Way of Rutherford and Cannon Counties.
The United Way grossed $100,000 in 1968, $1 million in 1991, and $2 million in 1999. The 2011-2012 campaign reached $3 million.
Today, the United Way of Rutherford and Cannon Counties takes pride in being an accountable, efficient and transparent community impact organization and partners with 69 different programs impacting education, health and financial stability in our community.