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Fighting HungerHelping CommunitiesLeadership Thoughts

Hunger Doesn’t Follow the Calendar

Many of us are aware of the hunger epidemic during the holidays, but often summer is the worst time for hunger in America, especially for children. This ongoing, ever-present need is exactly why we chose fighting hunger as WoodmenLife’s National Community Focus.

I had no doubt that our nearly 700,000 members nationwide and nearly 2,000 Sales and Home Office associates would step up to the challenge when we officially launched this focus in January 2015. But these individuals and communities have far exceeded my expectations.

It’s not just the hundreds of thousands of pounds of food and money donated; it’s also the enthusiasm, commitment and selflessness I encounter nearly every week. It’s the accounts I hear of how happy WoodmenLife members are to help. Their energy is contagious, and WoodmenLife’s efforts to fight hunger continue to grow.

Just last month, we held raffles and a food truck event to support Strike Out Hunger here in Omaha. In total, we raised $17,877 here at our corporate headquarters to support Food Bank for the Heartland. It’s exciting to make a difference in Omaha, where we also got to welcome the College World Series and celebrate WoodmenLife’s 127th Anniversary.

Beyond Omaha, we have opportunities to help local communities in every state. Please join us in the fight! To help raise money for a hunger charity in your area or to make a monetary donation, visit (WoodmenLife covers the administrative fees so 100% of donations go to the cause.) To volunteer your time, contact your local Representative to learn how to get involved.


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Patrick L. Dees

Patrick L. Dees

As a man who jumps at any chance to travel to a beach, it's unlikely Patrick L. Dees thought he’d end up in the cold Midwest. A proud Texan and an animal lover, his more than 30 years with WoodmenLife span from active member as a youth to Sales Representative to, as of 2017, President & CEO. As the organization’s 13th president, he leads the charge in moving WoodmenLife into the next generation while preserving the values we’ve held close since our founding in 1890. Along with his wife, Michele, he spends spare time with their five children and six grandchildren (so far).