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Recognizing 100 CEOs & C-level Executives
Christine Benero Mile High United Way

Christine Benero

President & CEO

Mile High United Way

Location: Denver

Founded: 1887

Industry: Nonprofit | Charitable Organization

Christine Benero has long recognized the power of supporting the next generation of titans. She has served as a mentor to countless individuals in the community and beyond and served on newly elected Denver Mayor Mike Johnston’s transition team to support the city’s new leadership as they work toward a fresh vision for Denver.

As the president and CEO of Mile High United Way, the first United Way organization in the world, founded in Denver in 1887, Benero is active in creating the next generation of leaders who want to create sustainable change in the community.

Mile High United Way has a mission to unite people, ideas and resources to advance the common good by supporting families. The nonprofit does this through a wraparound approach that focuses on basic needs, affordable housing, childcare and development, education and literacy, tax assistance, workforce development and small business support.

A two-time Titan 100, Benero said her greatest leadership lesson over the last year has been patience and urgency – two sides of the same coin. “Great and impactful change requires time and patience, but we must never relent on keeping a sense of urgency at the forefront,” she said.

Benero’s work to address the childcare crisis in Metro Denver is a great example of this lesson. During the pandemic, many parents chose to leave their careers because of the lack of affordable childcare, affecting Colorado’s ability to grow its economy and workforce. “Christine drove our community to unite around this issue, knowing it would take patience,” said her staff. “Now, four years later, through partnerships with elected officials, donors, employers and organizations, change is happening.”

By the end of 2024, under Benero’s leadership, a $20 million donation given to Mile High United Way from philanthropist MacKenzie Scott, will serve as the impetus for 280 new childcare slots throughout Metro Denver with the creation of four early childhood education centers.

“With our community’s ever-changing needs, Christine has built a nimble and flexible team at Mile High United Way, structured to be able to respond to emerging needs, while staying committed to our core mission,” said Benero’s staff.

As a leader, Benero said she could not create change without support, flexibility and adaptability. “The ability to surround myself with a diverse group of extraordinary leaders who challenge me, support me, inspire me and make me successful is my superpower,” she said. “Leaders must be willing to listen to all voices and create space for new and innovative ideas that can come from unexpected spaces – and then be willing to act with urgency.”

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The ability to surround myself with a diverse group of extraordinary leaders who challenge me, support me, inspire me and make me successful.


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