Meet Pat Sayler, United Way’s Community Investment Committee Chair
January 31, 2018
“The ability to deliver results,” answers Pat Sayler, when asked what is important to her when making recommendations on which agencies and programs should be funded by United Way of Monroe County. “It is about working together to create meaningful outcomes for those in need in our community.”
Pat was born and raised in Bayside, Queens, NY. She became involved in non-profit work at an early age with the influence of her parents who were active in community and church activities. Pat followed suit and became involved in numerous after school and community activities. After graduation from High School, Pat attended Hope College in Holland Michigan where she obtained a degree in Psychology, with minors in sociology and physical education.
Inspired to help those living in poverty, Pat joined the Peace Corps after graduation. She moved to Kongei, Tanzania in East Africa where she lived for three and a half years teaching English and History at the local primary school. Her years in the Peace Corps cemented her passion for service.
After returning to the US, Pat became the Counselor and Assistant Dean of Women at Philadelphia College of Bible. A role she held for four years. She spent a year in the Cayman Islands as the Assistant Manager of a hotel before obtaining her Masters degree in Personality and Social Psychology from The New School in NYC. Pat worked for the US Department of State’s International Visitor Program for several years, before moving to the Pocono Mountains.
An avid horsewoman from the age of four, Pat directed the Horsemanship Program for three summers at Camp Cherith in the Pocono Mountains. Pat was teaching English Dressage riding in Mt. Bethel when she took up an opportunity to become the therapeutic riding instructor for the newly formed Monroe County Easter Seals Riding for the Handicapped program in 1982. When Monroe County Easter Seals merged with Lehigh Valley Easter Seals, Pat became the Vice President of Easter Seals for Monroe County. The riding program became Easter Seals RISE (Riding Instruction for Special Equestrians), which Pat also Directed and Instructed, serving children and adults with disabilities. In 2001, the program became independent of Easter Seals and changed its name to Equi-librium, Inc. with Pat as its CEO.
While CEO of Equi-librium, Pat became involved with United Way as a volunteer for the organization’s then fund distribution process, and later as a United Way partner. “It was important to me to understand what United Way was all about before applying to become a partner,” recalls Pat. “It’s something I encourage others to do as well. If you are interested in understanding how United Way makes an impact in our community, volunteer to help with the Community Investment process. You quickly understand the value that United Way brings to the community in bringing people together to work towards a common goal.”
Upon retiring from Equi-librium in 2013, and in-between her international travels, Pat became an increasingly active volunteer in the community and remains so today. She is the Treasurer for the Monroe County Historical Association and is active on the Personnel Committee and the Choir for Zion United Church of Christ. Pat is an Accreditation Site Visitor with the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International and an active member of the Rotary Club of the Strousburgs. After several years serving on United Way’s Community Investment Committee, she was appointed as the Committee’s Chairperson by the United Way of Monroe County Board of Directors in 2016.
“I feel fortunate that I can use my understanding of non-profit program administration, finances and fundraising to help the community through my work with United Way,” says Pat. “I am so happy to be a part of an organization that brings so many great individuals and organizations together to help solve some tough challenges facing our community.”
Pat was the recipient of the United Way Evelyn Frederick Community Service Award in 2017, and continues to work hard to help make our community a better place. Pat currently resides in Effort, PA. And yes, she has a horse!