The local United Way has named a former CEO of Legg Mason Inc. to lead its effort to raise more than $24 million for programs to improve education, financial stability and health for central Marylanders.

Mark Fetting, who left his position at the investment management firm last year, will kick off the campaign this month.

"Now is the time to do more for others," Fetting said in a statement. "United Way is the best combination of effectiveness and efficiency in responding to our community's greatest needs."

Fetting is also charged with raising awareness of the nonprofit-managed programs, including the Access to Healthy Food and Family Stability Initiatives, READ LEARN SUCCEED and 2-1-1 Maryland. The programs are intended to break the cycle of poverty by helping individuals become self-sufficient.

Patricia M.C. Brown — chair of board of directors for the United Way of Central Maryland, senior vice president of Johns Hopkins Medicine and president of Johns Hopkins Healthcare LLC — said Fetting's business acumen is an asset to the nonprofit.

"Mark's experience and commitment are invaluable in galvanizing the financial resources needed to improve education, financial stability and health for local families who are facing poverty," Brown said in a statement.

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