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Variety the Children's Charity Honors Two St. Louis Powerhouses as 2014 Man and Woman of the Year
Community Champion Lelia Farr and Energy Expert Tom Voss to be Honored at Variety's Annual Dinner With The Stars

ST. LOUIS, Nov. 13, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Variety the Children's Charity of St. Louis has named Ameren Corporation Chairman and CEO Tom Voss and community champion Lelia Farr as Variety's 2014 Man and Woman of the Year.  Each year Variety honors one man and one woman who play an active role in shaping the St. Louis community for the better.  The list of winners is a veritable Who's Who of St. Louis. 

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20131113/CG16241)

This year's Woman of the Year is a fiscal mastermind and a leading philanthropist in the St. Louis area.  Lelia J. Farr graduated from Wake Forest University with a degree in Economics, and Vanderbilt University with an M.B.A., and was a consulting managing director at Price Waterhouse. Farr gives countless volunteer hours to St. Louis non-profits and cultural institutions such as the Missouri Botanical Garden Board, Opera Theater St Louis Board, the Board of the St. Louis Art Museum and is a Trustee at Wake Forest University.

"Lelia encourages St. Louis cultural institutions to reach ever higher, becoming premier nationally recognized charity organizations," said Jan Albus, CEO of Variety the Children's Charity.  "We at Variety feel a kinship to her, as through our programs such as Variety Children's Theatre and Variety Children's Chorus we encourage our kids to dream big and support them to reach their goals." 

Together with her husband David Farr, CEO of Emerson, she also chaired the 2010 United Way de Touqueville campaign. David Farr was chosen as Variety's Man of the Year in 2010.

"Our 2014 Man of the Year is another St. Louis powerhouse. Tom Voss inspires the next generation to break new ground and push society forward as Variety does," Albus continued. "We admire how Tom works to improve the St. Louis business community and understands that strong businesses have a responsibility to support the non-profit community. Under his leadership, Ameren's 'Power to Fifty' Wheelchair Campaign for Variety just reached a significant milestone. Ameren and its employees surpassed their goal and donated a total of 52 motorized wheelchairs for Variety kids over the last decade, giving these children a means of transportation while helping them overcome physical challenges and achieve independence."

Voss, a native of St. Louis, is a graduate of University of Missouri-Rolla, University of Michigan's Public Utility Executive Program and the Westinghouse Advanced Power Systems School.  Starting as a student engineer at Union Electric in 1969, Voss worked his way to become chairman and chief executive officer of the 18th largest energy company in the United States.  He has been an influential business leader in St. Louis for many years, making it his mission to help aspiring engineers and boost community partners in the St. Louis area.  Voss is a strong advocate for the St. Louis business community and a tireless worker on behalf of many area non-profit organizations.

Voss serves on several local boards, including Civic Progress, Dance St. Louis (Chairman Emeritus), the MUNY, National Merit Scholarship Corporation, and St. Louis Regional Chamber as well as national industry boards of Edison Electric Institute and Association of Edison Illuminating Companies. Voss chaired the board of the Regional Chamber and Growth Association from 2011-2012 and currently is co-chair of "St. Louis 250" with his wife, Carol.  Voss has been a champion of diversity both within and outside Ameren Corporation.

About Variety the Children's Charity of St. Louis
Since 1932, Variety the Children's Charity serves children with physical and developmental disabilities in the St. Louis region, from infancy to age 21. Variety focuses on five core areas to help kids become independent and productive: gifting medical equipment for mobility and independence; developing unique education and recreational programs; funding therapy, and Sunshine Coach Vans. Variety partners with 75 agencies to support programs and give scholarships that directly impact the lives of Variety children.  For more information, visit www.varietystl.org

SOURCE Variety the Children's Charity of St. Louis