Here are photos recapping our UWLC Executive Forum held in October 2017 that included a panel discussion on technology’s role in business innovation.
To view the full photo album from our Executive Forum at Independence Grove, click here.
United Way Hosts Executive Forum Event on Business Innovation
On October 18th, we hosted an Executive Forum at Independence Grove in Libertyville. Over 120 business executives and community members gathered to hear from a panel of industry leaders sharing insights on using technology as a driver for business innovation. Our panelists included:
Jeff McRae, Senior Vice President of Strategy & Strategic Ventures, Allstate
Alex Wuerfel, Vice President of Global Marketing and Commercial Operations, AbbVie
Glenda Abbott, Director of Quality Assurance, Diagnostics Division, Abbott
Our panelists and speakers expanded and inspired thinking about the technology and innovation evolving now and the development of our youth critical for tomorrow.
To read more about our Innovation Event, click the button below.
for Leading the Discussion
Welcome to another Staff Spotlight! We love getting to introduce the incredible staff that makes all the work here at United Way of Lake County possible. Their stories and interests drive them towards creating lasting change in our community. This week we are introducing Robin Bultman, our Community Impact Coordinator.
I began in September 2004 as a temporary employee. Then I was hired on as a permanent United Way employee in March 2007.
I’m the Community Impact Coordinator. I manage the data bases for the department along with the online reporting site for our agencies. I also work on the www.findhelplakecounty.org site keeping it up to date with Current Topics, menu items and the Guided Search interface.
My first position was working with the Combined Federal Campaign, which was the Federal Government’s annual giving campaign. I saw how generous people were to help others and where the money went. I loved being around the staff at United Way, seeing all that they do and the impact that it has on our community, which made me want to be a part of this organization. It is so rewarding working with and seeing that the money that we raised is being allocated to much needed programs in our county.
There really isn’t any particular program that I connect most with. I mainly work on the databases that manage all aspects of Community Impact, which covers all of our programs. If I had to pick one it would be the Find Help Lake County website. This is a very important website where we need to get important information out to the residents in times of a disaster, keep them informed on current issues, and for them to easily search for the much needed help by the health and human service providers in the database.
Being able to develop and update the different websites, seeing the final product and the positive outcome it creates for the end users.
My husband and I love the outdoors. Camping, snowmobiling and riding our scooters. I also love working in my garden and spending snuggle time with our dog Princess.
Thank you for joining us this week for another Familiar Faces Friday. Check back next week for another Staff Spotlight!
On Wednesday, October 18th, United Way of Lake County hosted an Executive Forum at Independence Grove in Libertyville. Over 120 business executives and community members gathered to hear from a panel of industry leaders sharing insights on evolving technologies that have led to innovation in their industries.
Pictured from left to right: Vice Admiral (ret) Philip Cullom, Chief Innovation Officer (2014-2017), U.S. Navy, Jeff McRae, SVP – Strategy & Strategic Ventures, Allstate, Glenda Abbott, Director – Quality Assurance, Diagnostics Division, Abbott, Alex Wuerful, VP – Global Marketing and Commercial Operations, AbbVie and our Moderator, Dave Hoyt, Corporate VP, Daugherty Business Solutions.
Our objective for this event was to expand and inspire thinking about the technology and innovation evolving now and the development of our youth critical for tomorrow. Topics discussed included: Internet of Things (IoT), Digital Engagement, Big Data/Analytics and Cognitive Computing in various fields.
United Way’s Board Chairman, Andrew Warrington, shared how United Way of Lake County has broken from its traditional business model to shift its focus on developing programs to disrupt the cycle of poverty in Lake County, IL. As a result, United Way has developed more than a dozen unique and meaningful programs to address formerly unmet community needs. To learn more about our programs, click here.
To share a glimpse into our Better Together Program — continuing this fall at Green Bay Elementary School in North Chicago — we interviewed a mother who is participating in the program with her son.
The program allows me and my son to be together without distractions. I like that no phones are allowed. Plus, we both get to learn new things.
I have seen improvements in my son’s social skills. He is less shy and talks more.
My hope is that my son grows up to be prepared and that he tackles obstacles with an open mind. My dream is that he becomes a priest.
I will never forget the first Better Together session we attended where he first played and interacted with others. Because of this increase in interaction, my son is more prepared for daycare and school.
To read our past Better Together blog posts and learn more about the program, click here.
Welcome to Familiar Faces Friday! This week we are excited to introduce Michelle Crombie. Michelle is our Vice President of Community Impact. Continue reading to learn more about her and the work she does here at United Way of Lake County.
My first day at United Way of Lake County was 03 March 1993. I’m so pleased that I have been a part of this organization for 24 years!
I am the Vice President of Community Impact. I supervise all the things we do in the community.
It is wonderful to be a part of an organization that does so much good in the community. I feel honored to work with so many dedicated staff who do so much to ensure Lake County children and families succeed.
Since I work with all the programs, it is impossible for me to pick one favorite. I love that they all work together to create a continuum of care, supporting children from birth to career. I also love that we can measurably prove the programs are effective!
I love to open new doors for the children in our programs. There is nothing better than seeing a child master a skill, or a young adult complete a college application and know you had a part in it.
I am happiest when I am surrounded by my family. I love nature in all its forms and am passionate about protecting our environment. I spend a lot of time in my gardens and I read every chance I get.
Thank you for joining us this week for another Familiar Faces Friday. To read the Staff Spotlight from last week, click here.
We are thrilled to welcome Katherine Velazquez to our United Way of Lake County team. Katherine will be joining us as our AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) member working on our Success By 6 team. Join us in welcoming Katherine!
If you’d like to learn more about our past AmeriCorps VISTA, click here.
Our Better Together Program has started back up this fall at Green Bay Elementary School in North Chicago. We are thrilled to continue our Better Together blog series to give our supporters a first-hand look into this program and the children and families it serves. For our first post, we asked our Success By 6 Initiative Coordinator, Rosa Herrera, to give some history on this program and why it was developed in North Chicago.
United Way of Lake County’s Better Together Program was developed to increase services for North Chicago families with children birth to 3-years of age. Our Better Together Initiative started in the Fall of 2016, in a joint collaboration of Green Bay Early Childhood Center, our Women’s Leadership Council and our Success By 6 Program.
Success By 6’s goal in North Chicago is to improve key school readiness skills and improve parent engagement in learning for children ages birth to age five. With the implementation of Better Together in North Chicago we engage the child’s “special adult” to proactively explore and implement tools and techniques to become their child’s first teacher. In collaboration of the child’s “special adult” we help children develop age-appropriate social, emotional, and intellectual skills needed to begin school ready to learn.
Illinois Report Card (NC-SD 187) 2015-2016 demonstrates over 80% of its student population as low income students. While North Chicago faces many challenges, Better Together seeks to provide equitable opportunities to increase school readiness and lifelong success. We strive to create an inclusive environment where families feel comfortable and safe to support their child’s early development.
At Better Together you will find families who live in North Chicago and on the Great Lakes Naval Base. A camaraderie is formed as families understand they share a common goal of wanting their child to accomplish their dreams. We recognize that every child is unique with an array of strengths and abilities and meet the child and their families where they are at. At Better Together we understand the uniqueness of each individual; respect the diversity in families and children; and recognize that children are best supported and understood in the context of culture, family, community and society.
The families of Better Together are guided to create better outcomes for their child’s growth and development. Both adults and children develop a sense of belonging, self-worth, and ownership as they contribute to the group’s efforts, as well as learning how to effectively express themselves amongst others. By sharing their experiences they are connected and encouraged by other families who face similar circumstances.
Our commitment in Better Together is to create an environment where parents and children are exposed to learning tools they can use in everyday life. In every session we engage children on a variety of levels, whether it’s through interest-driven activities or encouraging them to learn a new skill; the opportunities are endless. Exposing them to such experiences promotes social, emotional and intellectual skills of children.
Through the application of a variety of materials such as, books, toys, and pictures, that are culturally responsive to our classroom environment families see themselves portrayed in the larger context of their community. By creating a solid foundation in which families understand that they play a critical role in stimulating their child’s growth and development, we carve a path to future success. Ultimately, with this solid foundation, Better Together children will have a greater chance of achieving their education and lifelong goals. Preparing them to become our future workforce, citizenry and leaders of our communities.
In October, we will share a mother’s perspective on the program. To view our past Better Together blog posts, click here.
Welcome to another in our Familiar Faces Friday series! We love introducing you to our staff here at United Way of Lake County and this week we are talking to Sue Baehr, our Program Manager for Reading Success.
I began working at United Way in October of 2009.
Program Manager, Reading Success
The importance of children being able to read proficiently is a priority to help ensure the next generation can grow up to be productive and independent adults. The fact that there are many children right here in Lake County that cannot read at grade level at the end of third grade was a big reason I wanted to be a part of United Way of Lake County. The focus and emphasis they place on education is helping to create stronger communities where we live.
Reading Success, because of the opportunity to help create lasting change for the students in our program.
Gosh, that’s a hard one! While I have a few favorite things, I’d have to say my favorite is connecting with my volunteer tutors. I tell people all the time that I have the best tutors there are. Many have been a part of Reading Success since 2009, and their dedication to this program is incredible. Their experience in the classroom has helped to shape Reading Success through the years, and make it stronger.
Outside of work, I enjoy spending time with my two, twenty something year old kids when time permits. I also spend time at the barn where my daughter boards her horse. In addition, I love to travel, both near and far, and look forward to planning my next getaway!
Thank you for joining us this week for another Familiar Faces Friday. Next week we are introducing Michelle Crombie, our Vice President of Community Impact. To read the Staff Spotlight from last week, click here.
We are excited to share our Leadership Directory recognizing our top supporters. Thanks to their continued support, children and families are on a path for success, and their future success ensures the success of our businesses and communities. For every program, every new initiative and every dollar raised, individual lives are being changed forever.
Click the button below to view our 2016-17 Leadership Directory.
You’re Invited: Power of the Purse
Our Women’s Leadership Council (WLC) invites you to their signature fundraising event on Sunday, November 5th at the Royal Melbourne Country Club in Long Grove. Enjoy a generous champagne brunch and an upbeat afternoon celebrating the special women in your life.
Proceeds from Power of the Purse will go towards the WLC’s Little Kids, Big Futures Philanthropy Fund. As of 2014, $235,000 has been invested in the Lake County community through the Little Kids, Big Futures Philanthropy Fund, an initiative directed by WLC members.
Space is limited. Click the button below to reserve your seat!
Kindergarten Countdown Camp Expands into Beach Park
Kindergarten Countdown Camp (KCC) is an initiative designed to bridge the gap for Lake County’s youngest learners, who have had little to no preschool experience, entering kindergarten this fall.
This summer, we expanded KCC into the Beach Park community serving two classrooms this past August. Each day, the children attending learned key kindergarten skills, such as recognizing shapes, letters, counting and writing their name. Children read books with their teacher and community volunteers to begin developing a love of reading. They also learned how to listen to their teacher, get along with classmates, and understand the routine of school.
During camp, we filmed a Facebook LIVE video capturing the children participating in a water investigation activity led by Kohl Children’s Museum. To view that fun, learning activity, click the button below.
United Way Days: August – September 2017
As the summer comes to a close, we’d like to recognize several companies and organizations that have been busy volunteering their time revitalizing school grounds, reading to students and making a positive impact in the community. We would like to thank and recognize O.C. Tanner, Baxter International, Hollister Incorporated, and ITW for taking time out of their workday to create lasting change in Lake County.
Click the button below to read more about the latest United Way Days that took place in our community in August and September.
Our Continued Partnership with the Chicago Bears
On September 10th, United Way of Lake County had a table at the Chicago Bears home opener game against the Atlanta Falcons. Our staff passed out materials on our education programs and held a raffle for a football autographed by Offensive Lineman, Kyle Long.
For over forty years, the NFL and United Way have partnered to strengthen communities across America. As the longest running collaboration between a major sports league and a nonprofit — the partnership provides a powerful vehicle for change in communities. Locally, United Way of Lake County and the Chicago Bears joined forces to create opportunities that encourage young people to get active and maintain healthy relationships.
Read more about our partnership with the Chicago Bears on our blog.
Summer 2017: Donation Drives
Throughout the summer, companies and local organizations around Lake County hosted donation drives collecting items such as, school supplies, furniture, clothing and much more. United Way of Lake County was able to find a home for these donated items with local schools and community organizations to help children and families in need of these items.
Read more about the donation drives that took place this summer on our blog.
Connect With Us on LinkedIn!
Did you know United Way of Lake County is on LinkedIn? Follow our company page to read the latest news and updates on our programs, volunteer opportunities and upcoming events. Click the button below to follow us!