With 18 presenting boards and another 20+ boards in attendance, there will be no shortage of non-profit board opportunities on Tuesday! Who will be there and what are they looking for? See the list of boards below along with links to their website…feel free to check it out before the event so that you can make the most of the CharityScenes Social 2017!

Presenting boards (will have individual tables at the event)

1) Albany Park Community Center (APCC)

2) Esperanza Health Centers

3) Chicago Community Tool Bank

4) Girls on the Run - Chicago

5) Chicago Foundation for Education

6) San Miguel School Chicago Auxiliary Board

7) Family Focus Associate Board

8) Marillac St. Vincent Family Services

9) Deborah's Place

10) Heartland Alliance Associate Board

11) Young Women's Giving Council of Chicago Foundation for Women

12) I Am We Community

13) TLP

14) Chicago Public Library Foundation

15) Urban Gateways Associate Board

16) Field Associates

17) Snow City Arts

18) Young Professionals Board of Special Olympics Illinois


Attending boards (will have at least one member present)

19) Girl Scout of Greater Chicago & Northwest Indiana

20) American Diabetes Association Young Professional Leadership Council

21) City Year Chicago Associate Board

22) Playmakers Associate Board

23) Associates Board of Sarah’s Circle

24) Women's Global Education Project Young Professionals Board

25) HealthConnect One

26) Josephinum Academy Junior Board

27) Chicago Lights Associates Board

28) Changing Worlds Associate Board

29) American Red Cross of Chicago and Northern Illinois Auxiliary Society

30) UNICEF Next Gen

31) Turning the Page Advisory Board 

32) Emerging Leaders Board of the CLSW

33) HOW Associate Board  

34) Lincoln Park Community Shelter Associates Board

35) Chicago Arts Partnership in Education Associate Board

36) Citizen Schools Associate Board

37) Forest Preserve Foundation

38) Associates Board of the Chinese American Service League 


​How to make the most of your experience at the CharityScenes Social

Whether you’ll be heading to Joe’s to find an opportunity for board service, to network with non-profits, or to just enjoy a drink on a cold January evening…you’ll be in good company. Here are some tips to help you make the most of your experience!


·Be thoughtful about what you want to get out of the event and potential boardexperience – do you want to volunteer more? Do you want to develop some skills like event planning or take on a leadership position? What is your ability to donate to the cause and pay dues? Are there specific non-profit areas that most interest you like education, health, or social services?


·Sell yourself – don’t be afraid to articulate what you bring to a board. Many boards just want young professionals who are dedicated and interested in the cause. Others might have specific needs like a social media manager, a finance professional or someone connected in a particular industry.


·That said…keep an open mind – you might be attending with the goal to join a specific board, but be open to new causes and new connections. Last year’s event not only matched young professionals with boards, but attendees discussed careers, best practices for existing boards, and more!


·Bring your business cards!


·Bring a friend and stay awhile tickets include one drink and appetizers, but additional drinks will be available for purchase and attendees are welcome to stay at the bar afterwards to socialize, eat, watch sports, and more!

December 2016 Associate Board Spotlight: Family Focus

CharityScenes: What’s the mission of the Family Focus Associate Board?


Kelsey Miklos: The mission of our Associate Board is to generate awareness for Family Focus and its programs in the Chicagoland area. We do so by hosting fundraising events, and events to benefit the participants at the Family Focus centers, such as our Holiday Toy Drive and Holiday Party. We also aim to help connect young professionals with other socially conscious individuals, and provide the opportunity for professional and personal growth.


CS: How does the Family Focus mission differ from that of other early childhood organizations?


KM: Family Focus’ mission is to nurture children by strengthening families. Our programs are aimed to assist our communities by helping them to become better parents and confident caregivers for their children. We’re different because our programs are different. Our home visits are the bread and butter of how we help our participants learn more about how to be more effective parents. We work with them to recognize their child’s developmental milestones andto stimulate their child’s growth within their culture and traditions. In addition to working at home, our participants have a support system at our centers, which double as community gathering places. Not only do Associate Board members get to help support Family Focus fiscally through fundraising, but by also working directly with our participants at the centers. Seeing the people you are aiming to work for creates a much deeper connection.


CS: What kind of personal commitment do the Associate Board members make?


KM: We ask that our members attend our monthly Associate Board meetings and participate in committee communications outside of regular meetings, and assist in planning and running our events each year. In addition to our fundraising events, we encourage our board members to achieve a minimum give/get amount per fiscal year, though most board members shoot well beyond that.


CS: It sounds like the board members are really dedicated to the mission, then! Why do you think they are so successful in their personal fundraising?


KM: I think our members are so great about shooting past their expectations because they know that the services that Family Focus provides are very important and really do make a huge difference. In the changing world of social services, they understand that what they do matters and are very dedicated to making sure that we can continue to provide the quality programs we do. Several of our Associate Board members have been around since the very beginning and their passion for Family Focus is truly impressive. After only joining Family Focus’ staff three months ago, I was pleasantly shocked at the level of dedication. All of them have very busy jobs but their passion and work for the a-board never changes.


CS: What are some of the most meaningful experiences your board members have had through their service?


KM: The annual Holiday Party and Toy Drive is a favorite for many of our Associate Board members. For many of our participants, these parties are the only holiday celebrations they will get to experience. Being able to provide a cheerful holiday experience for our participants where not only can the children have fun, but the parents can enjoy spending the time with their kids, is amazing to see.


Our Associate Board President, Adriana Urdaneta Camachoheld a focus group with some of the participants last year to learn how to improve the event. This is just one great example of how our a-board gets to work directly with the people they’re fundraising for. She had this to say about how it went and why it was particularly rewarding:


“Our focus group with moms was great. We had about 5 moms who participated in last year’s toy drive and holiday party, who we got together to get feedback on what worked and what we could improve from last year. From their feedback, we have planned a more organized event with a wider range of activities in a bigger space, worked with the center to include a performance from the kids, and hired a local DJ to provide music. They shared their experiences of homelessness—one mom shared her story of moving into her first apartment around the holidays last year, and not being able to afford gifts for her children—and how Family Focus has had an important role in supporting them and helping them get their life on track.”


CS: How wonderful to have the opportunity to forge direct connections with the organizations’ participants! With the holiday season coming up, can you tell us more about these two events?


KM: I’d be happy to! The Toy Drive benefits our Lawndale center. We collected wish lists from participants and then entered their wish list items in an Amazon Wish List so that anyone can purchase items for the kids.  The items will be sent us where they will be wrapped and given to the participants in the latter half of December. The Toy Drive is entirely an a-board project, which is nice for the participants to not only get an extra gift—or for some, the only gifts—but it is an event that does not add more stress to the Lawndale staff thanks to the a-board.


We distribute the gifts at the Holiday Party, which is also held at Lawndale. This year the party will be on December 14th and we’re still looking for volunteers and food donations! The event will include a meal, holiday-themed games, dance and singing performances by some of the Lawndale participants, and music by DJ Rae Chardonnay, who teaches spinning classes to underprivileged kids in Chicago. If anyone is looking to get involved with volunteering at this event, they can contact me by email!


CS: Sounds like a great way for prospective members to get involved!


KM: It absolutely is!We are looking forward to growing in numbers in the coming year. Our board recently lost some members that had been with us for years, so we are looking forward to welcoming some new faces and new talent to our board. As we grow we would like to take on some larger projects, including more direct service with the centers.


CS: Excellent! How can someone reading this blog post get involved?


KM: Anyone interested can email me, Kelsey, at for more information. I also encourage them to take a look at our website, Facebook ( and Twitter (@FamilyFocus_org) to learn more about what we do and our programs.

October 2016 Associate Board Spotlight: Cook County Health Foundation

Cook County Health & Hospitals System (CCHHS) is one of the largest public health systems in the nation, serving as the safety net for health care in Chicago and suburban Cook County and caring for more than 300,000 patients each year. Today, CCHHS is transforming the provision of health care in Cook County by promoting community-based primary and preventive care, developing a robust, collaborative health plan, and enhancing the patient experience. For more information about CCHHS visit

CharityScenes recently sat down with the two founding members of the Cook County Health Foundation Associate Board (CCHFAB), President Josh Sorin and Vice President Lindsay Zimmerman. They formed the board in 2015 to support the Cook County Health and Hospitals System (CCHHS) and the Cook County Health Foundation. In their own words, the CCHFAB is starting a movement in the Chicago and Cook County community! Read on to find out more about the great work the board is doing.

CS:  Hi Josh and Lindsay! Tell us more about the CCHFAB.

CCHFAB:  First and foremost, it’s about increasing awareness of the CCHHS among the young professionals community and in Chicago. CCHHS is such a huge, important public asset that young professionals need to know about. Then, we’re raising money, both for the hospital system and specific causes within the system. The final goal is laying the foundation for the future philanthropic support of CCHHS. If you look at other hospitals in Chicago, they all have large foundation bases, and while they are all absolutely worthy causes, the CCHHS is just as important. We’re trying to educate young professionals now to establish a relationship of support for the future.

CS:  That’s smart. You mentioned you’ve raised money for some specific causes within the system. What’s one of those you supported recently?

CCHFAB:  This year, our focus was on food insecurity. The hospital system worked with the Greater Chicago Food Depository to identify individuals who are food insecure, meaning they don’t have access to fresh fruit and vegetables, which is something that has an impact on health outcomes. We had a fundraiser in July to help bring ‘fresh trucks’ to CCHHS clinics. These trucks…imagine a big 18-wheeler that’s decked out with a grocery store. People can actually go to this and they can collect fresh food and produce to feed their families. We raised over $18,000 for fresh trucks. It’s an example of how CCHHS is in a direct position to help address social determinants, which is why we started the board in the first place.

CS:  That’s right! You’re the founding members of the board. How’d everything come together, and what were some of the challenges you faced in getting to the point you’re at now?

CCHFAB:  It was actually pretty serendipitous. Having been exposed to CCHHS through volunteering or consulting, we each were asking similar questions of Dr. Shannon, the CEO of CCHHS:  Do you have an associate board? And then, can we start an associate board? He put us in contact with each other and we got to work. We built the board from scratch, there wasn’t a template we were working from. So we started with the objective and then built out how they’d get there. Who are the right people we need to get involved early on? And of course, we’re starting with a $0 budget.

One major challenge was finding good people, since the people involved on the ground are what makes this work. We started by pulling from our own networks with people who were interested and passionate and ready to help make this come alive. Another big challenge for us was that we know we’re not the only Associate Board in town, so what makes us different specifically? Why are we a worthy cause that people should get involved in? CCHHS is in a unique position where they’re so critical to the foundation of the city of Chicago and Cook County. For that reason, supporting the hospital system isn’t just supporting the clinics and hospitals, it’s really a vote for the city of Chicago and Cook County—there’s the intersection of healthcare but also social and human services.

CS:  It sounds like CCHHS is an awesome organization to be supporting. What is so unique about the system?

CCHFAB:  It all comes back to addressing social determinants of health—these are things that have an effect on someone’s health. It includes housing, it includes food insecurity, violence in your community—all issues that any major city, but specifically Chicago, faces. Who’s in the best position to impact change on those determinants? Well, the CCHHS has a network of clinics that expand throughout Cook County, so they’re in a lot of these underserved communities that face these challenges. When you think about “If I care about the city and the community, where is the best place to put my support and energy?” CCHHS is not just a hospital focused on what’s inside the four walls, it has a network throughout Chicago and the county and in many of these underserved communities.

CS:  That’s amazing! So what types of events do you all have?

CCHFAB:  Well, we do fundraising, but we’re primarily focused on awareness, because we know that the money we raise is going to be a drop in the bucket in terms of the size of the problems we can address. We really want to start a movement of young professionals that starts to address some of these social determinants in the city. These problems will not be solved purely by fundraising, but will be solved with everyone being aware and ready to make a change in their city.

One of our recent events was free and had renowned physician Dr. David Ansell advocating on behalf of CCHHS and bringing people together to have a larger conversation. So it’s not just our group talking about how we can address social determinants of health, but we have events where we can bring the conversation to larger groups of people.

CS:  Love what you said there about trying to start a movement, that’s powerful. Tell us more about the board itself.

CCHFAB:  We’re around 22 members now, but our target size is around 30 so we’re looking to grow a little more. It’s a really diverse group of young professionals, several who work in healthcare, but also people who work in other industries and just have an interest in supporting the cause. We have people who work in consulting, banking, work for startups, are CEOs of their own startups, individuals who have clinical backgrounds, like nurses, doctors, and even people in PhD programs. The thing that ties us all together is of course an interest in healthcare, but also the wellbeing of our city and public health in general.

CS:  So it’s not a requirement to have a background in healthcare to join?

CCHFAB:  Nope, not a requirement, we just want individuals who are passionate about the cause and want to be involved. We are currently accepting applications for our board on a rolling basis, so we review them each month in time for any new members to attend the next meeting.

CS:  Anything else about the board that we haven’t covered yet?

CCHFAB:  Something that’s very important about our board is the structure, because it ties our mission together with a focus on the community. We have four committees in addition to the executive committee. Our events committee develops, coordinates, and implements events. Our marketing committee helps with promoting the board as a whole. Our membership committee is focused on existing members and plans networking events within our group. But then we have our volunteering and community development committee. This committee strategizes these community efforts, and really figures out ways we can interact with other organizations to address these social determinants of health and tie it back to the CCHHS mission.

CS:  What’s the next step to get involved for those who are interested?

CCHFAB:  To learn more, go to, check us out on Facebook (, and Twitter (@CCHF_AsscBoard). If you’re interested, we’d like you to start by having a conversation with an executive board member so you have a better idea of what we do. You can email us at

September 2016 Associate Board Spotlight: Marillac St Vincent Family Services

One of the most rewarding experiences an associate board member can have is direct experience with the nonprofit’s mission and clients. The Associate Board of Marillac St. Vincent Family Services (MSV), our October Board of the Month, builds these experiences into its annual event planning and everyone benefits. Read on to find out more about this great organization.

CharityScenes: Tell us a little bit about the Associate Board!

Meredith Oney: The Associate Board is a fun way for young professionals to get involved with our mission here at Marillac St. Vincent Family Services. The goals are to raise awareness and fundraise for MSV, while organizing volunteer, social, and fundraising activities. We currently have about 35 members, most ranging in age from 25-35. Our doors are always open to new members who want to learn more about our mission, our associate board, and how to get involved.

CS: Sounds great! What, in your mind, makes this associate board stand out?

MO: One of the ways is how the group comes together. Our best recruiting tool by far is word-of-mouth from our members. They seem to enjoy their participation so much that it’s easy for them to bring friends and acquaintances on-board. The group has a really strong dynamic and a truly organic recruitment method, so that’s really special.

CS: What does the annual calendar look like for the MSV Associate Board?

MO: The Associate Board’s calendar runs from fall to spring, with a break over the summer. We have three main fundraising events every year, the first of which is a Bears watch party and bags tournament coming up on October 2—anyoneinterested should come along! We also have a flip cup tournament in January that’s always really fun and popular. Finally the Board’smarquee event, House of Cards, is a casino fundraiser will be held this year on April 8, 2017. We have over 250 attendees each year, and these events always serve as great recruitment vehicles for our organization.

CS: I can imagine; they sound like a great time. Tell us a little more about your programming events.

MO: The Board plans volunteer opportunities throughout the year. One event they annually participate in is the Willie Morristhree-on-three basketball tournament at Marillac House, our center in East Garfield Park. This event in particular helps our associate board members connect with our mission in a really personal way. They are able to connect with our kids and experience how critical Marillac House is in providing a safe space for kids to just be a kid. They really understand the role they play in the MSV mission and it helps empower and motivate them to make a difference through their involvement. It’s been a really fulfilling and meaningful experience for them.

If you’re interested in learning more about this great group of young volunteers, check out for more info! And be sure to check out the Bears Game Watch Party on October 2, tickets still available here:

August 2016 Associate Board Spotlight: Snow City Arts


Snow City Arts was recognized in 2007 by the White House as one of the 15 best youth programs in the United States. Now almost 20 years in operation, they continue to grow and inspire us by improving the healthcare experience for children in hospitals through arts education. Children battling various illnesses are introduced to the visual arts, music, theater, creative writing, and media arts. Through these programs, the kids are given the opportunities to learn and create that their healthy peers are enjoying in school.


How has Snow City Arts been so successful? They’ve grown their dedicated volunteer base and generous donor base through a series of great events, a number of them hosted by the Auxiliary Board. Mai Vukcevich, Membership Chair and member of the Board Resource Committee for the Auxiliary Board, recently spoke with CharityScenes about what it’s like to be on the board and part of such a great cause.


CharityScenes: Tell us about your role as Membership Chair and what the Board Resource Committee is up to.

Mai Vukcevich: It’s been a great role for me! I’m involved in strategic planning for the board as well as recruiting. Our board members are engaged in our board and are passionate about this great cause, so it’s important that we assess how we’re making the best use of our members, how they are benefitting from their involvement, and how we can continue to recruit great candidates. One of our most important activities on the Board Resource Committee was  conducting a survey to understand what brings the board together and what we are doing well at and where we can improve.


CS: That’s a great idea. What did you learn from the survey?

MV: We learned that we could help our board members be more effective by giving them the resources to work on their “pitch”. It’s an important skill as a board member to learn how to make some difficult asks; not many people are experienced with or comfortable asking for donations. We enable board members by offering guidance and providing opportunities for practice. Our board members have learned how to be prepared and informed for difficult conversations; it’s a useful skill here and it’s a useful skill for professional environments or personal conversations.


CS: Very cool – do you think the pitches have been more effective as a result?

MV: Yes! Our board continues to grow and our events are increasingly successful. We have about 25 members on board now and I could see that increasing to 35+ in the near term. Similarly, our events continue to draw in new audiences and promote our cause.


CS: What are some of those events?

MV: We have the upcoming Gallery Night which will be hosted at the School of the Art Institute on Friday, September 9th. It’s an amazing event where supporters can connect with the mission by viewing artwork by our students (while enjoying some great cocktails and appetizers, of course). Another upcoming event is the Monster Dash on October 23rd(5k, 10k and half marathon races). It’s a wonderful community of supporters so it makes for a fun, successful event. Last year we raised over $28,000 and this year we are looking to raise $30,000 for the program.


CS: Sounds like you’re pretty busy!

MV: Very! In between those events, we’ll be continuing our ACTIVATE 2016 series in collaboration with the Chicago Loop Alliance. It’s a casual, interesting event where attendees can mingle and better understand our mission by talking to current board members. They are pretty passionate and pretty articulate (an example of that can be seen in Mai’s blog post here!).


CS: There are a lot of great events where we can learn about Snow City Arts! Which is your favorite?

MV: They are all wonderful. I’ve always loved the Gallery Night, but I recently participated in a shadow day at one of our partner hospitals and that might actually be the best “event” I’ve attended through Snow City Arts. I had the opportunity to follow one of our teaching artists as she conducted a workshop with one patient. They played the ukulele and keyboard, opening up the patient to new experiences and abilities while talking about some of the personal challenges that particular patient had faced. The session ended as our teaching artist sang Bob Marley’s “Three Little Birds” repeating “every little thing is going to be alright”. It was such a positive way to end the session; I had to hold back tears.


CS: What a beautiful experience that must have been. How can young professionals support the great work that Snow City Arts does?

MV: Join our board! It’s an extensive recruiting process, but it’s structured to ensure members know what they are signing up for. Outside of joining the board, you can attend our Gallery Night or activate event, run in the Monster Dash, make a donation, or sign up for our newsletter to stay up-to-date!

July 2016 Associate Board Spotlight: Kids in Danger

With news of the recent IKEA dresser recall making international headlines, child safety is on many people’s minds this summer. Chicago is home to one of the only parent-focused and parent-founded children’s product safety and advocacy groups in the country, Kids in Danger (KID). We were fortunate to speak with Laura Nikolovska, Program Director, to learn more about KID and how the KID Young Professionals Board supports its mission.


CharityScenes: Tell us a bit about how KID was started.


Laura Nikolovska:As you might expect with a children’s product safety group, it has a sad origin story. Our founders are a married couple and in 1998, their son Dannywas 16 months old when he was strangled to death by the travel crib at his daycare. After his death, they found out it was not a one-off accident as they had originally assumed but that four other children had been killed by the crib and that it had been recalled five yearsearlier. They founded KID when they learned that product safety is often not taken into account during the design process, even for baby and children’s products, and that there weren’t any organizations out there representing parents when it came to this issue. KID founders’ ultimate goal was to make sure any product that you purchase for children has been tested for safety and meets a strong safety standard.


CS: That’s such a sad story. Almost twenty years later, how has the organization evolved?


LN: We are still the only organization of our kind in the country: one that advocates solely for children’s product safety, that empowers parents with information that they might not otherwise access to, and that represents the consumer’s best interest when recalls occur. Most people don’t even realize that the issue we’re addressing is a problem, they want to trust that manufacturers have their families’ well-being in mind when they design and sell products. What’s unique about us is that though we remain a small nonprofit here in Chicago, we’re having a national impact on the issue—an international impact even—and that’s gratifying to see.


CS: You have quite a large social media following. How did you build that and what tips do you have for other nonprofits who want to do so?


LN: You know, we have thousands of followers on Facebook and Twitter and we believe that they are mostly interested in our network for the safety information we can provide. We started off with posts and tweets about our organization, but we really found our voice and hit our stride when we started sharing information and empowering the thousands of parents and caregivers who follow us with knowledge and information. That would be my advice for other nonprofits: become a source of information and general knowledge instead of a self-promoter and you’ll gain a lot of support and build a strong brand.


CS: Tell us a little bit about the Young Professionals Board. Are its members mostly parents?


LN: It may be surprising, but no! We are about 16 strong right now and only 2 are parents, and one is a parent-to-be. The othermembers found us through past volunteer experiences with KID, through supporters of the organization, and sometimes they just found us online. KID’s Young Professionals Board was started in January 2015 and like other associate-level boards, the intention of the group is to raise awareness and funds for KID. We focus on organizing small events in the Chicago area throughout the year. Our most recent event was at Revolution Brew Pub on March 6 and it was really a blast. Our next event will be later this summer. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more information. We encourage anyone interested in joining a small but mighty effort having a powerful impact to come out and learn more!


If you’d like to learn more about KID’s Young Professionals Board, please email You can also follow KID on Facebook here and on Twitter here.

June 2016 Associate Board Spotlight: Women Employed's Advocacy Council

For over 40 years, Women Employed (WE) has fought for equal opportunity,  fair working conditions,  improved educational opportunities, and many more initiatives focused on improving the lives of working women.  They continue to push Illinois forward through advocacy, awareness, and partnerships. For the past 10 years, young professional women have been a driving force for the organization through Women Employed’s Advocacy Council.


Amanda Collins, staff liaison of the Advocacy Council, spoke with CharityScenes to discuss initiatives, board structure, and how you can get involved! We started by discussing the four main principals of the group and how they guide the activities of the board:


  •  Women Employed and by association, the Advocacy Council, pride themselves on being at the front line of issues important to working women in Chicago. They are active in local, state, and national government, pushing for improved laws to protect women and to promote better working environments. The Council can be found at rallies, at community events, taking action through WE’s online action network, and actively engaged on WE’s social media pages.
  • Action Network:
  • Facebook:
  • Twitter: @WomenEmployed


  • In addition to personal involvement, Council members activate their networks and communities to take action on WE’s issues and strengthen WE’s supporter base. A lot of the activity here is through the organization’s social media pages and action network, but more traditional methods are used as well. Recently the Council participated in the Chicago Equal Pay Day rally and helped gather 200 signatures for a petition to support the proposed Chicago sick time ordinance, which will grant all working people in the city the ability to earn paid sick time.



  • The Council actively supportsWE’s initiatives to inform the community and gather support on the issues facing working women today. Most recently the Advocacy Council attended and volunteered at Women Employed’s signature annual fundraising event—which brings together nearly 1,000 people—The Working Lunch.


Friend Raising and Fundraising

  • The Council also schedules informal events to attract new members, thoughtfully raises money through several initiatives, and members personally contribute donations to further the cause and enable the work of Women Employed. Council members also act as volunteers at events throughout the year, offering great opportunities to learn and network!


So you want to support initiatives for working women and get involved?! The Advocacy Council is very flexible (size of the board ranges from 20-50 active members at any given time) and accommodates women ranging in age from 20-40, coming from a variety of backgrounds, and able to contribute varying amounts of time and energy. There is a level of involvement for anyone who is interested! For those truly dedicated to the cause, there is a Leadership Committee which takes a more active role in planning events, running meetings, and moving the board forward. In fact, the current chair, Ambar Mentor-Truppa, founded the Council about 10 years ago and also sits on the Women Employed’s Board of Directors. It’s a testament to the importance of the Advocacy Council as well as the long-lasting benefits council members enjoy by participating.


If you’re interested in learning more about the Advocacy Council, getting an update on the current state of affairs, or are just interested in networking with some awesome women, contact Amanda to join the Council mailing list and learn more about their upcoming summer mixer in June!

Advocacy Council members

Advocacy Council members

May 2016 Associate Board Spotlight: Chicago Lights

If you’re a fan of CharityScenes, All A-Board Alliance’s brand for young professionals interested in nonprofits in Chicago, you may have already stumbled upon Chicago Lights’ work. The organization provides a variety of one-off or longer-term volunteer opportunities—everything from tutoring to feeding the homeless to kids’ dance classes. We spoke with Tim Noce, the Vice President of Chicago Lights’ Associates Board, to learn more about what unites the members of the board and how you can get involved.


CharityScenes: Tim, tell us a little bit about how you first got involved with Chicago Lights.


Tim Noce: I actually started off as a tutor, working one-on-one with a student in the tutoring program. From there, I joined theAssociatesBoard and then was recently elected VP.


CS: Do you find that many of your members come to the Associates Board through volunteering?   


TN: There’s definitely an overlap. In fact, we schedule our meetings after tutoring so members can be involved and keep working with their students if they do both. However, we also get a lot of new members who are just looking to meet new people and make new friends in the area.


CS: Chicago Lights offers a wide variety of programming. What is the thing that unites them all?


TN: Our goal is actually pretty simple: we want to help the Chicago community, especially in the North and West Sides,grow and flourish. We want to help anyone who’s less fortunate (both kids and adults) in any way we can. The ultimate goal is for thecommunities to become self-sustaining. That’s why we focus on tutoring, for example, and the Urban Farm where volunteers and staff grow and sell produce at a produce stand to community members. The proceeds from the food goesright back into the community.


CS: You are affiliated with the Fourth Presbyterian Church. Are people of all faiths welcome to join?


TN: Absolutely! Chicago Lights was founded by the church, but we are now a completely separate non-profit. We continue to have a great partnership with the Fourth Presbyterian Church, which allows us to access their meeting spaces and helps us secure funding and volunteers, among other things. It allows us to focus more on our programs so we really value that relationship.All persuasions and faiths are welcome at Chicago Lights.


CS: What would you say has been the most rewarding part of your involvement with the organization?


TN: For me, it was definitely my involvement in the tutoring program. It was so fulfilling and rewarding to see my student graduate last year. I would also say that what sets us apart from other community organizations is the people involved. I know that seems sort of clichéd, but it’s really an intangible part of what makes Chicago Lights so special and what keeps our board members engaged. It’s wonderful to see people get active in the organization because they want to make the community a better place.


CS: That’s great! For young professionals looking to get involved in your board, where should they start?


TN: We are always looking to welcome new members and we genuinely have fun as a group. We ask for a donation to the board to join, but there is no minimum. We host lots of fun events—such as karaoke nights, trolley rides, even a really great field day event last year—that all lead up to the annual gala the first weekend in November, GLOW, our biggest event of the year. We do volunteer activities, such as street outreach and Sunday Night Supper to the homeless, as an Associates board as well. We find that our focus on service keeps people engagedand that volunteer events are some of our biggest and most popular events

If you’re interested ways to get involved and serve the community, Chicago Lights offers lots of opportunities to volunteer and try something new from a service standpoint as well as fun events throughout the year. We offer many long-termservice commitments as well as one-off opportunities to get involved with. All you have to do is want to make a difference.


Intrigued? For more on the Chicago Lights AssociatesBoard, click here.


April 2016 Associate Board Spotlight: La Casa Norte

138,575. This is the current estimate of Chicago residents experiencing homelessness. La Casa Norte and their Next Generation Board are actively working to serve this population and transform the lives and communities of those affected by homelessness.

CharityScenes had the privilege of speaking with Moni Garza, current co-chair of the Next Generation Board, to better understand how the board works and serves this important cause.

CharityScenes (CS): How did you get involved in the cause and decide to join the board?

Moni Garza (MG): I had the opportunity to meet Sol Flores, founding executivedirector of the organization, at a charity event which was actually for another cause. After speaking with her briefly, I was able to see her passion and understand what an important cause this was. I grew up in the Chicagoland area and was drawn to the unique and effective way they are treating a problem in a city I very much care about.

At the time I joined a few years ago, the Next Generation Board had just been started a few couple of years prior. I was excited to get involved early on in the life of the board and eventually to take on a leadership position. I work in corporate relations at Allstate Insurance and was eager to contribute my marketing and communication strategy skills to help grow the board and attract young professionals to the mission.

CS: What are the goals of the Next Generation Board?

MG: We work closely with the organization and governing board to make sure we are contributing to the larger organization's goals: to provide access to stable housing and deliver comprehensive services. We have fundraising events, we volunteer, and we serve as advocates for the cause. We have a number of professionals who are in public policy so we've been able to take advantage of their skills, knowledge and networks.

Our main fundraising event, Share the Love, takes place in February and is a great event to give friends, co-workers, and family members a chance to learn more about our cause from clients and the founders. We have various volunteers events throughout the year as well. Our most recent event was a professional clothing drive. Our board members organized it, advertised it and came together to sort through the clothing.

CS: How often do board members get together outside of these special events?

MG: We meet every other month and try to encourage members to attend in person, though we do offer a dial-in to accommodate schedules. One thing that is unique to our board is that we hold a one day retreat at the beginning of each year. It's a wonderful opportunity for board members to get to know each, decide what committee they want to be on, and for the group to decide what our goals will be for the year. It's also just a lot of fund to get to know each other in a setting (a co-founder's house) where we can relax and snack and hang out together.

CS: That does sound fun and unique! How would someone go about joining the board?

MG: We're always open to bringing new members on board. We have each new member meet with Jessica, our staff liaison, and Valerie, my co-chair and founder of the Next Generation Board. We want to make sure our newest members understand the scope of the organization and are truly invested in the cause. I'll talk to the potential member as well and then we'll find a spot for them on one of our four committees: advocacy, events, development and fundraising, and marketing. Each member has a give/get requirement of $300 each year which we've found is pretty easily achieved through ticket sales at our events or a personal donation. Members have opportunities to volunteer throughout the year, thought there isn't a strict "volunteer requirement".

CS: Thanks so much for chatting with us. How can potential members learn more?

MG: Reach out! Email or check out our facebook page here, our webpage here, our twitter feed or our instagram account!


March 2016 Associate Board Spotlight: The Field Associates

The Field Museum is a must-see for Chicagoans and visitors alike. The Field Associates auxiliary group gives young professionals age 21-40 behind-the-scenes access to the science action, education, collections, and world-class exhibitions that make The Field Museum one of the world’s top natural history institutions. We spoke with Michael Wren, Giving Society Manager and staff liaison, and Casey McCarthy, Communications Committee Co-Chair, to learn more about how this group operates and how it’s related to the larger organization.


Please give us an overview of The Field Associates and your leadership structure.

The Field Associates is the Museum’s young professionals group, focusing on fundraising and friend-raising. We hold a big fundraising event each year called Evolve (not to be confused with the Museum’s Women’s Board Gala); this year it will be held on Saturday, October 22, and will feature one of the Museum’s most non-traditional exhibits, which at this point is still under wraps. The Field Associates is for young philanthropists ages 21-40 who are passionate about The Field Museum mission to explore the Earth and its people. We have a monthly activity for our members, typically involving a lecture by one of the Museum’s many active scientists. As part of our February “Love in the Animal Kingdom” series, we featured an event and presentation called “Shark Sex: Fifty Shades of Great White,” followed by cocktails and networking. We also hold events like social happy hours, volunteer activities (we’re going to the Beaubien Woods in April), and professional development opportunities. For example, we have an event coming up where our members can network and get a professional headshot taken. If we want our members to be ambassadors for the Museum, they need to know the ins and outs of the Museum’s cutting-edge work.


Tell us a bit about how The Field Associates is structured.

The Field Associates has two tiers of membership: the General Field Associates for young donors who want to attend a few events over the year, and the Field Associates Board for young professionals looking to engage in philanthropy and leadership opportunities at The Field Museum. The Field Museum Board is led by an executive board, made up of a president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, and the two committee co-chairs from each of the four committees. The committees are run by rotating co-chairs, with one incumbent and one new co-chair serving every year. The committees represent different ways of getting involved, from communications (including our monthly newsletter) to programming (such as planning our fun events) to the Evolve committee (which plans and hosts our primary fundraising event) to membership (in charge of recruiting, welcoming, and connecting our members).


Casey, what’s been the most surprising benefit for you personally of serving on the board?

It’s been such an interesting and unique way to get involved in The Field Museum, which is one of our great Chicago institutions! I love the access we get to what goes on behind the scenes, the real science action that makes the Museum so important. At our events we get to interact one-on-one with the scientists, and there’s so much more going on beyond what you think there is at The Field Museum. The scientists are doing work with a global impact that we can all learn from, they’re not just maintaining and studying the existing collections.


Speaking of the Museum itself, how do you work with the larger organization to attract members to your board?

Casey: The Field Museum has been great about supporting us as a board. They really recognize that we are the next generation of philanthropic support. We promote our events through general museum communication channels, and our scientists look forward to volunteering to speak at our events. At larger museum events such as exhibit openings, we get a table to promote the board. About half of our members have joined through personal referrals, the other half have found us via organic traffic through the website.


Mike: The Museum is has embarked on an extraordinary $250 million campaign between 2015 and 2020, but really we’re thinking 30 years ahead as well. We know that our Field Associates are so important to the long-term future of the Museum. To ensure this continuity, the sitting president of the Field Associates is brought in as an ex-officio Board of Trustees Member of the Museum, and Field Associates executive board members are invited to sit in on meetings of the President’s Leadership Council, which is one of the Museum’s top-level advisory groups.


If this information has piqued your interest in the Field Associates, you can reach out to Mike at for more on how you can get involved.

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February 2016 Associate Board Spotlight: Chicago Foundation for Education

“A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.” – Henry Adams

The Chicago Foundation for Education (“CFE”) recognizes the importance of the teacher’s ability to affect change in Chicago Public Schools. For over 30 years, CFE has been providing grants and professional development opportunities to qualifying teachers, and for the past 4 years, the Associate Committee has helped to fund and raise awareness for some of those opportunities. In addition to being tasked with fundraising and publicity for the cause, the Associate Committee members are asked to volunteer, bring aboard new members, and help plan events for the organization.

Sarah Vogt has been on the board for the past 3 years and previously served as the fundraising chair. Sarah spent some time with us at CharityScenes to tell us about her experience. She previously worked at PWC and recently her interest in education has led her to pursue a Master’s degree in public policy. Sarah is one of about 20 young professionals on the board who come from diverse backgrounds, although many of the current members happen to work in finance. She let us know that board is actively looking to recruit about 10 new members over the course of the year…so we’ve tried to make your decision making a little easier and highlighted 3 big reasons you should consider joining the CFE Associate Committee!



o   Connected to the cause – board members have the opportunity to evaluate grants, audit grants (i.e. check that funds are used in accordance with the stated purpose), and even visit classrooms to see their grants being put to good use! Sarah loved seeing one of the grants at work in a classroom performance she attended where all the kids dressed up as animals as part of a science class.

o   Immediate impact – Board members pay $30 in annual dues and the combined funds are used as a small grant to an individual teacher


o   Make friends – the board is fun! They hosts 2 unique fundraisers each year and a lot of the meetings will also have a social component after

o   Spice up your social calendar – what better reason is there to get people together than raising money for a good cause? Board members spend time and energy to pull off successful- and I mean successful! $40,000 raised! – events such as their annual whirleyball tournament in November or a bags/cornhole tournament in the spring or summer. Grab your friends and get them involved too!


o   Take on a leadership position – The executive board of the associate committee is comprised of a chairman, a fundraising chair, a volunteer chair and a social & membership chair. There are often opportunities to take on one of these roles or other leadership positions related to the fundraisers.

o   Networking – while some members are teachers or work in education, most board members do not and are drawn to the cause by their interest in education and making a difference in Chicago. Bonus: associate committee members have the opportunity to network with and reach out to senior leaders who serve on the board of directors, including prestigious lawyers, private equity principals, leaders in education and more!

Want to learn more and see the board in action? Check out their webpage here:




CharityScenes Social: Getting to know boards 19 - 22...

For those of you looking forward to the CharityScenes Social on January 21st (tickets still available here), we're giving you a bit of a preview into each of the boards that will be participating. Check out the four boards below and scroll through other posts to read up on the others!


Deborah’s Place

The Deborah's Place Young Professional Board engages young professionals in leadership, volunteerism, fundraising, and awareness for Deborah’s Place. Board members develop leadership, communication, volunteer and fundraising skills – all while working with Deborah’s Place to open doors for women experiencing homelessness.

Chicago Foundation For Education

The Associate Committee is actively engaged in supporting the Chicago Foundation for Education's programs and fundraising. Founded in 2011 by a group of young professionals interested in making a sustainable impact in education, the committee is dedicated to supporting Chicago public school teachers and students. Members volunteer throughout the year by visiting classrooms and reading application proposals as well as organizing two fundraisers. Committee members also lend their professional skills by supporting marketing, research and data analysis projects.

Metropolitan Board of the Chicago Urban League

The Metropolitan Board of the Chicago Urban League (MetroBoard), founded in 1983, is a premiere auxiliary of young professionals committed to promoting and supporting the ideas and goals of the Urban League movement throughout the Chicago community. Over the last 32 years, MetroBoard has been committed to the betterment of the community they serve by actively giving back through service, financial support, and leadership and has continuously developed top tier leaders. The first chapter of the National Urban LeagueYoung Professionals, MetroBoard set the standard and continues to be an example for other chapters to follow. To learn more or get involved please visit

Health Connect One

HealthConnect One is the national leader in advancing respectful, community-based, peer-to-peer support for pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding, and early parenting. The HC One Associate Board supports the organization’s overall vision: to see every baby, mother, and family thrive in a healthy community. Members participate in broader organizational activities and host various events, donating their time, skill, and experiences in seeking to make HC One a healthy and viable organization. Members make a personal commitment to maternal and child health promotion through their participation and commitment to fundraising efforts.


January 2016 Associate Board Spotlight: Big Brothers Big Sisters

Many associate boards have a gala event as their marquee fundraiser each year. These events can be a huge time commitment for board members and volunteers, but also a wonderful way to expose new audiences to your cause and, at the end of the day, a lot of fun!

We reached out to Teresa Sullivan of Big Brothers Big Sisters Chicago for some tips and tricks on organizing big events. Their annual Big Bash gets bigger and better each year; read on to find out how they do it.

-Why did you choose to get involved with BBBS?

I was a Big Sister when I worked in Madison so when I moved to Chicago for law school I was looking for a way to get involved here. I believe strongly in the mission of Big Brothers Big Sisters; each child and mentor relationship has a lasting, positive impact on the lives of both Littles and Bigs. 

-How is the event committee for the Big Bash structured? How do you work with the leaders of the Leadership Board?

We have four committees: Sponsorship, Silent Auction, Experience and Marketing. Each committee has two co-chairs who do the heavy lifting for their committee with the help of the board at large. Sponsorship works to get sponsors both by reaching out to former and potential sponsors and/or working with each Leadership Board member to reach out to his/her company and the companies in their network for sponsorships. Silent Auction works to gather auction items by reaching out to past auction donors and coming up with priority items (high value sports items, trips, unusual items) and strategizing on how to get those. Experience helps decide on entertainment, event set up, catering and other items like whether to have a photo booth or other fun elements as part of the evening. Marketing helps us get the word out on social and traditional media platforms. Each Leadership Board member is required to buy a ticket or make an equivalent donation. We also expect them to participate by getting sponsorships and auction items and selling tickets to their networks. 

-How have you had success approaching sponsors and donors for the auction?

A personal connection is typically the key. Cold calling rarely works. When we can leverage a Leadership Board member or a Board member to make an introduction to the company (even if that person doesn't want to make the ask him or herself) we are much more successful in securing the donation. Success in sponsorships starts with recruiting and retaining great talent on the Leadership Board. 

-Any challenges that come to mind as you organize a big fundraiser like this? How have you overcome them?

I would say that our biggest challenge has been deciding how to keep a connection to our core mission as an organization as the ticket sales increase each year. We want to share the stories of our Big/Little matches as a part of the event but its hard at a cocktail-style event during which we don't have a formal program. Fortunately, I know our Leadership Board members do a great job of spreading our mission throughout the evening. We also have posters up with information highlighting a few of our thousands of matches each year. But we're still working on that one! 

-What's one big takeaway you've learned from organizing the Big Bash?

Start earlier than you think you need to! This goes for booking a space, booking a band, asking for sponsorships, asking for silent auction items, selling tickets, etc. We try to start early in the year asking the Leadership Board to get engaged with each of those. Ideally, we would book the space and band at least a year before the event, start asking for sponsorships and silent auction items 10 months before the event and selling tickets at least a few months before the event. 



Thank You for a Great Year

It has been a wonderful year for CharityScenes, our parent organization (All A-Board Alliance),  the associate boards we've engaged with, and the young professionals who have made meaningful impacts in the non-profit world.


In 2015, All A-Board became a 501c3 organization.  We hosted learning events to help associate boards become more effective, and we hosted promotional events to get the word out about associate boards. We've updated our websites and posted to blogs to keep you up-to-date on the happenings in the non-profit world. We've grown our newsletter distribution lists and our social media followings to get the word out about the great work that is funded through these charity events.


What's in store for 2016? Stayed tuned! We look forward to another great year with you!

CharityScenes Social - Boards 16 - 18...


The St. Jude Young Professionals Board of Chicago supports the lifesaving work of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. The board provides networking opportunities including the 4th Annual St. Jude Day at the Derby Party (May 7th) and their signature gala, the 15th Annual St. Jude Harvest Moon, which takes place September 23rd, which is also childhood cancer awareness month. No family ever pays St. Jude for anything, because we believe that all a family should worry about is helping their child live.


Through fundraising events and volunteerism, Family Focus’ Associate Board supports the mission of Family Focus; nurturing children and strengthening families. We strive to make the Board experience one in which young professionals can expand their professional networks, experience the way in which our services are transformative, and give back to the Chicago community in a way which is personally meaningful.


The Ounce Affiliates Board works to advance the Ounce of Prevention Fund's mission by engaging citizens in support of early childhood education. Members introduce the Ounce to new champions and support the children served in our programs through fundraising and volunteer opportunities. Members include a growing number of young professionals, business people, educators, parents and entrepreneurs who are committed to supporting early learning programs that help all children reach their potential to succeed in school and in life.


CharityScenes Social - Get to know boards 12 - 15

We're less than a month away from the CharityScenes Social and we have a lot more boards to introduce you to! Check out the awesome groups below and get your ticket now to meet them on January 21st!


The Young Professionals Board (YPB), supports the overall mission and activities of The Safe Haven Network. Acting as ambassadors, YPB members engage the community through volunteering, fundraising, networking, and advocacy opportunities targeted towards young professionals.


As a Field Associate, you’ll join a vibrant community of young professionals committed to the mission of the Field Museum: to inspire curiosity about life on Earth.  As part of the next generation of Chicago’s civic leaders, your energy, talents and leadership will make a difference.

Join us as we explore, learn and celebrate global cultures, the natural world, and 4.5 billion years of history!


The Center for Economic Progress (CEP) helps low-income, working families as a trusted provider of tax and financial services. Everything we do, from direct service to informing public policy, improves the financial stability of those we serve. The Associate Board supports and enhances the mission of the CEP, primarily through outreach and fundraising efforts.


Oral Health America’s mission is to change lives by connecting communities with resources to drive access to care, increase health literacy and advocate for policies that improve overall health through better oral health for all Americans, especially those most vulnerable. Inaugural Associate Board members serve as an ambassador for OHA, operating as a conduit for discussion between peers and larger prospective donors, ensuring execution of our mission and raising funds to support rising dental professionals and programming that supports vulnerable populations. Members will play a large role in setting pace for future civic engagement opportunities as well as establishing the structure and strengthening its bylaws to increase the visibility of OHA, thus raising awareness around issues surrounding oral health and supporting OHA’s mission. 

CharityScenes Social: Boards 8 - 11...

Does the holiday spirit have you feeling charitable? Or maybe it's the approaching new year that has you thinking about how to get more involved in the community next year? Or maybe you just want to pack your schedule before it gets too cold and everyone goes into hibernation? Whatever it is, CharityScenes Social will be a great opportunity for you to grab some friends on January 21st and learn about some awesome young professional boards in Chicago. Check out a few of the boards below and stay tuned for features on the rest!


Associate Board of the YMCA of Metro Chicago

The Associate Board of the YMCA of Metro Chicago is an informed and inclusive group of emerging business, professional and civic leaders that advocates for the Y. Members of the Associate Board are responsible for building awareness and a deeper understanding of the YMCA of Metro Chicago and our mission with key audiences.

Saint Anthony Hospital Associates Board

Saint Anthony Hospital is a community teaching hospital, dedicated to serving the health needs of Chicago's West and Southwest sides. The hospital promotes health and provides quality care to patients and families of all faiths in our community. The primary goal is to improve the lives of low-income families and children in some of Chicago’s most vulnerable neighborhoods.  The Saint Anthony Hospital Foundation works to foster the spirit of philanthropy and provide capital resources to support the mission of the hospital. The Associates Board, composed of a group of professionals and future community leaders between the ages of 25-45, work with the Foundation to serve the mission of Saint Anthony Hospital by serving in a volunteer capacity to help to raise funds for the hospital, raise awareness of the hospital in the Chicago area, as well as engage other potential associate board members or supporters.

Women's Global Education Project

WGEP believes that universal education, gender equality, and the empowerment of girls and women are critical to a society’s development.  Our mission is to empower young people in rural areas of sub-Saharan Africa (Senegal and Kenya) through education.  Our programs are: 
Sisters to School, which provides scholarships and community interventions for the most deserving girls, and
- Our Sisters Read (with USAID), including literacy programs that include libraries and mobile labs.  
Meet others with a passion for the developing world and interest in supporting the U.N.’s #1 development priority, while you build your leadership, networking, and fundraising skills.

Kids in Danger Young Professionals Board

Kids in Danger is a non-profit organization dedicated to protecting children by improving children's product safety. The Young Professional Board's purpose is to engage and encourage young professionals to share resources, time, and talent as ambassadors and fundraisers for KID. 

CharityScenes Social - Boards 4 - 7

Read below for a preview of some of the great boards which will be featured at the CharityScenes Social at SPACE by doejo on January 21, 2016! 

Young Women's Giving Council of Chicago Foundation for Women

Young Women’s Giving Council of Chicago Foundation for Women is a diverse community of young professionals who are committed to supporting young women and girls through philanthropic efforts. To support our philanthropy we utilize our strength as a network of young women to fundraise for the purpose of grantmaking. In addition, we develop the potential of women as leaders and philanthropists, empowering them through educational programming, leadership opportunities, and professional development. 

Auxiliary Board of Northwestern Memorial Hospital

The Auxiliary Board of Northwestern Memorial Hospital (ABNMH) is a non-profit organization of Chicago’s young professionals who are dedicated to raising funds for Northwestern Memorial Hospital. Since becoming affiliated with the hospital in 1987, ABNMH has fund raised to enhance treatment for Northwestern Memorial’s patients and their families through a host of patient care initiatives, including: ambulatory spine programs, bone marrow transplant, comprehensive heart failure prevention and treatment and most recently, type 1 diabetes (T1D). The board has focused on providing "seed money" to programs and research initiatives that are so novel and innovative, they may otherwise not get funded. 

Lookingglass Theatre Junior Board

The Lookingglass Theatre Junior Board is a tightly-knit group of Chicago’s finest up-and-coming professionals that promotes the educational programs of Lookingglass Theatre Company. We're at the front lines in advocating for the significant role the arts play in Chicago’s vibrant civic life. Since our 2001 founding by David Schwimmer and Billy Dec, we have grown to become one of the most influential junior boards in town because we embrace and embody the diversity, energy and enthusiasm that made Lookingglass the Tony Award®- winning nationally recognized theatre it is today. 

Aspire Associate Board

Founded in 2011, the Associate Board is a dynamic group of professionals between the ages of 22 and 30 who support Aspire through fundraising events, volunteerism and awareness campaigns. Monthly meetings are held at different locations in Chicago for brainstorming, planning and organizing. Board members represent a wide range of backgrounds and professional expertise, and interested candidates are welcome.

CharityScenes Social - Getting to know boards 1-3...

CharityScenes Social is coming up on January 21st! Get to know the boards participating - we'll feature a few boards each week leading up to the event so that you'll be ready to mingle!


Urban Gateways educates and inspires young people by delivering high-quality, accessible arts experiences that advance their personal and academic growth. Urban Gateways delivers high-quality arts programs led by trained and experienced professional artists in music, dance, theater, literary arts, visual arts, and digital media to engage youth in grades pre-K through 12, their teachers, families, and communities. Urban Gateways teaching artists collaborate with school teachers, administrators, and art specialists to develop and deliver engaging, integrated curricula for all types of learners.

Urban Gateways' Auxiliary Board, the New Arts Forum’s, mission is to promote and support Urban Gateways’ efforts to provide arts education programs to all children, despite race or economic class, while also promoting Urban Gatewaysartists and local artists/institutions. New Arts Forum members have the unique opportunity to advocate the work of Urban Gateways Artists to a fresh, diverse, and young constituency, enhance existing fundraising efforts and cultivate future organizational leadership. The New Arts Forum welcomes people of all backgrounds and income brackets.


EverThrive Illinois works to improve the health of women, children, and families over the lifespan through community engagement, partnerships, policy analysis, education, and advocacy. Our Associate Board is a dynamic group of young leaders and professionals dedicated to assisting EverThrive Illinois with our advocacy and program activities. Associate Board members have the opportunity to gain valuable skills and learn about cutting-edge public health topics, while volunteering with a statewide nonprofit organization, and making new friends!


I Am We is a young nonprofit arts organization that is dedicated to empowering underserved communities in Chicago to create unity. Founded in 2011 by artists, educators, and professionals, I Am We was born to address community needs by identifying ways from a grassroots level how to strengthen these neighborhoods. We learned that in underserved communities in Chicago there is a disconnect between constituents, community stakeholders and YOUTH. To break the chains of disconnect and create a sense of community, we realize that meaningful connections have to develop among these groups, especially adults and youth. 

For this reason, I Am We developed an Associate Board. We believe there are more artists, professionals, educators, and civic leaders throughout Chicago who also want to create change. We trust that these individuals are passionate about the cause of I Am We and are ready to use their skills, talents, education, and passion for the greater good in underserved communities.  Our goal as an Associate Board is to support I Am We in building effective programming and community engagement models for underserved communities.


Summaries above were provided by the boards themselves