On May 11, the American Red Cross of Greater Chicago continued its time-honored tradition of recognizing some of Chicago’s outstanding community advocates who have gone above and beyond in their efforts to build and maintain better communities, and who have made a lasting impact on others in the process.
At the 20th annual Red Cross Heroes Breakfast, Humanity, Heroism, and Hope held at the Hilton Chicago, nearly 1,000 individuals gathered in recognition of more than a dozen individuals who have shown exemplary action and leadership in 12 service categories, including healthcare, disaster relief, education, firefighting and law enforcement and more. Honorees were chosen by an independent committee of leaders in the business and civic community.
“In 2022, it is a great privilege to celebrate these outstanding individuals who selflessly give of themselves with no expectation of gain, yet who have made a tremendous impact in their communities and beyond,” said Celena Roldán, CEO of the American Red Cross of Illinois. “It is inspiring, seeing the good they have done and continue to do.”
In addition, Dr. Helene Gayle, president and CEO of The Chicago Community Trust, was presented with the prestigious Heritage Award, which honors an individual who demonstrates a long-term commitment to improvement of the lives of others through actions, deeds, and philanthropic works in the corporate and civic communities. Under Dr. Gayle’s leadership, The Chicago Community Trust helped raise more than $35 million for the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund. These efforts provided resources to help communities impacted the most by the pandemic.
The event was attended by Red Cross of Greater Chicago leadership and members of the Board of Directors and honorary chair Dan Ryan, Central Region President for JLL. It was co-chaired by Susan B. Noyes, founder and chief visionary officer of Make It Better Media Group and Patrick Gallagher, CEO of Gallagher Global Brokerage Americas, and emceed by CBS News Chicago anchors Brad Edwards and Irika Sargent. Read our 2016 interview with Sargent.
$1.7 million was raised at this year’s Heroes Breakfast, enabling the American Red Cross of Greater Chicago to continue to shelter, feed and provide comfort after disasters; help supply about 40% of the nation’s blood; teach skills that save lives; provide international humanitarian aid; and support military members, veterans and their families.
Sponsors of the 2022 event included Better, the Edwardson Family Foundation, Susan and Nick Noyes, JLL, KPMG LLP, Packaging Corporation of America and CBS 2 Chicago.
Missed the event? You can watch the 2022 Heroes Breakfast on MIBTV.
How to Help:
Support the American Red Cross and Honor Community Heroes
The support of generous donors powers the urgent humanitarian needs of the American Red Cross. Make a gift in honor of these Heroes and help provide immediate relief where it is needed most!
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Donna Berry Glass is a freelance writer in Marin County who writes mostly about family and kid-oriented topics. When she’s not writing, she enjoys spending time with her family exploring the natural beauty of Marin, snuggling with her Cavalier King Charles spaniel while reading a good book or whipping up something delicious in her space-challenged kitchen. Donna is a supporter of the California Academy of Sciences, a world class science museum and research institution, and the Institute on Aging which provides much needed services to seniors and disabled individuals.