Celebrate 20 Years of Chicagoland Heroes with the American Red Cross and Increase your Impact

For the past 20 years, the American Red Cross of Greater Chicago has held their annual Heroes Breakfast to honor individuals and groups for acts of immense bravery, dedication and service to the community. This year they are proud to recognize 12 extraordinary individuals that prove heroes walk among us delivering kindness and making a difference every day.

This year, they will celebrate these incredible individuals including: 

  • A pair of family physicians who founded a food pantry in their community and now serve more than 22,000 clients annually with culturally appropriate foods, clothes, medical equipment, hygiene items, books and more.
  • A nurse who sprang into action when she encountered a blazing car fire and helped safe the life of the crash victim.
  • A Fire Chief who responded to an unprecedented and toxic battery fire and led efforts to protect his community from heath, safety, and environmental threats.
  • A high schooler who created a volunteer group that helped thousands of senior citizens book COVID-19 vaccine appointments.

How you can take action: 

Support the American Red Cross and Honor Community Heroes

The support of generous donors like you 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!

Now through May 11, your gift made in honor of the 2022 Class of Heroes will be matched twice for every dollar donated up to $100,000 thanks to the Edwardson Family Foundation and Susan and Nick Noyes, and Karen Gray-Krehbiel and John H. Krehbiel, Jr.

Meet the 2022 Heroes

Michael A. McGee, M.D., M.P.H
Blood Services Hero

Evelyn Figueroa, M.D. & Alex Wu, M.D.
Chicago Impact Heroes

Ruthann Richardson, R.N.
Disaster Relief Hero

Fire Chief Tracey Steffes
Firefighter Hero

Lynn Cole
Global Citizenship Hero

Stephanie Esterland, B.S.N., R.N., O.C.N.
Healthcare Hero

Officer Jennifer Maddox
Law Enforcement Hero

Lewis Medina
Lifesaving Rescue Hero

Captain Scott Friedland
Military Hero

Quilen Blackwell
Social Justice Hero

Benjamin Kagan
Youth Hero

Dorothy L. Gaters
Education Hero

Your American Red Cross

As the world emerges with new perspectives following a years-long global pandemic, the American Red Cross continues to deliver our critical mission throughout and beyond the effects of COVID-19. Local, national and international disasters have touched the lives of millions of people around the world and our communities here at home. From major, multi-family fires in Chicagoland to large-scale hurricanes spanning hundreds of coastal miles or devastating wildfires that burn through neighborhoods, there’s been no hesitation for our volunteers to zip up their red vests and get to work. Adorned with the universally recognized Red Cross symbol of hope, volunteers logged thousands of hours standing up shelters, delivering warm meals and spreading comfort to those whose lives have come to a screeching halt as they face the journey after a disaster. 

The Red Cross responds to around 60,000 disasters each year providing that same comfort, immediate relief and hope to those in need- a number steadily rising with increasing frequency and intensity due to climate change. Beyond humanitarian work, the Red Cross faced the worst national blood shortage in over a decade. The Biomedical team collaborated to strengthen the workforce and distribute the important message about the need for blood and strived to support our hospitals locally and across the country. 

As part of the world’s largest humanitarian network, the Red Cross supports military members and their families and provides international humanitarian aid responding to disasters and needs created by global conflict. Red Cross volunteers work to provide comfort items, basic necessities, medical care and help to reunited separated families

Red Cross Training Courses provide certification in lifesaving skills and can help people face an emergency in their regular life and help keep healthcare workers up to date in their training including heath care providers, first responders and lifeguards. 


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