During the week of November 9th GTL asked people to take up the call to donate much needed supplies and equipment for our classes, and they delivered! A very big thanks to the following individuals for their donations:
Mrs. Bobbi Dougherty – 2 Dirt Devil Power Duo vacuum cleaners, eating utensils
Mr. and Mrs. Lesch - vacuum cleaner, electric knife, sports equipment
Mr. and Mrs. Mindo - kitchen essentials
Mrs. Karen Dailey - kitchen essentials
Mr. and Mrs. Walkuska - food processor
Mr. and Mrs. Pachut – All-metal stand mixer, towels
Mr. and Mrs. Katz - checkers and chess games Ms. Sandy Eden – 7 large boxes of arts and crafts supplies Mrs. Lenora Sombright - kitchen essentials
Mr. and Mrs. Vasic – coffee pot, pots and pans, dishes
Mr. and Mrs. Pytel - measuring spoons, bowls, towels
Mrs. Elaine Gruber – All-Metal stand mixer Ms. Bobbie Dunbar - $25 donation
Individuals who participate in the 2-year training program in Dorothy’s Can-Do Café are given specific training and “on-the-job” practice. They move from bakery work to café scenarios focusing on Customer Service, Store Cleanliness, and Opening and Closing Responsibilities.
Dorothy’s Can-Do Café is staffed by Gateway’s participants. Individuals who are in the program are given specific training and “on-the-job” practice. They move from bakery work to café scenarios focusing on customer service, store cleanliness, and filling customer orders. In the bakery, participants are trained to use measuring and cutting utensils, in addition to operating the appliances. They learn to make bread, rolls, cookies, cake, and items for seasonal holidays.
But Dorothy's Can-Do Café is much more than just a training program. Dorothy’s is open to the public creating a forum for bringing the world in and cultivating interaction that leads to fuller lives for our participants and our community. All products sold are baked, packaged and sold by the participants of Gateway with proceeds benefitting the organization.
Robert Bob Smolen, Board President, has been a supporter of GTL for over 26 years and on the Board of Directors for more than 13 years. He was elected Board President in 2015. From the time he first met Dorothy Hough, he believed in the mission of providing a safe and challenging community for the participants at GTL. As the Board President, he is working to expand the Board and establishing a vibrant development team to ensure GTL's future. After more than 40 years in the transportation industry, Bob is now retired and focuses his energies on GTL.
Ted McDougal, Board Vice President, joined the GTL board in 2014 and chairs its Public Relations committee. He learned early in life about treatment of individuals with special needs through a cousin with Down syndrome, and from his wife and his sister, who were special education teachers. When GTL was looking for directors with public relations experience, Ted jumped at the chance to donate his talent to help GTL convert from a state-funded organization to one that is supported by independent donors. He has more than 30 years of communications and marketing experience in businesses and nonprofits, all in Chicago.
Victor Bernstein, Board Secretary, joined the Board of Directors in 2007. Being a Board Director is his way of giving back to GTL what it gave to his son, a participant in GTL’s Adult Training Program for 15 years. His mission is to ensure that GTL gets to continue providing excellent services and programs for adults with behavioral and developmental disabilities in the face of Illinois’ financial difficulties. Victor has established GTL’s presence at the Lincoln Square Farmers Market to publicize its program and products in the community. He participates in all GTL events and personally solicits family, friends and associates to participate as well. He is a semi-retired child psychologist and taught at the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration.
Jim Jablonski, Board Director, is a member of the Operations Committee to ensure that the GTL building is properly maintained and all equipment is functioning. He works behind the scenes negotiating labor donations for the building’s upkeep and for building materials. Knowing the inner workings of the city, Jim has established himself as GTL’s liaison to the City of Chicago. His mission is to return to GTL the kindness and support it has provided his son who has been a participant in the GTL Adult Training program for 30 years. Jim is a retired Chicago Police officer.
Kimberly M. Oglesby, Board Director, is the Fund Development Committee Chair and sits on the Fall Fest gala committee. Her personal mission as a board member is to bridge gaps, ease pains and solve problems for those most in need. Kimberly is a Business Development and Career Transition coach working with companies such as Challenger, Gray and Christmas, Job Works and Tek Systems and her past career in medical sales with Johnson and Johnson and GE Health Care .
Paula Moscinski, Board Director, joined GTL in 2014 to promote and increase its volunteer activity. She worked with volunteer GTL staff and parents to plan and hold events for promoting parent involvement and enlisting outside volunteers. She also reinstated the GTL Gazette Newsletter. As a board member, she is committed to enlightening the donor community on the essential need for GTL’s work. Paula is the owner of Innerconnections, LLC, a coaching and consulting firm for career transition.
Katie Dunne, Board Director, joined the Board of Directors at the beginning of 2016 and has a sister who attends GTL’s Adult Training program. GTL has been a life-changing community for Katie's sister and family. Her goal as a board member is to keep GTL's doors open by achieving financial independence from the state. As a member of the Fundraising and Public Relations Committees, Katie planned a young professionals fundraiser in Lincoln Park and assists with maintenance of the GTL website. Katie is a graduate of Georgetown University Law School and works at a law firm in Chicago.
Erin Clark, Board Director, has historically been a Friend of GTL, believing strongly in its mission, purpose and people. One of her goals as a board member is to grow GTL’s exposure to a larger audience instantly. The GTL Board is also benefitting from her professional work as a Customer Support manager for a growing Chicago tech firm where she’s involved in company strategy and planning.
It is with great sadness that we share with you that long-time Gateway instructor and Executive Director, Cheryl Hennelly, passed away on Monday, December 18, 2017. She dedicated her life's work to the children and adults with intellectual disabilities and their families that graced the hallways of Gateway. She treated each participant as if they were they were her own child instilling them with love, confidence, and responsibility. She was respected and trusted by every family that sent their loved one to Gateway.
Cheryl is irreplaceable but we will honor her legacy of passion and dedication by continuing to provide the highest level of training and services possible. Our thoughts and prayers are with her husband, two children, her family and all those that she touched.
Cheryl L. "Cheri" Hennelly (nee Oberg) - beloved wife of Gerry; loving mother of Samantha and Patrick; fond daughter of Patricia (nee Benanti) (Tony) Hack and the late Roy (Barbara) Oberg; dear sister of Linda (Kevin) Hand and the late William, Mark and Christine Oberg; loving aunt and friend of many. Memorial visitation at Cooney Funeral Home 625 Busse Hwy Park Ridge on Friday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Service at 5 p.m. Interment private. In lieu of flowers donations to Gateway to Learning ( 4925 N. Lincoln Ave. Chicago) would be appreciated. Info 847-685-1002 www.cooneyfuneralhome.com
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