Clearbrook’s Shining Star Ball raises over $1.2 million

Over 360 people came together at the Four Seasons Chicago on May 17, to honor Clearbrook, an Arlington Heights-based nonprofit that serves people with intellectual/developmental disabilities via personalized programs and services.

As the organization’s largest annual fundraiser, in support of the mission — to empower those with disabilities to live their fullest lives possible — this year, Clearbrook’s Shining Star Ball raised over $1.2 million.

“This year’s event was nothing short of spectacular. The evening buzzed with energy, highlighted by a live auction featuring not one, but two autographed Taylor Swift guitars. Guests also enjoyed a thrilling paddle raise and dancing, filled with new and longtime supporters. The atmosphere was electric as attendees gathered to celebrate Clearbrook and contribute to its mission — it was truly an unforgettable event,” said Jessica Smart, Clearbrook’s president and CEO.

Shining Star Ball committee members, from left, are: Mary Campobasso, Carly Van Hoven Riley, Caira Barbanente, Molly Witges, Emily Turkot, Linda Riley and Kristina Duber. Courtesy of Clearbrook

Proceeds from the Shining Star Ball will help underwrite Clearbrook's Community Day Services Initiative, enhancing its CDS Program by transitioning individuals from one large day program into three smaller, more personalized day programs. This initiative will provide participants with the tailored attention and support they need, ensuring a more impactful and individualized experience with more opportunities to be integrated into their communities. Thanks to the generosity of the people who attended the black-tie gala, Clearbrook will be able to purchase three new day program sites providing tailored support for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Steve Heslop, TD SYNNEX Corporation, Senior Vice President, PCW was honored for his unwavering dedication to our mission. Over the past two years, the Share the Magic Foundation — founded and chaired by Heslop — has contributed nearly $100,000 to Clearbrook.

From left, Clearbrook board Chair Arly Guenther and Clearbrook CEO Jessica Smart with Clearbrook honoree Steve Heslop at the Shining Star Ball. Heslop was honored for his unwavering dedication to Clearbrook’s mission. Courtesy of Clearbrook

Clearbrook is home, a family, to over 8,000 children and adults impacted by intellectual and developmental disabilities. Clearbrook supports them, and their families, by providing support across the life span, helping them to live the fullest lives possible. Clearbrook provides personalized children, community day, employment, residential, and clinical services at more than 80 locations in 160 communities throughout the Chicago area, and is the largest provider of home-based services in the state. Clearbrook is proud of its deep expertise that spans six decades — allowing it to care for an array of unique needs. Clearbrook is more than just a nonprofit, is a family, friends, a job, a way to give back, home. Employing more than 900 people, Clearbrook reports that 89% of every dollar raised goes directly into programs and services.

Jerry Castellini dances the night away at Clearbrook's Shining Star Ball. Courtesy of Clearbrook

For information, please visit

Article Comments
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the "flag" link in the lower-right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.