Local Boys and Girls Clubs receives national award
Leaders of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Dundee Township have received national recognition for their involvement in the organization's success.
The Carpentersville nonprofit was the only club in the state to earn a gold honor of the League of EAGLES award, presented by the Boys and Girls Clubs of America during a regional conference last month, said Ronnie Jenkins, national director of board transformation.
The award, Jenkins said, is given to clubs with a high involvement from its board of directors in six areas: Engaging during meetings and events; asking for financial support; giving personal contributions; leading a strategic plan; evaluating the club's performance, as well as their own; and serving on a committee or task force.
"At the end of the day, there are two driving forces to a high performing Boys and Girls Club. One is the professional leadership inside the club, and the second is the board of directors," Jenkins said. "When you have both of those, you're going to have a tremendous impact and life-changing effect on (club members)."
Each club's board performance is measured through an annual recording program, which was created as part of a national initiative to promote development and sustainability, Jenkins said. The Boys and Girls Clubs of Dundee Township was one of only a few dozen branches nationwide to receive the award's highest level this year, he said, meaning its board achieved 95 to 100 percent involvement.
About 210, or one-third, of all clubs in the country received at least an honorable mention by scoring 75 percent or higher, Jenkins said. Clubs in Champaign and Bloomington -- the only others recognized in Illinois -- each received the bronze honor.
The Dundee Township chapter has 30 board members, each of whom is an active community leader, public servant, or businessman or businesswoman, said CEO Mike Contreras. They oversee eight after-school club sites and more than 1,500 youth and teen members.
Contreras, who was hired earlier this year, said the board members also shared leadership advice and were pivotal in helping with his transition, while ensuring the rest of the organization operated smoothly.
"It's great to see all our board members put their heart and soul into our community and our organization," he said. "This award shows that we have wonderful people that care about the children we serve."