South Elgin woman named Altrusa Woman of the Year

  • Sandy Ziros of South Elgin has been named recipient of the 68th annual Woman of the Year by Altrusa International of Elgin, Illinois Inc.

    Sandy Ziros of South Elgin has been named recipient of the 68th annual Woman of the Year by Altrusa International of Elgin, Illinois Inc. Courtesy of Dan Szpekowski

Submitted by Pat Szpekowski
Updated 4/5/2017 10:31 PM

Sandy Ziros of South Elgin has been named recipient of the 68th annual Woman of the Year by Altrusa International of Elgin, Illinois Inc. A dinner will be held at 6 p.m. Thursday, May 18, at Villa Olivia Country Club in Bartlett.

Dinner tickets are available at $35 each. Deadline for reservations is Saturday, May 13. For information and reservations, contact Joanna Wester at or call (847) 528-3157.


The local Altrusa Woman of the Year Award began in 1950 when Harriet Armstrong was recognized as the first recipient. Since then, a long line of dedicated local women have been honored for their volunteer service to the greater Elgin area community.

"We are honoring Sandy for her continued efforts in helping others in the community," said Dr. Clare Ollayos, Altrusa Woman of the Year committee chair. "Her journey to helping others in need began when her grandson Cory was 6 years old and in need of a kidney transplant. She organized an event to help raise funds to make it happen."

After many years of good health, Cory was in need of a new kidney transplant and Ziros held another fundraiser for him a few months ago.

Since that initial and personal fundraiser, Ziros has organized a number of local fundraisers by helping families acquire silent auction and raffle items for the dinners she organizes held at the Elgin Moose Lodge. Thousands of dollars have been raised to benefit those in need.

Some of the events Ziros has organized are: Miracles for Maria, Maria Serban; All In for Princess Lillian, Lillian Thiel; Kidney for Cory, Cory Graff; Everything for Ethan, Ethan Smith; Benefit for Pete, Pete Giannaris; Benefit for Jackson, Jackson Marquez, Love for Julie, Julie Martin; and Helping Hands for Deb, the late Debbie Hernandez.

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Service is also important to Ziros, who volunteers with Women in Need, Wings of Roselle, the Wing Street Food Pantry in Elgin; and the Northern Illinois Food Bank. For three years, she has been part of the activity called Feed our Starving Children; and she cooks at the Elgin Moose Lodge on Tuesday and Friday evenings.

For her efforts, Ziros received the President's Volunteer Service Award, presented by the President's Council on Service and Civic Participation, in recognition and appreciation of her commitment to strengthening the nation and making a difference through community service.

She and her husband, Al, have been married for 37 years and reside in South Elgin. They have a daughter, Aimee, and son, Roger. Aimee and her husband Tony have three children, Abby, Niky and Cory. Tony has two sons, Nathan and Dylan. Roger and his wife Sheri have three children, Emily, Brynn and Paige. The Ziros' also have a great granddaughter, Malia, the daughter of Abby.

Ziros was born in St. Charles and raised in Elgin and South Elgin. She attended Clinton Grade School, Kimball Middle School and is a graduate of Elgin High School. She is vice president of statement marketing with Citibank in Elk Grove Village, where she has been employed for 17 years. Previously when her children were growing, she was a waitress/server at Paul's Restaurant in Elgin for 17 years.

For more information and reservations regarding the Altrusa Woman of the Year dinner, contact Joanna Wester at (847) 528-3157.

Altrusa International of Elgin, Illinois, Inc. is an international service organization comprised of executive and professional women. In its history, it continues to sponsor a variety of projects in the community through volunteerism and monetary support. Members reside throughout the Northern Fox Valley area, including Elgin, South Elgin, Bartlett, Dundee, Sleepy Hollow, Carpentersville, Algonquin, Bartlett, Hampshire, Huntley and Pingree Grove.


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