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Volunteer of the Month: February

Reported by greg_gibson@ipsd.org on 2/18/16

The Steck Elementary School Fun Run began as a small fundraiser with just 150 runners, raising about $1,000. In 2015, thanks in part to the efforts of PTA co-president and race chair Kathy Lengiewicz, the race grew to over 600 runners and raised more than $14,000. Because of her dedication and commitment, Kathy is being recognized as the District 204 BMO Harris Bank Volunteer of the Month.

"There are so many parents who do so much," she said. "I'm just one of many, and in my case, I share my current role with my co-president, Kerry Clemm. We are in year three as co-presidents and I couldn't imagine doing this alone."

Kathy has been volunteering for seven years at Steck in her daughters' classes. As a full-time attorney, her work sometimes requires travel, so she started out small, beginning as box top chair for two years, then moved to a role on the Steck PTA board as fundraising vice president. When she became co-president, the PTA began working on growing the Steck Fun Run, which is a USATF Certified 5K and includes a 1-mile family run and walk.

"The best reward is how happy my kids are to see me in their classes," she said. "The second best thing is the reward of the Fun Run. By 11 a.m., the race is done, the prizes have been raffled and the food is all gone. That moment of having completed what took months to put together is amazing. Knowing we raised money while putting on a great community event makes all the hard work worth it."

Today, her daughter Caroline is in sixth grade at Fischer Middle School and her daughter Isabelle is in third grade at Steck.

"There are so many opportunities for people to help in so many ways, great and small. I'm a huge believer in public education. I consider myself incredibly lucky that my children go to such amazing schools," she said.

BMO Harris Bank is helping District 204 recognize one volunteer each month who has generously given his or her time to support District 204's students and schools. To celebrate these outstanding volunteers, BMO Harris Bank is donating $1,000 to the volunteer's school. To nominate an outstanding volunteer, visit http://www.ipsd.org/Subpage.aspx/Volunteer.


Steck Elementary volunteer Kathy Lengiewicz, District 204 BMO Harris Bank Volunteer of the Month recipient, pictured with iPads purchased from Steck Fun Run.


Photo (l to r) Steck Elementary School Principal Elizabeth Pohlmann, Nicki McIntyre, Branch Manager, BMO Harris Bank – 95th St., Kathy Lengiewicz, District 204 BMO Harris Bank Volunteer of the Month recipient, and Eric Blanco, Branch Manager, BMO Harris Bank – Aurora.

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