Message from the President:
We welcome your interest in the Wisconsin Chapter of the Foundation Fighting Blindness. We are excited about this newly formed chapter and look forward to your involvement. Any new ideas on connecting all those that have been touched personally or by a loved one with a retinal disease will be appreciated. A fresh approach to our chapter meetings, including format, location, time and day of week, are being discussed.
Congratulations Wisconsin VisionWalkers!
We finally got the beautiful weather back that we were blessed with in our first five years, and that helped to encourage 660 walkers to join us on Sunday, May 22, 2016!
A big THANK YOU to the entire Milwaukee community and all of Wisconsin (and beyond) for making our VisionWalk such a great success, including all of you who donated to your friends and family who are affected by vision loss. Your generous contributions will be utilized by the top scientists and researchers in the world to find a cure for blinding retinal diseases.
Our teams and families raised an AMAZING $92,000, a GOAL BUSTER and record for the Wisconsin VisionWalk.
THANKS TO OUR WALK COMMITTEE!
A very special thank you to our Walk Chairs, Amy Lehman and Kelly Savasta; Family Chair Nicole Everson; Research Chair, Dr. David Gamm from the University of Wisconsin - Madison Hospitals and Clinics (thanks Michael Chaim for filling in!); Medical Chair Dr. Kim Stepien, Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Eye Institute; Chapter President Bunny Jordan; Youth Chairs Bennett Lehman, Jada Clark and Violet Clark; Honorary Business Chair Christopher Heyer Racine Danish Kringles; Community Outreach Chair Nathan Carrasquillo; and Lions Club Outreach Chairs, Theresa Smith from the Wind Lake Lions Club and Ron Buschke from the Hartford-Kettle Moraine Lions Club.
Rounding out our fabulous team were the other members of our Walk Committee .. Jennifer Emert, Matt Templeton, and Peter Borchardt. Your leadership and dedication to the VisionWalk was the driving force behind our success.
THANKS TO OUR SPONSORS!
We would also like to thank our sponsors: Community Captain - United Association. Community Leaders - Wisconsin Talking Book and Braille Library; Rivco; Commerce State Bank; Froedtert Eye Institute and The Medical College of Wisconsin; and Music on the Move Plus. Community Partners - Park Bank Foundation; Peggie and Arol Sherwin; and Retina & Vitreous Consultants of Wisconsin. Community Supporters - Vision Forward Association, Eric Barbieri; Orthopaedic Associates; DeForest Leos Club; Wind Lake Lions; REPETE Corporation; Dr. Kim Stepien; Beyond Vision; Mega Rentals Inc.; Fredonia Lions Club; and Racine Danish Kringle.
THANKS TO OUR IN-KIND DONORS!
Also, a special thank you to the many community sponsors and in-kind donors who made Sunday such a great day for so many. Racine Danish Kringle and Chris Heyer donated a HUGE quantity of delicious Kringles for breakfast and lunch. Vitner's Snacks in Chicago donated the potato chips, and the Muskego Walmart Vision Center donated cookies and water. Frank Sadowski from Reinhart Food Service donated 250 of our hot dogs. Thanks to Coca-Cola for supplying the bottled water.
Tina Hamm from Zumba was awesome leading the warm-ups. And thanks to Michael Paradise from Image It Photography ,llc for his time and expertise as our official photographer.
For entertainment, we had special appearances from the following: Bango from the Milwaukee Bucks, along with the Milwaukee Bucks Dancers; Terry Walker, ventriloquist and entertainer; Brian Manley, clown from the Greater Greenfield Lions Club; Kiersten Gonzalez, former Miss Milwaukee who did a nice rendition of the National Anthem; Miss Wisconsin USA 2016, Kate Redeker & Miss Wisconsin Teen USA 2016, Karly Knaus; Roscoe The Milwaukee Admirals Mascot; and Pounce from the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee.
Special thanks to two participants: As he has done the past six years, Taj Jordan and Music on the Move Plus donated many things for the event, and their staff could not have been more professional and supportive. Musician and Milwaukee favorite, Eric Barbieri of the Barbeez, donated his time to perform for us, as he has done for many years.
We would like to give special recognition to the students at Brookfield Central High School for supplying the majority of our volunteers this year. Also, the entire Emert Family (thank you Matt!) for serving as volunteers extraordinaire. And finally, a HUGE thank you to all the Team Captains, walkers, and volunteers! Your support, dedication, and energy made the day a true success.
THANKS TO OUR TOP FUNDRAISERS!
We appreciate EVERY DONATION and any level of fundraising our teams do, because it is a TEAM effort. But we also want to highlight the top Wisconsin VisionWalk teams and their captains for going above and beyond. These totals are still being added to as we enter checks. Congratulations on an amazing performance!
$16,285 ... Team Rumor (Peter, Dave and Laure Borchardt)
$13,795 ... The M&Ms (Nora and Jeff Karbash)
$5,731 .. Hootie Whoo (Nikki Thompson and Bunny Jordan)
$5,385 ... The Eye Institute (Karri Stock)
$3,885 ... Chrissie's Crusaders (Cindy Alioto)
$3,135 .. VisionEars (Nicole Everson and Sharon Pfeifer)
$2,895 ... Eye of the Tiger (Mary Jo Hutjens)
$2,775 ... Vinny's Voyage (Carrie Colano)
$2,500 .. Wisconsin Talking Book & Braille Library (Becky Manz)
$2,454 ... Team Faith (Eileen Alvarado)
$2,070 ... Team Bennett (Amy Lehman)
$1,970 ... Jetta's Jesters (Jetta Lenz)
$1,740 ... Team Cabaj (John Cabaj)
$1,505 ... Team Savasta (Kelly Savasta)
$1,460 ... Be Thou My Vision (Nancy Wolck)
$1,350 .. Lions Pride 27-A1 (Theresa Smith)
$1,130 ... You Caught My Eye (Jennifer Verville)
$1,050 ... Team Raclaw (Jennifer Raclaw)
$1,000 ... Retina & Vitreous Consultants of WI (Jim Mortell)
Many individual fundraisers achieved our VisionWalk All Stars Club status by raising more than $1,000 on their own to help their teams achieve such lofty numbers. We want to recognize their EXTRAORDINARY efforts:
Mary Jo Hutjens
We also recognized the Largest Walk Team: THE EYE INSTITUTE, which had 84, took back their crown from defending champion CHRISSIE'S CRUSADERS, which had 63. HOOTIE WHOO had 38.
ONE FINAL THANK YOU for everyone who contributed to this GREAT event!
If you have any questions or want to offer any feedback on the event, contact Steve Sroka at (847) 680-0100 or SSroka@FightBlindness.org.SEE YOU NEXT YEAR!
I’ll never forget the day at Milwaukee Eye Institute when I was told Vincent has an incurable retinal disease. Vince was nine years old and in 3rd grade. It started years prior with glasses which didn’t help. It then went on to three years of different doctors, eye exams, vision therapy and many tests. In January of 2005, it was determined that Vincent had a genetic vision disease called Stargardts.
Associate Director of Events, Midwest
977 Lakeview Parkway, Suite 140
Vernon Hills, IL 60061
Phone: 847-680-0100 Ext. 11