Annual Report for 2019

Friends of the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County

Impact Report to Friends of the Forest Preserve District Donors


Our Community Partnerships

When you support the Friends of the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County 501(c)(3), you make an impact in your DuPage community.

Our stories about our community partnerships — strengthened by your donations — demonstrate how we all can make the forest preserves diverse for the enjoyment of DuPage residents. 

Grant Helps Revitalize a Remnant Savanna at West Chicago Prairie

West-Chicago-Prairie-Savanna-Restoration-Grant-Illinois-The Friends of the Forest Preserve District received a Community Stewardship Challenge Grant from the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation in the amount of $21,000 to restore 6 acres of habitat at West Chicago Prairie Forest Preserve in West Chicago. For every dollar the Friends raised, the ICECF matched the funds 3:1, up to $21,000. The Friends raised $7,000 for the project, obtaining the maximum contribution of $21,000 from ICECF. The foundation contributed an additional $4,000 thanks to the West Chicago Prairie Stewardship Group's volunteers, who logged more than 400 hours before October 2019. The active support of the WCPSG, a nonprofit volunteer organization dedicated to the high-quality site, qualified the restoration for the grant. In total, $32,000 was raised for the revitalization. 

Chamberlain Group Contributes to Special Education in DuPage Forest Preserves

Chamberlain-Group-Donation-Supports-Special-EducationChamberlain Group, Inc. made a $10,000 donation to the Friends to provide additional outdoor recreational experiences and learning opportunities throughout the preserves for those with special needs. CGI also joined the Forest Preserve District to host a Special Needs Adventure Day in October at St. James Farm Forest Preserve in Warrenville. More than 100 individuals learned about native animals to DuPage forest preserves and tried out archery, camping, fishing and kayaking. CGI’s commitment to good corporate citizenship is rooted in efforts to enhance the well-being of children and those with special needs. 

L.L.Bean Provides Outdoor Gear for Outsiders

LLBean-Gear-DonationL.L.Bean of Oak Brook gifted $5,000 in outdoor gear to the Friends and Forest Preserve District for use in DuPage forest preserves. The Forest Preserve District offered a variety of archery, camping, fishing and kayaking opportunities using this gear at its special events and recreational program in 2019.  L.L.Bean additionally sponsored the Forest Preserve District’s “Discovery Challenge” photo contest, offering a grand prize camping package with a $250 gift card, a camping experience with tent, sleeping bag and backpack at Blackwell Family Campground, and a kayaking experience with a kayak, paddle, life jacket for a guided kayaking tour. 

Domtar Stocks Fish at Mallard Lake 

Domtar-Employees-Stock-Mallard-LakeDomtar Corporation provided $3,000 in funds to the Friends to support the stocking of 2,250 yellow perch at Mallard Lake at Mallard Lake Forest Preserve in Bloomingdale. The Forest Preserve District stocks select lakes with various species of fish as part of its fisheries-management program each year. Yellow perch are native to DuPage forest preserve lakes and a favorite fish among anglers. Domtar also supported the Forest Preserve District’s Blanding’s turtle species-recovery program and recreational amenities in the forest preserves.

Grant Boosts Birding Habitat at Springbrook Prairie

Sandhill-Crane-Springbrook-Prairie-©DanThompsonThanks to a $2,500 grant from the DuPage Birding Club to the Friends, the Forest Preserve District installed 1,848 plants in the 113-acre wetland southwest of Book Road and 75th Street at Springbrook Prairie Forest Preserve in Naperville. Forest Preserve District volunteer site steward Joe Suchecki and volunteers from the DuPage Birding Club put a significant amount of the plugs in place, but before they began, Forest Preserve District contractors removed dense fields of invasive narrow and hybrid cattails to make room. As the new plantings repopulate, they should help keep invasive species in check naturally. The hope is that a sustainable, more biologically diverse community of wetland flowers, rushes and sedges will attract a greater variety of marsh wildlife.

Our Signature Program

Blanding's Turtles Get a Head Start Thanks to Hatchling Adoptions

The Forest Preserve District has led regional efforts to help the state-endangered Blanding’s turtle population for nearly 25 years. Through its head-start program, Blanding’s turtle hatchlings are raised in captivity before they are released to the wild; this gives the young turtles a better chance to survive in the wild.

The Friends’ adoption program is now in its third year. For $100 or more, a donor is provided an opportunity to adopt a Blanding’s turtle hatchling and sponsor its care. Donors receive bi-annual updates about their hatchlings’ growth progress and eventual release at a DuPage forest preserve.

The Friends hosted two exclusive programs about the Blanding’s turtle head-start program for our donors this summer. Ecologist Dan Thompson discussed his field-monitoring efforts and presented an overview about the data he collects for the program. He then provided a behind-the-scenes tour where the eggs are kept and the hatchlings housed and fed at the Urban Stream Research Center.

This year, the Blanding’s turtle adoption program attracted 21 donors. Many donors adopted more than one turtle, and some donors gave more than the minimal adoption requirement to support the program.

Our Financials

When you donate to the Friends of the Forest Preserve District, you invest in your DuPage forest preserves.

Your donations make a difference in the restoration of habitats, conservation of wildlife and making the forest preserves' amenities and programs the best they can be.

Your investments are a vote of confidence in the Friends to serve as good stewards who support the Forest Preserve District's preserves, wildlife, services and amenities.

See What You've Accomplished

The Friends of the Forest Preserve District raised $357,675 in cash and $13,219 in in-kind donations to support DuPage forest preserves, habitat restoration, wildlife conservation, nature-based programs and amenities, and cultural and other projects in 2019. 

Expenditures supporting projects, preserves and operations as designated by donors totaled $226,965, and the foundation closed the year with a balance of $661,356.

You helped us get there!

View the Friends' Financial Annual Report for 2019 (PDF).

Year-Over-Year Growth

Progress 2018 2019 Growth
Total Gifts 858 930 8.3 percent
Matching Gifts $5,469 $5,845 6.8 percent
Recurring Gifts $3,500 $5,037.50 43.9 percent
Ambassadors Circle Donors 314 366 16.6 percent


Our Annual Highlights

Great Accomplishments, Projects and More

Thanks in part to the generous gifts from our individual donors and community partners, the Friends of the Forest Preserve District supported: 

  • The treatment of more than 9,000 injured, orphaned and sick native animals admitted to Willowbrook Wildlife Center
  • Hatching 238 state-endangered Blanding’s turtles in captivity
  • The restoration of treads on the grand staircase at Mayslake Hall and installation of a new, period-appropriate runner
  • Funding DuPage science and social-studies teachers’ travel for the “Teacher-Institute Day: Magic School Bus Tour” at Fullersburg Woods Nature Education Center, Kline Creek Farm and Willowbrook Wildlife Center
  • The purchase of a drone to assist Forest Preserve District police in search-and-rescue efforts in DuPage forest preserves

The Friends accepted a $5,000 grant from the Mary J. Demmon Private Foundation for the routine and emergency veterinary care for the horses at Danada Equestrian Center.

We hosted "A Night for Nature" on September 26 and secured $7,200 in ticket sales. We raised another $10,076 from the silent and live auctions combined.

The Friends raised a total of $20,430 on #GivingTuesday on December 3, more than a 50 percent increase over 2018.

We secured more than $73,000 in gifts with our year-end appeal, a 62 percent increase over 2018.

Our Donors

Ambassadors Circle Donors

Our sincere thanks are extended to our 366 Ambassadors Circle donors! We are grateful to all contributors for gifts of all sizes that make a difference for our forest preserves. If we have missed your name as part of the Ambassadors Circle, please let us know.

$3,500 and Above

Estate of Ronald L. Bork
Chamberlain Group
Adam Cyze
Mary J. Demmon Private Foundation
Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation
Louis and Cosette Kosiba
L.L. Bean
Larry Larson
Linda and Phillip Painter
Cathy Perkowitz
Timberlake Civic Association
Marion White
Janice and Jack Yong

$1,500 to $3,499

Jack Barzilai and Alison Fleming
Seth Becker and Helen Nam
Pamela Conrad
Domtar Inc
DuPage Birding Club
Michael Firman and Marilyn Schweitzer
David Ginther
Daniel and Barbara Hanrahan
William and Ellen Johns
Kriacuciunas Family
Kenneth McAfee

$500 to $1,499

Patricia Banaszak and BP Foundation
Christopher and Mary Baumbach
Fred and Kathleen Bauters
Brian Beggerow
Ms. Leah Bricker
Shannon Burns
Tom and Ruth Cloonan
P.R. Davis
Dennis Dean
Stephen and Ina Delurgio
Davie and Arlene Demotte
Vincent and Christine Donatello
John and Diane Fiore
Willliam and Jess Friewald
Phil Gelber
Howard Goldstein and Peggy McGrath
Daniel Grobe Sachs and Motorola Solutions Foundation
Michele Hansen
Scott Hardek
Paul Herbert and Robert R. McCormick Foundation
Nancy Hermann
David and Connie Hill
Craig J. Holderness
George and Janet Kusch
Wayland and Marlene Lewen
Lombard Junior Women's Club
Mary Ann Mahoney
Norman Mareci
Richard James McCann Foundation
Rodney McCulloch
Carol McGee
Ann McGill
Mr Gary and Mrs. Judy Montgomery
Mark Moon and Jill Armbruster
Fred Moszur and Stephanie Milen
Kathleen Murphy
Nelson Testing Services, Inc
New York Life
Elaine Novak-Jans
Ms. Carol O'Neal
John and Gloria Page
Richard Laurence Parish Foundation
Donald and Susan Panozzo
Pepper Construction
Richard and Carol Peters
Charles and Noreen Prokuski
Rotary Club of Elmhurst
Bruce “Zink” and Martha Sanders
Henry and Eileen Schmidt
Terrence and Donna Simale
Joseph and Francine Skala
Michael Suppa
John Tableriou
Diane Telander
Annette Thompson and Bank of America Charitable Foundation
David and Norma Thompson
Danielle Tomczak
Laura Torphy
Theodore Utchen
Ray and Louise Vogt
Ray and Laura Volk
Peggy Vos and The Boeing Company
Randall and Beth Wagner
WBK Engineering
Tim Whelan
Judith Zerial
Daniel and Cheryl Zinnen

$250 to $499

Diane Addante
Susan Armitage
James and Leslie Bayles
Susan Black
Megan Dutta
Louis and Kathleen Fischer
Flock Free Bird Control
Marc and Kathleen Hausmann
Allan Hins
John Hudak
Quinton Jensen
John and Heidi Labuszewski
Wayne Laudenbach
Janet Lawrence
Kimberly Lewen
Francine Manilow
Susan Musil
Jefferson Reiter and Robert R. McCormick Foundation
Dan Rubly
Sierra Club River Prairie Group
Scott Simkus
Mr. and Mrs. Charles Shepard
Donald and Chris Shore
Edward Warden
Hans Weckerle
Richard and Liz Whitney
Richard and Denise Wold
Douglas Zimmer

$100 to $249

Alliance of Fine Art
Nancy Allured
Mr. Thomas and Mrs. Elizabeth Anderson
Jay and Sheryl Appleberry
John and Janet Barr II
Daniel Basore
Bonnie Baum
Gerald and Patricia Beeson
Cary and Terry Belseth
Deborah Bernat
Maryann Betz
Tim Blackwelder
Sara Bogdanove
Audra Bonnet
Melinda Born
Kelvin and Verla Boyle
Rodney and Margaret Brandon
James and Leona Breede
Ms. Martha Bright
John Bronec
James Brown
Holly Brownlie
Mr. Craig and Mrs. Sharon Buma
Alan and Margaret Busic
Anthony and Joyce Carey
Dawn Cmiel James Carroll
John Casiello
Peter Castritsis
Karl Castro
Carolyn Cates
Penny Chanez
Suzy Cho
Tina Coates
Michael and Rita Cody
Mary Coleman
College of DuPage Environmental Club
Jeff Cooke
Mr. Phil Culcasi
John and Ann Curcio
William Dawe
E. Richard Dease
Carol DeGreve and Union Tank Car Company
Mr. John and Mrs. Helen Demsher
Nathan and Shay Depies
David and Claudia D'Hooge
Jeffrey and Leigh Dionne
Mark Donnelley and Veta Bonnewell
Brenda Dorsey
Regina Dreyer
Gerald and Carolyn Droszcz
Bruce Dudzik
Dennis Duszak
Denis and Patricia Dywan
Mr. Randall Edwards
Kristen Ehf
Charles and Donna Everett
Debbie Falcone
Marcella Fanning
Birgit Farchmin
Sharon Edel Finzer
First United Methodist Church of Elmhurst
Dave Fisher
James and Nancy Foody
Franklin Middle School
William Franzen
Joseph and Sylvia Frattaroli
Mr. Glenn Gabanski
Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Garcia
Mr. William and Mrs. Cynthia Gates
Allen and Patricia Gebala
Mr. Hugh Glenn
Courtney Gosewisch
Joanne Goszczycki
Vincent and Mary Anne Greco
Judith Grey
Barbara Gwodz
Charles and Elizabeth Hadala
Linda Hartigan
Denise Hauser
Sean Hayden and Jacqueline Harrison
Keith and Tracy Hernandez
Patricia Higgins
Anthony and Loretta Hruska
Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Hurd
Linda Ignace
John and Victoria Igras
Mike and Anna Jacobs
James and Judith Jambor
Jim and Deb Jones
Mr. Eric and Mrs. Jeanne Kamrath
Patrick Kang
Heidi Keitz
Mr. Kevin and Mrs. Gina Kelly
Donald and Jean Kennerly
Agnieszka Kos
Kelly and Holly Kost
Alfred and Ludmilla Kovalsky
Keith Kowalewski
Ms. Eileen Kowles
Peggy Krihak
Walter and Charlotte Krueger
Mr. Paul and Mrs. Eileen LeFort
Joseph and Judith Lenhardt
Alexis Lerch
Keith Letsche
Kimberly Lewen
Joan Lewis
Elaine Libovicz
Jean Livingston
George Logan
Deborah Mackay
Patricia Maid
Roxanne Malcom
Mike Maney
Dr. Michael Shannon Marvin and Ardythe Tiesenga
Ronald Mattson
Guy and Sharon Matthew
Marjorie McClow
Kenneth McClurg and Caterpillar Foundation
Rebecca McDade
James and Elizabeth McDonald
W. Laura McDowell
Errol and Helen McIntyre
Jeffrey Michel and KPMG
Donald and Eva Miller
Edward and Maureen Miller
Masanori and Mizuho Mishina
Mr. Gregory and Mrs. Sharon Moody
Belinda Morgan
Judith Morgan
Marsha Murphy
Ron and Teri Murphy
William Murray
Karen Nargis
Linda Neff
Janice Neitzel
Network for Good
Andrew and Linda Nilles
Norton Creek Elementary School Earth Savers Club
Maryann Orr
David and Karen Osborn
George and Jo Marie Ostrowski
Susan Page
Carole Panagakos
Mr. Pat Pappas
Ben Peterson
Kathryn Peterson
Michael and Jan Pettersen
Richard and Constance Pinto
James and Kim Piotrowski
Laura Plemich
Richard and Donna Pordes
Portillo's Hot Dogs LLC
Edward and Dorothea Przybycien
Jeffrey and Jodi Redick
Diane Reed
Steven and Patricia Reef
Royden and Cynthia Rice
Jon and Karyn Romano
Brian Rupp and Patricia Rose
Rotary Club of Villa Park
Chester and Patricia Rozanski
Ms. Bonnie Salih
Ms. Joyce Salih
Sandra Sansone Brennan
William and Barb Scanlan
Louis and Kristina Scapellato
Stephanie Scurtu
Judith Scheets
Laurel Schmitt
Susan Schneider
John Schofield
Amy Schuett
Carl Schultz/Horticultural Consultants
Geraldine Sczygiel
Gloria Seger
Robert and Hannelore Shanahan
Geoffrey Shandler and News Corp Giving
Mr. Bruce and Mrs. Kari Shatzer
David Shaw and Janice Becker
Ronald and Judy Skleney
David and Faith Slowinski
Carla Soria and Soria Family
Thomas Staray
William Steciak
Milan Stolic
Conrad and Janet Stoll
Francis Strehl
Susan Summerbell
James Susic, Jr.
Mr. Alan Swierkosz and Ms. Karen Russell
Joan Swires
S. Tarr
Alan and Julia Thomas
Diane Thornton
Inger Tiberi
Alzada Tipton
John Tokar and Sandra Risvold
Lara Trapp
Norman and Sandra Trapp
Robert Tyler
Rena Urso
Linda Waggoner
Patrick Wallin and Whitney Parker
John and Jennifer Walsh
Norman and Donna Wandke
Noah Warriner
Marci Watts
Mary Lou Wehrli and Herb Nadelhoffer
Wheaton/Warrenvile South High School
Kylie White
Sandra Whitmer
Ellen Wier
Ted Wolff
Thomas and Shaheen Wolff
Marina Yesilevich
Abigail Zeeb
John and Jill Zmaczynski

Our Board and Development Staff

Board of Directors

Karyn Charvat, Naperville
Executive Director, PowerForward DuPage

Vice Chair
Diane Addante, Naperville
Retired, LeeWard’s/Michael’s

Brian Battle, Wheaton
Director, Analytics Group, Performance Trust Capital Partners LLC

Secretary (January March)
Jennifer Martyn
Principal, Puchalski and Martyn
Deputy Public Administrator for DuPage County

Board Members

Penny Chanez
Executive Assistant, DuPage County Health Department

Scott M. Hardek, Elmhurst
Partner, Kavanagh, Grumley & Gorbold LLC

Larry C. Larson, Naperville
Retired, College of DuPage

Carl Schultz, Aurora
Owner, Horticultural Consultants

Ray Vogt, Naperville
Retired, Lincoln Electric Holdings, Inc.

Ex-Officio Member
Tim Whelan, Glen Ellyn
Commissioner, Forest Preserve District of DuPage County
Timothy Whelan Law Associates Ltd.


Tony Martinez Jr.
Director, Community Relations

Audra Bonnet
Public Relations Coordinator, Community Relations

Johanna Biedron
Executive Assistant, Community Relations

Jack Hogan
Director, Administration & Finance

Denise Hebble Jones
Consultant, Administration & Finance

A gift to the Friends of the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County is tax-deductible under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.


Contact the Forest Preserve District's development office at 630-871-6400 or



The Friends of the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County advances the vision of the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County through philanthropic endeavors.

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