November 2020
President's Message
Going into the holidays, we are reflecting on our amazing community of supporters and how thankful we are for each and every one of you! Check out the November President's Message by Cindy Morris below and please know how much you are appreciated.
We're excited to announce that Mr. David Booth, a Manual High School Alum and the Vice President of Basketball Operations for the National Basketball Association (NBA), will be this year's speaker!
Classroom Grant Program
We are excited to announce that we were able to fund 29 classroom grant projects and 4 STEM grant projects this school year. Thank you so much to the Murray and Rena Yeoman Fund and the Peoria NEXT Foster Fund of the Community Foundation of Central Illinois for your generosity in helping to fund these grants!

Also, CONGRATULATIONS to all the recipients! This school year has been challenging, but these staff members have risen to the occasion with amazing ideas to provide engagement and learning opportunities for their students.
Check out the pictures of the recipients below and be sure to tell them congrats if you see them around!
Pictured from Left-Right, Top to Bottom: Leigh Ann Cloud, Hedy Elliott-Gardner, Mary LaKemper, Michelle Buscher, Cami Williams, Heidi DeFrance, Mary Keltner, Monica Hayes, Oriana Gilson with Jennifer Armstrong and Michael Brix, Joe Baumgardner, Jennifer Rozboril and Trina Rodriguez, Stephanie Churchill, Shelley Craycraft, Kathy Phillips, Cathy McKenzie, Sara Wenger, Maureen Langholf, Sara Ratliff, Julie Craghead, Audurone Simmons, Cheryl Halm, Julie Jenkins and Michelle Smith, Jitske Miedeme-Fox, Mary Menninga, Kevin Roecker, Robert Wilson, and Dawn Gersich
A new series to get to know those in the
community who work with the PPS Foundation!
Jen Adler has been the Administrative Director of the PPS Foundation since 2017.
Read on to get to know her a little better.
1. What are some of your hobbies?
I love distance running! This past year I averaged 30-35 miles per week. I also like reading, trivia, and teaching myself to play the piano.

2. What is the number-one item on your bucket list?
I would absolutely love to run in the Boston Marathon someday. I’m continuing to train so that once large races can safely resume again, I can try to get a Boston-Qualifying time for my age group.

3. Best advice you’ve heard?
I love the quote by Maya Angelou, “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” 

4. Favorite aspect of Central Illinois?
I love that it’s situated between St. Louis and Chicago. It’s easy to make a trip to a bigger city and still enjoy the benefits of living in a smaller area.
5. What is something others like to do but you do not?
Cooking. I am so glad there are people who enjoy doing it though, because I love to eat!
Check Out Buzz Chats:
a PPS Foundation Video Series!
Every other week we will be connecting with different members of our community to talk about our public schools and how they interact with current events in Peoria.

On November 12th, we caught up with the Executive Director at the Peoria Park District, Emily Cahill. Be sure to check out the video below.

We will be back with additional Buzz Chats on December 3rd and 10th at 6:30 PM on our Facebook page. Check out that page for more information on who the guests for those broadcasts will be.
Buzz Chats with Emily Cahill from the Peoria Park District
Another Way to Support the PPS Foundation
As we are rolling into the holidays, little gifts can be a big hit. For a $25 donation, you can gift a set of note cards to family and friends to show them how much they are appreciated. Each set contains six note cards (plus envelopes) with exclusive artwork created by a PPS student. We currently have five different sets of note cards available.
SHERO of the Month: DrSusan Grzanich
Congratulations to Dr. Susan Grzanich for being chosen as our November PPS Foundation SHERO!

We are so thankful for all of Dr. Grzanich's support in helping us fulfill our mission. Everything she does is with our students first and foremost in her mind. As Innovation and Grants Officer and Director, Woodruff Career and Technical Center for the district, she has coordinated the efforts of innovative education programs, as well as spearheading the efforts to bring millions in grant money to PPS. As a friend of the Foundation, she is generous with time, talents, and treasure, always willing to support a Foundation event, volunteer for our programing, and share her talents as a trusted mentor, offering professional advice on our activities. We value all your insight and support. 

Thank you, Susan, for all you do for the PPS Foundation and the students in Peoria Public Schools. You truly are a SHERO!
Hy-Vee on Sheridan:
an Amazing Partner and Supporter!
One of the big challenges our community is facing during this time is making sure families in need have enough food to eat. The PPS Foundation would like to send a HUGE thank you to Hy-Vee on Sheridan for working with us to provide food and grocery deliveries to PPS families most at risk. We are truly in awe at the amount of support they have provided. Thank you for being so wonderful to work with, Hy-Vee!
PPS Foundation's Board of Directors:
Andre Allen, Ruth Bittner, Solivian Dismuke, Maarten de Haas,
Scott McCord, Daniel Musisi, Cheryl Sanfilip, and Cathy Wiggers

PPS Foundation's Staff:
Cindy Morris (President), Jen Adler (Administrative Director),
Sarah Oakford (Adopt-A-School Coordinator), Trish O'Shaughnessy (Director, Community Engagement & Horizons Program), Allison Coulter (Horizons), and Ella Dancey (Horizons)