February 2021
President's Message
Check out the February President's Message by Cindy Morris below.
Looking ahead to warmer weather, we are excited to announce the date of our largest event. More information on registration will be sent out soon!
Horizons Club: Speakers Needed!
We are looking for individuals to help us create a video library of career speakers for our Horizons middle school career exploration program. 

These videos are short informal conversations, ideally about 6-10 minutes long. You'll talk about your job responsibilities, needed education, and some day in the life examples. They are easy to film on a phone, and we can take care of the rest. 

If you would like to help, please e-mail Trish at We have a sample video if you would like to see one and some pointers. 

We are also looking for virtual speakers to speak with our students via MS Teams or Zoom. If this is more your thing, you can find times we are in need by checking out the button below.
Adopt-a-School Program - Help Needed!
For more information on our Adopt-a-School program e-mail
Congratulations to Mike Illuzzi for being chosen as our February PPS Foundation HERO of the Month!

With Valentine's Day, February is the perfect month to give this special award to a man that has a huge heart. He is one of the finest principals our school district has ever had. He is widely respected among educators, students, community members, and all who have ever interacted with. 

Mike continues to serve as a mentor to administrators, educators, personal friends and most importantly students. He has over the years mentored hundreds of students who have been deeply impacted by his positive, kind hearted nature. In retirement, he still leads and serves others on a daily basis. Most recently, he has been tutoring ESL students at Lincoln School virtually. We are so thankful for his friendship and support at the PPS Foundation. Thank you, Mike. You truly are a HERO!

Check Out Buzz Chats: a PPS Foundation Video Series!
Every month 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 January 21st, we caught up with New York Times bestselling author Marc Eliot. We also chatted with Nikki Romain from Art, Inc and Carolina Huser from the Peoria Friendship House on February 11th. Check out the videos below!

Buzz Chats is held on select Thursdays at 6:30 PM and can be viewed via our Facebook page. The conversations are both fun and informative. Be sure to check our next one on February 25th with students for Woodruff Career & Technical Center.
Buzz Chats with Marc Eliot on January 21 and Nikki Romain and Carolina Huser on February 11
Another Way to Support the PPS Foundation
Little gifts can be very meaningful. 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. Plus, your donation will go towards our Right Now Fund which is used for where Peoria Public Schools needs it the most.
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, Alex Elger
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)