We are Walther, the last Lutheran High School in Chicagoland.
Follow us as we make plans for our future!
From the desk of our Advancement Director.
February, 2022
Tim Bouman, Head of School

Bronco family,

Greetings from Walther! Here on the corner of 9th and Chicago in spite of the cold, in spite of the snow, and in spite of the pandemic that just won't go away, I am happy to let you know, friends, that we are thriving. Every morning we open our doors and 270 young men and women walk in to be academically challenged and spiritually nurtured. We thank God for the opportunity to serve our students, and we also thank God for their families who choose Walther for their education. 

So what have we been up to? The most significant piece of news so far in 2022 is that Walther's Strategic Planning Committee has completed a five-year Strategic Plan to guide our steps into the future. With God's grace, we have a roadmap for the future that will help us improve our programming, enhance our facilities, and build upon our foundation for a strong financial future. More details will be shared in the near future. In addition to the plan it produced, the process was an invigorating one that engaged representatives of all of Walther's stakeholders. Stay tuned!

Meanwhile, our students continue to take advantage of all we have to offer. Our brand new Bowling Team began its season with a win, and our wrestlers, basketball players, cheerleaders and pep band members are competing and performing, using their God-given talents to shine! Finally, our Student Council has put together a slate of meaningful activities to celebrate Black History Month, including activities that are both educational and fun. Check out our Facebook page to see what transpires over the course of the month!

Finally, wherever you are, and whatever your connection to Walther is, we wish you God's peace and hope to see you at an upcoming event!

Blessings,

Tim Bouman

Sally Ruecking, Director of Advancement


Happy February, Walther Family!

I wanted to take the time to thank so many people who have supported Walther throughout two years of a pandemic, which is also when I became a Walther Bronco. Your generous donations has changed the trajectory of this school, providing for upgrades in our school building and campus. It has also provided new busses, an upgraded STEM room, more STEM program resources that are as competitive as public schools, and more resources for our athletics and music and band departments. We are so grateful!

Yet, we still face challenges. Many of our families are still struggling financially which means we have to dig deeper to provide scholarship and needs based tuition assistance. Our teachers and staff are long overdue for raises that allow this school to be more competitive in retaining wonderful employees and to attract new talent.

Among some of the challenges in my department was to postpone the three planned Bronco Benefit events, which have now been scheduled for May. It’s also been hard to secure high quality auction items since so many past partners and opportunities for theatre, restaurants and resorts are no longer giving to worthwhile causes until things stabilize with their businesses. If you are reading this and can help, please contact me. You will be able to register for the three benefits soon for either a live “gala” event, a casual event for more recent graduates, or a virtual event, which provides an opportunity for connections if you live out of state. Also, we are hosting our second annual 5K on Saturday, June 4. Registration for that is now open on raceroster.com. This is a family friendly event, but is also a competitive 5K that attracted runners last year that had no previous relationship with Walther—and, as we grow our community awareness and partnerships, this is a real WIN for this school!

In spite of Covid, I am hopeful for the future of this school. The new walkway with its engraved pavers have brought back so many alumni to leave their “footprint” to honor their years here. And, we have even had alumni who haven’t seen the school in years come back to visit. If you have not returned to us or contacted us, please make sure I have your current email address and mailing address. So many alumni contact me to locate former classmates-you might be one of them!

Finally, please pray and consider leaving Walther in your estate planning. Leaving Walther in your will ensures that more students will have the chance to be educated in a Christian school, guided by amazingly talented teachers and staff, have multiple choices for extracurricular activities, and to be academically challenged. The success of so many alumni says it all-Walther is a wonderful place that teaches lifelong habits and offers lifelong friendships.

Thank you for being part of the Walther community! 

Sally Ruecking
WALTHER EVENTS!

In 2022, there are several events you can attend to support Walther!

New Dates Below!
Mark your calendars!

May 14, 2022 at 6 pm
Bronco Benefit at Maggiano's
Little Italy, Schaumburg, IL

March 20, 2022
New Event: Bronco Benefit Junior
6 pm at the school. This event is for Alumni Classes of 1990 to 2021

May 21, 2022 at 6 pm
Second Annual Virtual Bronco Benefit will be hosted across the USA via Zoom

June 4, 2022
Second Annual Bucking Bronco Run/Walk at the school and surrounding neighborhood. Registration is open at: raceroster.com


Meet: Daniel Saeedi, Alumni, Attorney and our Keynote Speaker for Career Day April 8

Daniel is a graduate of Walther’s 2001 class, and played football, baseball and band for Walther. In 2005, he graduated from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign. In 2008, he graduated magna cum laude from The John Marshall Law School, where he also was a member of The John Marshall Law Review.
 
Daniel is now a partner at Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP, and is in his 14th year of practice.  Daniel focuses his practice on issues relating to employment law, data privacy, and information security. He represents public and private companies worldwide, and leads a team of lawyers in a nationally recognized practice focusing on consumer and employee privacy issues related to a variety of different technologies, including those that employ artificial intelligence and machine learning. This cutting edge practice touches on several industries, including manufacturing, logistics, health and medical devices, food, entertainment, retail and online services.  
 
Daniel is a Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/US), which is the gold standard certification for data privacy professionals. He also has been honored by the magazine Chicago Lawyer and Crain’s as one of the 40 Illinois Attorneys under 40 to Watch, was also selected by Crain’s as one the “Notable Minorities in Accounting, Consulting & Law,” and by SuperLawyers magazine as a “Rising Star.” He has been selected to speak for both the Sedona Conference and iTechLaw, which are the two most renown technology-themed legal associations in the world. 
 
Daniel also serves as the coach of the John Marshall Law School “VIS” International Law School competition, and as part of this, he takes a team of students each year to Hong Kong to compete against universities around the world. He also is a member of the Board of Governors for the Illinois State Bar Association, a 30,000 member organization. Finally, Daniel is a member of his law firm’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee, and also provides training on implicit bias and diversity issues to hundreds of attorneys each year. 
 
Daniel is a resident of Naperville, and is celebrating his tenth anniversary this year with his wife Daniela. He also has two sons that are his pride and joy: Lucas and Nicolas. 
 
Editors Note: At Career Day, Daniel will be discussing the variety of career choices within the field of Law, as well as thinking about the opportunities in many careers to consider when choosing a school after Walther.


WALTHER IS PROUD
OF OUR NEW
BOWLINGTEAM!
Our students expressed an interest in bowling and are very excited that we have formed a team that is already crushing it!

The team consists of both male and female students, and recently won a match with Lisle High School with a score of 1906 to 1925. Go Broncos!

From recent grads to alumni from many years ago, all say that they would not have had the myriad of opportunities in other schools that was offered at Walther.
Meet our new Middle School Teacher:
Jonathan Saucedo

Greetings, fellow Broncos! I am thrilled to join the Walther Christian Academy team as the newest Middle School Teacher. 

I was born and raised in River Forest; just a few minutes away from Walther Christian Academy where I attended Roosevelt Middle School, and later, Oak Park and River Forest High School. During my high school years, I formed an interest in theatre, inspired by many teachers, theatre directors, and Speech and Drama Team Coaches. I took my passion for theatre and chose to major in Theatre and Education, earning my Professional Educators License in the areas of Theatre/Drama and English/Language Arts for grades 6-12 from Loyola University Chicago, studying along the beautiful shores of Lake Michigan. 

Upon graduation in 2003, I began teaching Integrated Performing Arts at Loyola Academy in Wilmette, IL, which is where I completed my student teaching experience. Over the years, Loyola Academy has welcomed me back to teach Theatre courses and I cherish those experiences where I continued to serve the Jesuit traditions–focusing on helping others. My road has not been a linear one, bringing me to London, England where I earned my Teaching English as a Second or Other Language (TESOL) Certification and as a bonus, traveled throughout England and Paris. I have also taught Language Arts at the Middle School Level and tutored in Chicago Public Schools through the Princeton Review. As an actor, I continued to audition for stage roles while testing the waters as a manager for Courtyard Marriott Hotels by day and Assistant Coaching for the Speech and Drama Team at my alma mater, Oak Park and River Forest High School with my teachers from years past. 

I spent several years working at Oak Park and River Forest High School as a 1:1 Instructional Aide in the Special Education Division. Although my passion was in teaching and acting, I grew to love the field of SPED and the students I served who are now adults and I enjoy maintaining those relationships as we don’t always know what happens to our kids after they have graduated, but I have a privilege to still know them, just as I continue to seek advice from my mentors. As your children have likely told you, I was sidelined by my own disability several years ago. After working with many children and teenagers with profound needs, I was diagnosed with an autoimmune condition that took my mobility and speech away. As a teacher and actor, I looked to my former students for inspiration and through much ongoing physical, speech, and occupational therapy, I was graced with the ability to live my life again, differently, but able to return to teaching and acting.

Three years ago, I returned to Roosevelt Middle School, where I graduated many years ago and began working as a substitute teacher, then Theatre and Typing Teacher, and once again as an Instructional Aide–I came full-circle. With God’s grace, I found Walther Christian Academy and am ecstatic to be part of the team as your Middle School ELA/Social Studies/Theatre and World Literature (9th grade) teacher. When not at Walther, I am home, earning my degree in Master of Arts in Writing with an emphasis in Creative Nonfiction with an expected conferment in 2023 when I hope to moonlight as a professor of writing. Though my plate is quite full, I do continue to write with a forthcoming nonfiction story coming this March and a one-act play that is in the workshopping process. Come summer, I plan to continue auditioning as a freelance stage actor in Chicago. I currently live with my family in North Riverside who help me to adjust to my new reality as an ambulatory wheelchair user, and as I tell your children: we all need help in this life at one time or another. We strive for progress, not perfection. Thank you for having me here. 

Warmly,
Mr. Jonathan Saucedo
Our winter installation has been completed, but please order today for Spring!

The time is NOW to become a permanent part of Walther by purchasing an engraved paver today! You can purchase one on our website by clicking the link above to honor your time here at Walther, thank a parent for sending you here, thank a teacher or honor a memory.
Pavers are $200 each.
To Our Donors...
Walther would not exist without you!

To all ALUMNI: We are asking every one of you, regardless of where you are in life, to consider including Walther Christian Academy in your will.
Leaving a legacy at Walther means that more students will experience the joy of attending a school that truly cares about them and that your legacy will be helping students tomorrow.

Please contact Sally_Ruecking@WaltherAcadamy.org to discuss your wishes.