Better Winter 2021

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Power Philanthropy 2021

Gift Guide Guide To Giving Philanthropy Awards

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weekends are for house hunting

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Reasonable Philanthropy My phone has been busier than usual lately. It’s more than the post-Labor Day rush though. It’s due to the article, “Directing Philanthropy to Do the Most Good” that appeared in the September 7th edition of The New York Times. The article is about Princeton professor Peter Singer, who won the 2021 Berggruen Prize, and his philosophy that “encourages people to have reason, rather than empathy, guide their philanthropy.” My clients want to know my opinion on his viewpoint. People are calling me because they know that helping clients create a mindful approach to charitable giving is a part of our standard of care. In my thirty years as a financial advisor, I’ve watched hundreds of clients give away generous amounts of their money, without any type of strategic plan. They write a check for a couple of hundred dollars, buy a table at a fundraiser, or bid generously in a silent auction. While “every dollar counts” to many organizations, like Singer, I believe that donations should not be ad hoc. Instead, philanthropy should be approached with forethought, and it should be part of an overall wealth-management strategy. I believe that families or individuals who are fortunate enough to be able to make sizable donations should do so mindfully and with reason.

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How to Identify Your Reason What are your personal values? Giving to charity is a direct reflection of your personal values. Therefore, spend a few minutes identifying those values. Some might be health, education, leadership, creativity, justice, family. A web search can lead you to a multitude of worksheets that help people identify their values. What cause supports those values? If protecting children is your top value, then decide how to help. Consider if you’re most interested in providing healthcare, early learning, a safe after-school environment, food, scholarships, etc. Then, evaluate the various organizations that support those goals. What impact do you want to make? Let’s be reasonable. We don’t all have the resources of the Bill and Melinda Gates. Start by thinking about who you want to help and the scale you want to provide. For example: • Supporting families at a local shelter vs. building and staffing a new shelter. • Providing a scholarship for one student or multiple students to attend a university. • Purchasing needed medical supplies or equipment vs. building a new hospital.

Next, find the organization to match your goal. Consider if the group has the infrastructure to accomplish your objective. If they can’t execute on your goal/vision, the money may be wasted. Who do you trust? For many of us, the trustworthiness of a charity relates to whether or not the donations reach the intended recipients. We want to ensure that no one is running off with the funds and they aren’t being wasted on administrative expenses. Charity Navigator, “the largest independent evaluator of U.S. charities”1 is one possible starting point. If you really want to make a commitment to a philanthropic organization, I suggest you dig deeper and get to know the people who are running the organization and its inner workings. Websites, donor solicitations, events, and social media are one way to evaluate an organization. But remember, those are marketing pieces designed to get you to donate. Often chockful of photos and quotes, they’ll tug your heartstrings, but are light on substance. I think that annual reports are a better tool. They help you identify: 1. Effectiveness: The number of people being helped, the program’s short-term and long-term outcomes.

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2. Efficiency: The annual spending vs. budget, operating expenses as percentage of budget, staffing levels, and any unusual expenses or liabilities. 3. Leadership: Who the President and staff are. You will also see who serves on the board, who they are, and what their background is. Note, you may have to dig a little once you see the names. Ask questions when the leaders are all in the same family or if there has been a lot of turn over. 4. Growth potential: If the organization is looking to grow, open new facilities, serve a wider audience. Plus, you can learn about upcoming projects or capital expenditures. 5. Funding: Who the key contributors are. You might be able to see if the donations are from individuals, corporation, or government funding. If the majority of the donations come from one person or family, consider if there’s an influencer behind the scenes. If the charity is government funded, a change in administration may destroy the organization’s cash flow.

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“In Delay There Lies No Plenty”2 While year-end may seem a long time away, waiting until December to consider the tax benefit of your gifting strategy is not acting with reason. Evaluating your options early enables you to be more generous or save on income tax. For example, you can possibly avoid large cash donations by gifting highly appreciated stock. You can also talk to your financial advisor about donor-advised funds, donating directly from an IRA, or establishing your own charitable giving trust. These discussions allow you to maximize the impact of your donations. But remember to think reasonable, create a plan, and then act on it. As legendary basketball coach John Wooden said, “Don’t mistake activity with achievement.”

1 2 William Shakespeare, Twelfth Night (II.iii.)

Kathy Roeser is a Financial Advisor with the Wealth Management Division of Morgan Stanley in (Chicago, IL) . The information contained in this article is not a solicitation to purchase or sell investments. Any information presented is general in nature and not intended to provide individually tailored investment advice. Information contained herein has been obtained from sources considered to be reliable, but we do not guarantee their accuracy or completeness. The strategies and/or investments referenced may not be appropriate for all investors as the appropriateness of a particular investment or strategy will depend on an investor’s individual circumstances and objectives. Morgan Stanley and its Financial Advisors do not provide tax or legal advice. Individuals should seek advice based on their particular circumstances from an independent tax or legal advisor. The views expressed herein are those of the author and may not necessarily reflect the views of Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, or its affiliates. Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, LLC, Member SIPC.

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Contents H O LIDAY 202 1





Diversity Heads for the Water How rowing is cecoming a powerful force for good in the Chicago-area and beyond.


2021’s Top Philanthropists 14 Chicago-area philanthropists making our community a better place in a tumultuous time.


Artists Book House Author Audrey Niffenegger’s Evanston dream project; renovating the Harley Clarke Mansion to become a haven for artists and writers.


Guide to Giving Our annual list is back, helping you decide where to donate your time, money, things and more. If you want to make a difference in Chicago and the North Shore, this is where you start.


SPACES Take a look inside a redecorated historic home in Kenilworth, and a cozy ski country vacation home in Utah.


Destinations Discover everything you need to know to plan the ultimate low-stress ski trip this winter.

Holidays at Home Has the novelty of home cooking worn off? Bust out of your rut this holiday season with the help of local restaurants.



Currents Where to see holiday lights around Chicago and the North Shore, checking in with local restaurant owners, a Q&A with Chicago author Dawn Turner, the Women's Club of Wilmette reopens, and more.


Holiday Gift Guide The best gifts you can find locally to spoil the ones you love most.

IN EVERY ISSUE 14 View from the Team 16 New in Town 84 Calendar 86 Better Makers 98 Reflections To the left: The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe. See more on pg. 76. On the cover: Clockwise from top; Dr. Helene Gayle , Gillian Darlow, Kevin Cross, John Edwardson, John Palfrey, Ellen Alberding, Dr. Willie Wilson and Liz and Eric Lefkofsky. Editor's Note: In our last issue, we incorrectly spelled Gail Sturm Realty. We apologize for the misspelling.

For more up-to-the-minute articles, subscribe to our Better Letter and follow us on Instagram @betterchicago, Facebook and Twitter at @chicagobetter and visit us online at

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THE NUTCRACKER A must-see tradition boldly reimagined for a new generation







20 N. Wacker Dr. | Chicago, IL




Women’s Board of The Joffrey Ballet

Mr. and Mrs. Ronald V. Waters III

Margot and Josef Lakonishok Searle Funds at The Chicago Community Trust

Hancher Auditorium, University of Iowa And the many “Believers”



Sandy and Roger Deromedi

Nancy & Sanfred Koltun 2021–2022 SEASON PARTNERS

Sage Foundation

The Marina and Arnold Tatar Fund for Live Music

The Joffrey Ballet | Photo by Cheryl Mann.

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PUBLISHER Leah Bronson |


MEDIA DIRECTOR Lesley Cesare |





Regional Sales Offices

DINING EDITOR Julie Chernoff

WINE COUNTRY Lesley Cesare |

EDITORIAL INTERNS Melissa Perry, Sam Stevenson


CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Susan Berger, Amber Gibson, Ted Gregory, Tate Gunnerson, David Hammond, Laura Hine, Ruth Fuller, Annemarie Mannion

NEW YORK Karen Couture, Couture Marketing | 917.821.4429 HAWAII Debbie Anderson, Destination Marketing | 808.739.2200


Reader Services


MAILING ADDRESS 203 N. LaSalle Street, Suite 2100, Chicago IL, 60601 PHONE 847.256.4642

PRODUCTION DIRECTOR Alex French CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Mark Blankenstein, Jeremy Pardoe, Margaret Rajic, Paul Richer



INQUIRIES | 818.286.3111 LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Please send letters to Be sure to include your full name, city, state and phone number. Better reserves the right to edit letters for clarity, length and style. SUBSCRIPTIONS Rates are $14.95 for out-of-state subscriptions or free for Illinois subscribers. To subscribe, manage your subscription or change your address visit BULK ORDERS For information on bulk orders of Better, please email

For more up-to-the-minute articles, tips, trends and things to do, subscribe to our Better Letter and follow us online at @betterchicago and MAKE IT BETTER MEDIA GROUP INCLUDES

B et ter i s publ i shed by Ma ke It B et t er L L C, 2 03 N. L a Sa l le S t r e e t , S u i t e 2 1 0 0 , C h i c a g o I L 6 0 6 0 1 . P h o n e : 8 4 7. 2 5 6 . 4 6 4 2 . C opy r ig ht 2 019 by M a ke It B et t er L L C . A l l r ig ht s r e s er ve d . POSTMASTER: Send address changes to: Better, 203 N. LaSalle Street, Suite 2100, Chicago IL, 60601. Make It Better is registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Copyright 2019 by Make It Better LLC. All rights reserved.

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Wine Auction R E T U R N S M AY 1 1 - 1 3 , 2 0 2 3 T H U R S DAY, M AY 1 1 Featured Vintner Dinners in spectacular private homes in Chicago.

F R I DAY, M AY 1 2 Featured Vintner Tasting Reception held in the Grand Foyer of the Lyric Opera House.

S AT U R DAY, M AY 1 3 Wine Auction on stage at the Lyric Opera House.

OUR HONORED GUEST • MAISON JOSEPH DROUHIN The wines of Joseph Drouhin are found on the finest tables, and you can experience them with your bid on two spectacular lots. Travel to the heart of Beaune for a two-night stay in Maison Joseph Drouhin’s beautiful guest home, with a guided tour through their unique historical cellars, an exclusive tasting of the most prestigious and famous wines from Chablis to Côte de Beaune, a private lunch or dinner with a member of the Drouhin family, and more. You also have the opportunity to bring home a Jeroboam of the sensational Clos de Vougeot Grand Cru 2017. Special thanks to all of our Featured Vintners who have so generously supported us across many auctions including: Château D’Esclans, Château Palmer, Futo Wines, Kistler Vineyards, Peay Vineyards, Pinea, Résonance Vineyards, and Spottswoode Estate Vineyard & Winery. A complete list is available on our website.

For more information, visit or email

A COLLECTOR’S DREAM Six decades of the most highly-prized vintages of Chateau d’Yquem from the 20th century could be yours in this priceless lot, donated by Stephen A. Kaplan. Enjoy vintages from 1921, 1934, 1947, 1959, 1967, and 1975.

P I C T U R E D : L A U R E N T D R O U H I N , S U Z A N N E W. M U L S H I N E , N A N C Y S . S E A R L E , E R I C A L . S A N D N E R , A N D E I L E E N M U R P H Y P H O T O BY : J A C LY N S I M P S O N

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View From the Team

Come For Philanthropy, Stay For The Impact Lifestyle Happy Holidays! We hope that you and your family are enjoying the freedom and mounting hope which this season brings. What challenging moments we’ve endured; what energizing opportunities we see. We’re so grateful to be navigating these times as a trusted resource for you as we look to the new year with optimism. As you know, Better leaned into our mission to create helpful, digitalfirst content when the pandemic hit and in response to social justice demands. You responded enthusiastically and our digital platforms grew exponentially — including our Better Letter email newsletters, webinars and virtual fireside chats with trusted thought leaders, promotion of community and partner events, and our articles, guides, and social media. Impactful philanthropy was often at the heart of this content. Our Better Giving Circle participants and matching grant campaigns soared. As you turn these pages, you'll see that philanthropy, positive social impact and digital connections to leaders and organizations you can trust anchor this magazine. Our online content makes it even easier for you to find the information you need and to help others in the process. As we reignited our annual Philanthropy Awards, produced by the Make It Better Foundation, and produced this issue focused on giving, we realized the extraordinary impact that our pandemic response strategy has made. We’re excited to announce that we’re digging even deeper into this

digital-first, philanthropy and social impact strategy for 2022. This includes our commitment to use the Make It Better Foundation to support greater collaboration by nonprofits that meet our “venture philanthropy” standards. To learn more about this and apply for support, please visit Chicago has long led the country in effective philanthropy. We’re 50% more philanthropic than any other U.S. city! When civic leaders collaborate to solve problems through philanthropy, extraordinary good follows. We’re delighted to connect our readers with the stories, individuals and organizations doing this good work, while providing you with helpful lifestyle content online too. If you haven’t done so yet, please join us online: Sign up for our Better Letter, subscribe to BetterTV, and follow us on social, where we hope you'll join the conversation. In the meantime, please enjoy this issue, which makes it easy for you to give, shop and live more purposefully. As CEO of Chicago Community Trust and our feature subject Helene Gayle said at the end of our online Fireside Chat, "We make a living with what we earn, we make a life with what we give." Happy giving. Happy impactful living. Susan B. Noyes, Founder & Chief Visionary Officer Leah Bronson, Publisher

Happy Holidays From our Family to Yours

Susan B. Noyes

Founder & Chief Visionary Officer

Alex French

Production Director

Leah Bronson

Brooke Geiger McDonald


National Digital Content Director

Julie Eldring

Jennifer Woolford

Media Consultant

Strategic Events and Media Consultant

Macaire Douglas Managing Editor

Domenica DiVietro

Marketing Coordinator

Liz Logan

SPACES Editor in Chief

Jessica Dlugosz

Digital Marketing Assistant

Jessica Gliddon

Senior Content Manager and Digital Editor

Jennifer Speaker

Technical Operations Director


Maeve Walsh Controller

Lisa Hilgers Designer

Melissa Perry Editorial Intern

Sam Stevenson Editorial Intern

FOR THE BEST of Better magazine DELIVERED TO YOUR inbox, subscribe to the Better Letter at And follow us on social media @chicagobetter @chicagobetter @chicagobetter @chicagobetter chicagobetter @chicagobetter

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Your Chicago / NEW IN TOWN

New in Town

As we look forward to – or tremble at the very thought of – the colder months, here are some cool new places to dine, shop, and just chill BY DAVID HAMMOND – we tried some 16-day dry-aged bluefin tuna and found it dense with delectable, savory flavor. The owner of Sushi Boutique, Erika London, told Dominguez she “wanted a place her girlfriends could come and chat, have some delicious, sustainable sushi, and maybe a drink.” Dominguez is working to make his new restaurant, a sister to Sushi Suite 202, a place where everyone will be comfortable with familiar favorites as well as some more creative takes on the sushi tradition. 1244 N. Dearborn Parkway, Chicago




m O,


or Spa

eir -


FOOD & DRIN K Pomeroy A café bistro and bar brasserie, Pomeroy in Winnetka upholds the French tradition of laid back yet sophisticated dining. With perennial favorites like escargot

and onion soup, Pomeroy also titillates the palate with creative takes on the Gallic tradition with creations like Mousse Parfait (foie gras, black cherry, crème Chantilly) and a Burger Royale (with caramelized onion,

butterkäse, dill pickles and remoulade). This is a French-forward dining experience that will please Francophiles as well as those just becoming accustomed to French cuisine. 844 Spruce St, Winnetka

Sushi Boutique. Executive Chef Jordan Dominguez tells Better “I’ve been serving sushi for fourteen years, and I can tell you, dry-aging fish in our cooler intensifies the flavor; it’s just incredibly delicious”

Cinnaholic Cinnaholic’s handcrafted rolls, cakes and other baked items are dairy/egg/lactose-free, as well as 100% vegan. Cinnaholic is a breath of fresh air (and a big bite of deliciousness) for those with allergies or other dietary restrictions, as well as for those who simply favor well-made baked goods. You may have seen Cinnaholic co-founders Shannon and Florian

Radke on Shark Tank, when they were offered investment dollars… and then turned it all down to pursue a franchise business model. Coming up, owner Phillip Morales told Better “we’re working with a local rabbi, and soon we’ll also be offering Kosher items.”1596 Sherman Ave, Evanston The Fromagerie and Tasting Room at Uvae Kitchen and Bar By day, The Fromagerie at the warm, old world Uvae Kitchen and Wine Bar is a cheese, wine and charcuterie shop focusing on local products; by night, The Fromagerie becomes a tasting room and local events space. Owner/ sommelier/ educator Lindsey Anderson says she’s committed to an inclusive environment where learning about wine is unpretentious and fun. Sommelierled tastings are held every Wednesday and Saturday, and guest winemaker dinners will be monthly. 5553 N. Clark St, Chicago

New in Town is an ongoing bulletin on new businesses throughout Chicago. Are you or someone you know opening a new business? We want to hear about it! Email

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Kitchen + Kocktails by Kevin Kelley Kitchen + Kocktails is all about “dynamic comfort food,” which means they’ll be serving familiar favorites like fried chicken, shrimp and grits, and other southern classics, but “with a twist.” There will be a robust cocktail program, featuring Black-owned brands that you might not be able to get elsewhere in the city. 444 N. Wabash, Chicago Alla Vita New from the James Beard award-winning Boka Group, Alla Vita – “to life” – offers a casual, family-style menu of fresh and delicious Italian food, simply prepared using the highest-quality ingredients.

In the kitchen is Chef Lee Wolen, who has made a name for himself as one of the most outstanding chefs in the United States. Beverage pairings with Wolen’s creations are drawn from an 80+ bottle wine cellar and cocktail program. 564 W. Randolph St, Chicago Entre Sueños Entre Sueños– “between dreams” – is headed up by Chef Stephen Sandoval, formerly Executive Chef at Rick Bayless’ Leña Brava. Dinner begins with an “interactive food cart” before moving on to what’s described as a “playful yet intimate 14-seat ticketed dining experience” featuring Latin- and

Mediterranean-influenced small plates. Chef Sandoval told us “I bring to the table all my travels, starting in Mexico,” and he describes his cuisine as Baja Mediterranean,” which might be a new category to us. According to Tock, the site where you buy tickets for Entre Sueñnos, Baja-Med is a “new-age cuisine emerging from Baja, which is known for its freedom, and which allows Chefs to integrate personal and multi-cultural influences.” Entre Sueños is currently a pop-up at 4042 N. Pulaski, but Sandoval is looking for investors…and he’s hoping for a brick-andmortar location in the not-too-distant future. Chicago


SHOPPING RH You probably knew it as Restoration Hardware, with a flagship location on the Gold Coast. Now, RH in the Gallery at Oak Brook Center continues the tradition of sourcing and curating hard-to-find and high-quality home furnishings. This new “integrated hospitality experience” includes a glass-enclosed Rooftop Restaurant and Wine Bar that looks out over a landscaped park, all designed to enhance your enjoyment of shopping for furniture and other luxe furnishings to enhance your home. The Gallery at Oak Brook Center Plant Shop Evanston Cooler weather means more time indoors, but you can hold onto the green beauty of warmer weather with plants from the Plant Shop Evanston, a joint venture from Backlot Coffee and Plant Shop Chicago. With retail space full of houseplants of all kinds – including tropicals, succulents and cacti – you can festoon your space with foliage… and maybe try to forget that the nights are getting longer. 1549 Sherman Ave, Evanston Woodland Grove Photography Studio and Gallery Woodland Grove Photography Studio and Gallery combines a 4,500 square foot

Lindsey Anderson, Uvae Kitchen and Bar

fine art photography gallery with studio classes for every level of photographic expertise. You can even work to upgrade your Instagram photo stream with a complementary iPhone Photography mini-class that the studio explains “will transform your iPhone photos from blah to brilliant.” Owner and professional photographer Tobin Fraley told Better, “Someone asked me the other day why a 70-year-old is starting a new business and if it’s just a hobby. The answer I gave is ‘Because I’m a delusional 25-year-old at heart and NO, this is not a hobby.’” 169 N. Archer Ave, Mundelein

Kohler Waters Spa Kohler, the global leader in plumbing, presents a newly redesigned and expanded Kohler Waters Spa in Burr Ridge. With over 14,000 square feet, 21 treatment rooms and a Mediterranean-style café, this updated spa experience also offers state-of-the-art Kohler Vichy Showers for exclusive hydrotherapy. Kohler Waters Spa is built upon the Kohler company’s deep knowledge of water’s healing powers, their experience with high-performance technology, and, of course, their well-known commitment to gracious hospitality. 775 Village Center Dr, Burr Ridge

David Hammond is a Dining and Drinking Editor at Newcity and contributes to the Chicago Tribune and other publications. He supports The Love Fridge, one of the coolest and most effective not-for-profit causes that his daughter is involved in. Unused food from restaurants and other sources is stocked in refrigerators around neighborhoods, so if anyone is hungry they can come-and-get-it, no-questions-asked. WANT MORE? Show your love for our local businesses. Check out new restaurants, shops and other openings at

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How to Raise Emotionally and Socially Healthy Children — and Maximize Their Learning Potential BY AMANDA MARRAZZO

Expert tips from our virtual event "Parenting: Make the Most of Your Child's Education"

Our Panelists

Timothy Dohrer, Ph.D.

Director of Teacher Leadership and Assistant Professor in the Master of Science in Education program at Northwestern University


uring a recent virtual event presented by Make It Better Media Group, child psychology and education experts Meryl Lipton, M.D., Ph.D.; Timothy Dohrer, Ph.D.; and Matthew Pietrafetta, Ph.D., discussed how parents and teachers can best support children’s social, emotional and academic development — from establishing a home environment where children can flourish to understanding their strengths and viewing mistakes as gifts from which to learn. Read their top tips here and watch the full video at 1 Make social and emotional well-being the priority, then tackle academic growth In recent years, teachers, parents and students reported an increase in stress, anxiety, depression and other mental health issues, and the pandemic has only exacerbated this. Dohrer

Meryl Lipton, M.D.

Behavioral Child Neurologist with a background in special education and educational psychology

described the pandemic and its effect on children and adults as “a terrible trauma event … continuing like a tumbling car going through the air.” With such intense levels of stress, it is difficult to make good decisions, connect with peers as well as teachers and parents “causing tremendous stress and anxiety and it is hitting kids hard,” Dohrer said. When these issues go untreated, it creates a major disconnect, making academic learning difficult. 2 Accept kids for who they are and where they are — not where you thought they’d be. Parents need to get in touch with who they are as parents and where their parenting style is rooted. They need to give their children opportunities to build on their strengths and work on areas of growth, and temper their own expectations for their children, Lipton said.

Matthew Pietrafetta, Ph.D. Founder and CEO of Academic Approach

3 Help kids engage in pro-actively planned ’rituals and routines.’To raise a successful, proactive, growth-minded learner, one who is a planner, organizer and able to execute and problem solve, Pietrafetta said, parents should establish and help kids follow a routine. Performing small tasks such as planning what they will wear to school, packing their school bag and making their lunches the night before school “minimizes stress and reactionary chaotic moments,” he said. But, more importantly, the tasks also help develop a sense of self and skills in the child that transfer into real-life scenarios and help develop them into a proactive learner, one who self-advocates and sees mistakes as areas to grow, said Pietrafetta. “The sense of self is absolutely foundational to academic success,” Pietrafetta said. 4 Know the five core Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) skills. Five basic skills to help a child

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grow socially and emotionally are self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship building and good decision-making skills. “When we teach kids about those five SEL skills … kids feel better about themselves, feel better about each other, feel better about school, (they have) better relationships with peers and adults, and we see test scores go up across the board …,” Pietrafetta said, adding learning how to manage stress and anxiety “super-charges learning.” 5 Team up with your child’s teacher. Parents should be aligned with their children’s teachers and keep teachers informed as to any changes or stressors at home. Parents also need to learn how educators are helping their children at school, and then reinforce those practices at home.

6 Ask thoughtful questions and listen mindfully to the responses. Ask open-ended questions such as “How are you feeling?” as opposed to “What grade did you get on that math test?” and just let kids talk and share. Parents need to be the people their children can talk to about anything, without judgement or criticism. “Parents should help kids find their sense of self,” Lipton said. “(It takes) a tremendous understanding of their kids and themselves to see how they affect their kids, so they can put all the information together about themselves and their kids and really become the best parents that they can be.” Amanda Marrazzo has been a news reporter for 25 years. She is a member of the Epilepsy Health Management Board in McHenry County, supports and volunteers for Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy (C.U.R.E) in Chicago, and more.

Tips for Parents: How to Recognize Anxiety and Depression Signs in Children BY DONNA BERRY GLASS If you have a child that is showing signs of feeling anxious, overwhelmed or just plain out-of-sorts these days, you’re not alone. A recent University of Calgary study found that symptoms of anxiety and depression have doubled in kids since the start of the pandemic in early 2020. Here are some tips to help spot behavior that indicates a child might be asking for help and may not even know it. Triggers Differ By Age Younger children are usually triggered by external stimuli, such as the dark, imaginary monsters, or being away from their parents, whereas teens are more worried about themselves, their academic performance and being socially accepted by others.

Consider Covid's Impact A recent poll found that three out of four middle and high schoolers feel concerned about contracting COVID-19 on campus, in addition to having apprehension about academic achievements and socializing. “We’re seeing untreated kids, who are already vulnerable to anxiety, experience worsening symptoms associated with going back to school and fear of getting sick or getting others sick,” says Dr. John Walkup, Chair of the Pritzker Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health at Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. Signs to Watch For Trouble concentrating, abrupt behavior changes, withdrawal from friends and social situations, constantly asking for reassurance, and difficulty sleeping can all be signs that something is amiss. Online symptom checkers can also help parents figure out if they need to have their child evaluated by a professional. Trust Your Gut and Ask for Help Don't hesitate to reach out to mental health experts for guidance. It’s estimated than one out of eight kids have a mental health issue, yet only one out of three kids ever receives treatment. Many mental health issues can be successfully treated with cognitive behavior therapy, which retrains the brain to approach situations from a new perspective.

Donna Berry Glass is a freelance writer who writes mostly about family and kid-oriented topics. She is a supporter of the California Academy of Sciences, a world class science museum and research institution, and the Institute on Aging which provides much needed services to seniors and disabled individuals.


CAN’T MISS VIRTUAL EVENTS! What’s on Replay at BetterTV Make It Better Foundation’s 2021 PHILANTHROPY AWARDS

On behalf of the Make It Better 2021 Foundation, we hosted the 2021 Philanthropy Awards Celebration on Nov. 16 to honor the recipients of the 2021 Philanthropy Awards — nonprofits that are making a difference and making the community better. You can replay the virtual event, which celebrated the inspirational and innovative winners, dedicated employees and volunteers who keep these nonprofits going strong.

Lifelong Learning: The Benefits of Education at Any Age

Continuing education for personal enrichment and professional development throughout life can be incredibly fulfilling and benefit your brain. We explored ways to keep your mind engaged at any age — from college courses to book clubs and more with speakers from the Alzheimer's Association, the Mesulam Center for Cognitive Neurology and Alzheimer's Disease, and the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute.

SPACES Virtual Event: Designing the Perfect Second Home If you’ve been dreaming of a second home, 2022 seems like the ideal time to make it happen. The pandemic has made it easy to work remotely from whatever your favorite destination may be — whether it’s Park City, Utah, or Paris. Three design experts walked us through the ins-and-outs of creating a dream second home, whether you’re planning to build from the ground up or customize an existing space.

Watch all of these programs on demand at / bettertv.

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YOU SAID IT JAE for continuing to be a philanthropic leader. Always teaches something new and always an inspiration!” — Rita Forden, CEO at the American Osteopathic Foundation via LinkedIn “Terrific interview. Thank you Susan and John for sharing your thoughts with the audience!” — Susan Abrams, CEO at Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center via LinkedIn “Inspirational leadership to behold! Thank you John!” — Gail Sturm, Founder at Gail Sturm Realty LLC via LinkedIn See our latest and upcoming Fireside Chats, including a live event with Mellody Hobson, at

2021 Walk to End Alzheimer's



Gail McGovern, CEO American Red Cross gave proud and gracious recognition to Make It Better Media Group as media sponsor of Red Cross Tiffany Circle Summit during her introductory comments for Blood Saves Lives: Fighting Cancer segment on Oct. 7.

Best of 2021 Virtual Celebration On Sept. 14, we celebrated the Best of 2021 winners virtually with complimentary appetizers and dessert bites courtesy of Koi and Le Sud.

"I'll be thanking you multiple times now for your tremendous support of our first TC virtual Summit... last count we had raised more than $480K. There is no doubt that Better's sponsorship brought us a wider and deeper reach to attract more women donors!" — Janis Tratnik, Tiffany Circle National Council Co-Chair "Thank you so much for your amazing support of the Alzheimer's Association and being such a dedicated partner in the fight against Alzheimer's and dementia! We are so grateful for your support and partnership!" — Kate Shea, VP Of Development (raised $1,154,439 through a Make It Better Media Group Matching Grant).

“Delicious food Sandy (Koi)! WOW! Cannot wait to bring our family in. Thank you for your generosity.” — Leah Bostrom, Chia Leah “Congrats to everyone and can’t wait to meet you all in person. Susan ...thanks for the remote boat party!” — Rob Thompson, Arlen Music Productions Founder’s Fireside Chat with John A. Edwardson On Oct. 4, our Founder and Chief Visionary Officer Susan B. Noyes had a live event with John A. Edwardson, former United Airlines president and CEO of CDW, and current co-chairman of Advance Illinois.

Andrea Densham, The Shedd Aquarium, a 2021 Eco-Warrior

HELP US HONOR THE BEST IN OUR COMMUNITY AND BEYOND Each month we publish an inspiring authoritative list, which would not be possible without your valuable feedback. If you have someone you want to nominate, please email us at January: Fitness Trendsetters & Trailblazers February: Top Winter Olympians March: The Most Inspiring Athletes April: Eco-Warriors to Emulate May: Most Powerful Women Discover our published lists at

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU! “Outstanding session! Appreciate you coordinating this, Susan. And, heartfelt thanks to

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Chicago Sky Owner Michael Alter

Discusses the Path to their 2021 WNBA Championship Win, and What It Will Take to Have Equity in Women’s Sports


Michael shows off the Championship Trophy

The Chicago Sky won its first WNBA Championship on Oct.17, bringing a longawaited title home. The impact of the franchise winning this title, as well as the next steps for the organization, were discussed with Chicago Sky owner Michael Alter on Nov. 1 during a virtual fireside chat. Here’s what's in store for the award-winning team. The Sky and the city of Chicago Alter never thought he would be involved in sports, let alone a women’s basketball team. The owner is also the president and owner of the Alter Group, a commercial real estate developer. His involvement in sports changed when he had the opportunity to meet some WNBA players. This is when Alter learned that Chicago didn’t currently have a team. The WNBA was founded on April 22, 1996 for context: this fact left Alter “embarrassed and shocked.” He invested in the Sky back in 2005, but it was this season where the team won its WANT MORE? See the entire Fireside Chat with Michael and Susan on For more Chicago Sky coverage, visit

first WNBA championship. Alter spoke on the importance of what this accomplishment means for the team and the city. “You know, the city has been going through a lot, we all have with COVID and then with, you know, stuff in the city, the inequities, and the crime and violence, and so I think it was like a huge release for, for so many people in the city and why so many people have been excited and engaged (...) by the championship,” said Alter. He stressed the idea of there needing to be a strong need for something positive that all of the city could share, and this championship run was just that. “It was everyone’s dream, everyone’s victory, and everyone’s championship,” Alter said. When asked about the impact of this championship, Alter alluded to the history of Chicago’s sports teams and how he wants the Sky to be regarded on a similar level. “What we’re hoping is something, you know, we’ve been working on it for a long time in terms of really building the engagement and having the city really adopt this team the way it’s adopted the men’s teams.” 3 Key Players involved in this championship Alter mentioned three players who were very impactful in the success of the Sky this year. The first being Courtney Vandersloot, who Alter describes as “the heart and soul of this team.” She was drafted by the Sky in 2011 and has remained loyal to the team her entire WNBA career. “She was very committed to making things work in Chicago,” said Alter.

Kahleah Copper was another major factor in the team’s championship. She was traded to the Sky back in 2017. Copper was the MVP of the finals and was a core piece in the team’s run. Lastly, Alter stated that Candace Parker signing with the team this year was a huge addition. Parker has spent her whole career with the Los Angeles Sparks, even winning a title for the organization. Alter said they persuaded her to come back to her home state of Illinois, as Parker is originally from the town of Naperville.

Candace Parker

How can the WNBA compete for more financial resources? Despite the popularity of this year’s championship, Alter acknowledges that women’s leagues don’t have the same financial resources as most men’s leagues. “We have a long way to go in equity and in pay in professional sports between men and women. A very long way

to go,” said Alter. Alter recognizes that the WNBA needs to generate more money, but he’s proud of the strides that have been made so far. The latest collective bargaining agreement has increased players pay, and provided further resources. Additionally, the league has reached a new 10-year TV deal with ESPN.

Sam Stevenson is a journalism and media communication major at North Central College in Naperville. He is an editor in chief for his school’s newspaper and he freelance writes for several sites, including Fansided and 24/7 Sports. He is proud to support Movember, an annual event to raise awareness of men's health issues.

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Connect With Us



The best events can be found at

TOP GRAM "Every time I walk by this spot at South Pond (which is most days), I take in the mood of the city via this view. It feels like checking on a close friend and it’s a true joy. The weather on Wednesday, September 8th was beautiful for a late afternoon walk. When I got to the north end of South Pond, I was moved by the contrast of the clouds against the dark blue sky and how it’s reflection in the pond created a sense of motion of the clouds to the camera. All of this framed Chicago’s skyline, layered behind a pedestrian walkway, symmetrically with lush green on either side. I got low to be closer to the water and maneuvered my iPhone behind the metal lattice beneath the guardrail to capture this image." - Mark Blankstein, @markblankstein on Instagram (Shot on iPhone 12 Pro Max, ProRaw image, f1.6, ISO 32, 1/2857s). Want to see your photo in print? Tag us @betterchicago with your best snap.

The top leaders in the health, wellness and beauty technology space from Chicago and beyond.


Sign Up Do you receive our weekly Better Letter? It’s filled with ideas for weekend fun and then some. Sign up for our e-newsletters at and follow us online. @chicagobetter






From tablescapes to holiday appetizers, we have your ultimate guide for hosting.



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Introducing the EMSCULPT NEO Medical Gym [Practice Logo] Introduces the EMSCULPT NEO Medical Gym 4 sessions [Practice Logo] EMSCULPTNEO.COM | #EMSCULPT

Introduces the EMSCULPT NEO Medical Gym On average

30min session

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fat reduction* Roughly-30% equivalent to 12-16 weeks of HIIT*

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BRING IT ON! Results and patient experience may vary. As with any medical procedure, ask your doctor if the EMSCULPT Neo® procedure is right for you. EMSCULPT NEO® is intended for non-invasive lipolysis (breakdown of fat) of the abdomen and reduction in circumference of the abdomen with Skin Type I to Skin Type III. EMSCULPT NEO® is also cleared for improvement of abdominal tone, strengthening of the abdominal muscles and development of firmer abdomen. Strengthening, toning, firming of buttocks, thighs, and calves. Improvement of muscle tone and firmness, for strengthening muscles in arms. ©2020 BTL Group of Companies. All rights reserved. BTL®, EMSCULPT NEO® and EMSCULPT® are registered trademarks in the United States of America, the European Union, or other countries. The products, the methods of manufacture or the use may be subject to one or more U.S. or foreign patents or pending applications. Trademarks EMSCULPT®, EMSCULPT NEO®, EMSELLA®, EMTONE®, EMBODY®, and HIFEM® are parts of EM™ Family of products. *Data on File.

Results and patient experience may vary.

Results and patient experience may vary.

As with any medical procedure, ask your doctor if the EMSCULPT Neo®Emsculpt_Neo_NEWS_Patient-Facing-Medical-Gym_ENUS100 procedure is right for you. EMSCULPT NEO® is intended for non-invasive lipolysis (breakdown of fat) of the abdomen and reduction in circumference of the abdomen with Skin Type I to Skin Type III. EMSCULPT NEO® is also cleared for improvement of abdominal tone, strengthening of the abdominal muscles and development of firmer abdomen. Strengthening, toning, firming of buttocks, thighs, and calves. Improvement of muscle tone and firmness, for strengthening muscles in arms. ©2020 BTL Group of Companies. All rights reserved. BTL®, EMSCULPT NEO® and EMSCULPT® are registered trademarks in the United States of America, the European Union, or other countries. As with any medical procedure, ask your doctorof if the Emsculpt Neo® is right for Neo® is intended forapplications. non-invasive lipolysisEMSCULPT®, (breakdown of fat) ofNEO®, the abdomen The products, the methods manufacture or the useprocedure may be subject to one oryou. moreEmsculpt U.S. or foreign patents or pending Trademarks EMSCULPT EMSELLA®, and reduction in circumference of the abdomen with Skin Type I to Skin Type III. Emsculpt Neo® is also and cleared forare improvement of abdominal tone, strengthening of the abdominal muscles and development of firmer abdomen. Strengthening, toning, firming of buttocks, thighs, and calves. Improvement of EMTONE®, EMBODY®, HIFEM® parts of EM™ Family of products. *Data on File.

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muscle tone and firmness, for strengthening muscles in arms. ©2020 BTL Group of Companies. All rights reserved. BTL® , EMSCULPT NEO® and EMSCULPT® are registered trademarks in the United States of America, the European Union, or other Emsculpt_Neo_NEWS_Patient-Facing-Medical-Gym_ENUS100 countries. The products, the methods of manufacture or the use may be subject to one or more U.S. or foreign patents or pending applications. Trademarks EMSCULPT®, EMSCULPT NEO®, EMSELLA®, EMTONE®, EMBODY®, and HIFEM® are parts of EM™ Family of products. *Data on file.

899-79EMCNSIFMAENUS100; Emsculpt_Neo_LF_Stand-insert_FMA_ENUS100

Roughly equivalent to 12-16 weeks of HIIT* NorthshoreDermo_Better_1121_FNL.indd 1

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Your Chicago T H E P E O P L E . T H E P L AC E S . T H E C AU S E S .

IT’S GLOW TIME Where to see the holiday lights around Chicago and the suburbs this season

The Botanic Garden

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That Holiday Feeling The magical holiday season is upon us! Here are eight spots where you can savor seasonal light installations.

Art on theMart

Lightscape at Chicago Botanic Garden The Botanic Garden will have thousands of twinkling lights, including the popular Cathedral of Light, and new colorful delights that will help you make holiday memories. Advanced reservations are highly suggested, as many dates do sell out. Thru Jan. 2, 2022.

Mag Mile Lights Festival & Christmas Tree Michigan Ave. will shine bright all winter long with illuminated trees lining the Magnificent Mile.

Amaze Light Festival at Impact Field The village of Rosemont will welcome the Amaze Light Festival this holiday season, featuring more than one million holiday lights, a holiday market, train rides, “Polar Peak” tubing, Santa’s Workshop, and more. Tickets required. Thru Jan. 2, 2022.

Art on theMart

rink, kiddie train rides, Santa’s Village, a holiday beer garden and so much more. Tickets required. Thru Jan. 2, 2022.

Kohlights: A Mesmertastic Holiday Lightacular Let the kids take charge this holiday at the Kohl Children’s Museum annual Kohlights Lightacular! An outdoor experience with interactive light installations along the way, the Lightacular will feature a Twinkle Train, Tunnel of Shadows, festive firs, a tiny Tinsel Town, and more. Select dates thru Dec. 31. Kohlights

Illumination: Tree Lights at The Morton Arboretum The ninth year of Illumination promises to be a special one. Embracing the Arboretum’s mission and identity as The Champion of Trees, the exhibition will take guests on a journey that begins with a passage through a tunnel of lights and past favorites such as Symphony The Morton Woods, Woodland Arboretum Wonder and Crystal Promenade, as well as a new, “Human and Nature” display. Tickets required. Thru Jan. 2, 2022.

Light Up the Lake! at Navy Pier Head to the Pier to explore a variety of holiday activities including lightsculpture displays with more than 600,000 twinkling lights, an Alpine ice

ZooLights at Lincoln Park Zoo ZooLights illuminates the zoo with dazzling lights and dynamic displays. A new 18-foot holiday tree in the Pepper Family Wildlife Center will certainly add to the cheery atmosphere. This year, the event will offer sensory-friendly visit times. There will be a free members-only night on Dec. 13. The zoo is also offering free public nights Dec. 14, 20,21, 27, and 28. Sensory-friendly visit times on Dec. 15 from 4-6 p.m. Reservations required. BETTER HOLIDAYS: For more holiday happenings around Chicago and the suburbs, subscribe to the Better Letter to receive our roundup of the 31 best things to do in Chicago in December. Visit


Art on theMART is continuing its holiday program with The Joffrey Ballet this year. Showcasing images from the Christmas classic “The Nutcracker” and set to music from Tchaikovsky’s beloved score, the 30-minute program of projections will be shown nightly at 7:30 and 8:00 p.m.

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Woman’s Club of Wilmette reopens six years after devastating fire JOE COUGHLIN, THE RECORD NORTH SHORE

Seeing was believing when the community got a look at the rehabilitated Woman’s Club of Wilmette in October.



ix-plus years after the historic building at 930 Greenleaf Ave. burned nearly to the ground, club leadership opened the doors for a ribbon-cutting ceremony led by the Wilmette-Kenilworth Chamber of Commerce. “Congrats to the members who worked so hard to get this up and running and to be a space for the entire community,” Wilmette Village President Senta Plunkett said at the ceremony. That community helped the club raise $2.5 million to fund Phase 1 of the rehab project, which rebuilt most of the building, according to Donna Bliss, the co-chairwoman of the club’s development and fundraising committee. Phase 1, including the fundraising and construction, took about three and a half years, but Covid-19 precautions kept the community at-large from seeing the work until now. Longtime club members Barbara Roberson and Janet Marsh were on hand to check out the new digs. Roberson praised the club’s hard work and perseverance in the face of such adversity, while Marsh said she is looking forward to a lot of good times in the new facilities. The Woman’s Club of Wilmette debuted 130 years ago in 1891. According to its website, the club was instrumental in the development of the park district, library, local PTOs, the League of Women Voters and more. In the past decade, the site says, the club donated more than $400,000 in cash and in kind to community organizations. A fi re broke out at the building the morning of Feb. 17, 2015. At the time, a space heater was the suspected cause of the blaze, according to sources on the scene that day; however, an official cause was never determined by local fi re officials.

The flames engulfed much of the southern half of the building and caused extensive damage throughout. While the club’s auditorium on the northern half held, it suffered severe smoke and fi re damage. The auditorium was separated from Phase 1 fundraising, and Bliss said the club hopes to raise $3 million to rehab it in Phase 2. During the pandemic, the woman’s club hosted virtual events and helped operate the Community Caretakers Program, which did everything from check in on homebound residents to fi nd and schedule vaccines for community members.

The club is back to hosting events, including renting its facilities to outside parties, and it is actively seeking members and funders for the next steps in the rebuild project. “We are really basking in the legacy and our membership,” Bliss said. “We are definitely looking to further and continue to be a major force in the community.” This article originally appeared in The Record North Shore, a local news nonprofit. WANT MORE? Keep up with everything going on in your community. For more Wilmette news, visit

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Founder of Highland Park recruitment firm talks CSR and giving back BY PATRICK REGAN

Charlie Saffro is the founder and president of CS Recruiting, a 35-employee recruitment firm in the supply chain, transportation and logistics industries based in Highland Park. “It’s our mission to make meaningful connections to empower and inspire others to discover their full potential; that applies to our clients, candidates, and team,” Saffro said. Saffro is a dedicated yogi, mother of three boys and volunteers with Feed My Starving Children. She recently shared her thoughts on the importance of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) with Better.

comes from making introductions, so there is a tangible social value in the work we do. Whether we are helping individuals find their next job or assisting companies in identifying the perfect person for their hiring needs, we can make an impact and enhance the lives of others. We are also big believers that taking care of our team members is our No. 1 priority. By investing in them and recognizing their purposeful work, we see hard work and productivity in return, which enhance our bottom line.

What CSR practices do you employ at your business? One of our five core values is “Make a Difference,” and this is something we focus on both internally with our team members and externally with our candidates (job seekers), clients, and community. Giving back to the community has always been a priority and something we encourage and support on a companywide and individual basis. Prior to the pandemic, our team used in-person volunteer opportunities as a chance to connect as a team and bond over giving back to our community. On a local level, we supported our neighborhood food pantry by designating time on Monday afternoons for our employees to volunteer on-site. Many of our team members got into the habit of not only donating their time, but also doing their part to collect or purchase food items, knowing that they would be offered to local families in need. In addition to the food pantry, we have also been involved in a nationwide charity called “Feed My Starving Children,” where our team spends two days a year packing food for under-privileged children in developing countries. Once the pandemic hit and there were restrictions for in-person volunteer opportunities, our team shifted focus to help others by leveraging the skills we know best, resume writing and interview prep. We are currently joining forces with organizations

What philanthropic endeavors are important to you and/or your company and why? As a woman-owned organization, we are passionate about supporting other women. Our team seeks opportunities where we can volunteer our time and recruiting expertise to benefit women that might be struggling with their job searches. Additionally, we can’t play in the transportation industry without supporting truck drivers! While we don’t recruit truck drivers specifically (we focus more on executive-level recruitment), we recognize that trucks make our world go ‘round and you can’t move freight without drivers. We’ve made it a tradition to make holiday donations on behalf of our clients to provide truck drivers with Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners while on the road.

WANT MORE? Learn about new developments in the CSR world at

Charlie Saffro

that support females that have experienced trauma and are looking to re-enter the working world … These small sacrifices of time have brought our team together for a greater good and we see tremendous value in supporting our team to volunteer during business hours and showing our support for them and these causes. What CSR trends are you seeing in your industry and how has that changed how you conduct business? Our team has transitioned to a fully virtual environment, and we are seeing a surprisingly high number of companies in our space pivot to this model as well. In addition to employee happiness and increased productivity, we are proud to make a positive impact on the environment by reducing hours upon hours of unnecessary commuting. Not having a commitment to an office space not only provides significant financial savings but also helps eliminate unnecessary waste with utilities and office supplies. How do you balance the importance of CSR while meeting revenue demands? We are fortunate to be in the business of connecting people ... Our revenue

What’s next for you and your business and where do you see things progressing in the coming months with regard to CSR and/or the pandemic? The future is bright for CS Recruiting and I’m excited to see where we go as we grow and continue to add to our own team. The job market is insanely strong, and we’ve never seen more opportunities to use our influence and lead by example by promoting a human approach to business. The pandemic did a number on everyone and created feelings of uncertainty and burnout. I’ve felt the burnout personally and seen it with my colleagues and within my network. Because of this, I have never been more focused on working for a purpose and going above and beyond to give back internally and externally.

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Coming in Clutch: Evanston’s Latest Brewpub Has Arrived BY MACAIRE DOUGLAS

Convito’s Nancy Brussat and Candace Barocci Warner

North Shore restaurant leaders share lessons learned during the pandemic BY SUSAN BERGER

It’s been a brutal year-and-half for the restaurant industry as a whole, with the Covid-19 pandemic shifting how eateries operate and how customers patronize their favorite dining spots. A few of our favorites were forced to close, but others pivoted, finding ways to stay open, serve their communities, and employ their workers. We asked some of those restaurateurs: what lessons or positives can you take from the pandemic? Here’s the valuable advice they are sharing to inspire all.

The North Shore has a new gathering spot with Double Clutch Brewing Company’s arrival in Evanston on Oct. 29. Inspired by “the long traditions and passions of German brewing,” Double Clutch offers craft beer brewed on site with the finest ingredients and state of the art techniques. Scott Frank of Wilmette is the head brewer, and has included core beers such as Kölsch, Helles Lager, Hefeweizen, Pilsner, Altbier and Rauchbier Helles Lager. Double Clutch also offers a full dining menu that is “American fare with a Bavarian twist,” serving up delicious handcrafted food for lunch, dinner, brunch and late night bites. The heart and soul of this new venture is close to home, as it is community funded and locally owned. It is operated by Mike Chookaszian’s CCH Management, who brought us many of the North Shore’s favorite restaurants, including Napolita Pizzeria & Wine Bar and Pescadero Seafood & Oyster Bar. The 10,000-square-foot space, which showcases an impressive roster of vintage and rare classic cars from Mike’s father, former chairman and CEO of CNA Insurance Companies Dennis Chookaszian, also doubles as an event venue and will often feature live music. They will also offer tastings, brewery tours and special events. 2121 Ashland Avenue, Evanston;

FRANK AND BETSIE’S, GLENCOE Flexibility. “Nothing stays the same," Michael Sheibani, restaurant manager who has been with Frank and Betsie’s for 23 years said. “We feel confident in making our customers feel safe.” EJ’S PLACE, SKOKIE Gabby Littleton, general manager, calls some of the pandemic changes “happy accidents.” They switched from using soda guns and now serve old fashioned coca-cola bottles, touching fewer glasses and providing an experience that is “more old school.” CONVITO CAFÉ & MARKET, WILMETTE “Everyday is different,” said Candace Barocci Warner, co-owner and manager. “We realized how appreciated our great to-go foods were, having been the cornerstone of our business for 41 years.”

Susan Berger is a freelance journalist and lifelong North Shore resident. She is a 24-year breast cancer survivor and longtime health reporter who was only recently made aware of PALB2 mutation, and is very interested in increasing awareness of this genetic mutation that increases one’s risk of breast, ovarian and pancreatic cancer.

WANT MORE? See what other restaurants shared at For more dining content, visit

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Holiday Gift Guide


WE ARE YOUR one stop destination for everything you need this holiday season. Blocks Of Love are signed mini editions of Kerri Rosenthal artwork that are stand alone plexi-glass sculptures. Great gifts, collect them for your bookshelves, coffee tables and place settings.

THE BEAUTIFUL BOX is the ultimate treat for the plant lovers in your life. Each month our Plant Boss curates what’s in season and fabulous. Unique each time, a Beautiful Box might contain a houseplant, topiary, planted pot, bevy of annuals… you pick the frequency of delivery, we ensure the surprise and delight. City Grange Lincoln Square, Edgewater, Beverly and, soon, Winnetka Order at

Frances Heffernan 810 Elm Street, Winnetka, IL (847) 446-2112

GUYS & CO. is your one-stop shop holiday gift headquarters for men and teens. We have the latest trends for clothing, athleisure and lounge wear. Find accessories and grooming gift items for all the guys in the family. Shop in store or online 24/7. Offering in store pick-up or shipping in the US. Guys & Co. Garrity Square 1855-B Deerfield Road, Highland Park, IL (847) 940-4897

EVANSTON ART CENTER The Evanston Art Center’s Annual Winter Arts + Crafts Expo features original, handmade arts and crafts by over 140 selected artisans. This month-long event attracts visitors all over the Midwest region. Opens Saturday, November 20, 2021 - Monday, December 20, 2021. Image by DooHyun Kim. Evanston Art Center 1717 Central Street, Evanston, IL (847) 475-5300

GUA SHA GLOW FACIAL - Sculpt, tone, and

lift. This restorative facial uses a Gua Sha stone to increase circulation and boost overall skin health. You will leave this service with visibly more radiant skin PLUS a “HydroPeptide Take Home Kit” with a Gua Sha stone, and facial oil, to maintain your great results. Egea Spa Dr. Adam Cohen M.D., 1521 Sherman Ave, Evanston, IL (847) 332-2772

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BETTER GIFT GUIDE Although holiday shopping can be exahusting, it is actually good for you. A Harvard Business School study found that giving gifts, money or donating to others increases our happiness more than spending that money on ourselves. So, go ahead and spoil the ones you love this year. Not only will it lift your mood, but your generosity will light up others this season. Here are our foolproof gift ideas for everyone on your list this year.

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CLARE V Simple Tote in Black Suede with Stripes $555-605, 939 W Armitage Ave., Chicago This bag can do it all with effortless sophistication. For that special touch, have it monogrammed with her initials.

ARCH GLOW Botanical Beauty Oil $295, 913 Green Bay Rd., Winnetka The perfect blend of organic and natural botanical oils, this oil is downright amazing, perfect for all skin types and delivers a radiant glow.

LORO PIANA Parksville Turtleneck in Spiced Orange $1,815, 39 E Oak St., Chicago Talk about luxe; Loro Piana’s mockneck sweater is made from soft, fluff y baby cashmere yarn, enhanced by intarsia knit. The style is minimalist, classic and perfect for the season.

BOOK BIN Chanel: The Complete Collections by Patrick Mauriès and Adélia Sabatini

SOLE + LUNA Vitruvi Stone Diffuser

$75, 1151 Church St., Northbrook A Très chic gift for the fashion lover, this book gives a captivating overview of all of Karl Lagerfeld’s Chanel collections, showcasing his creations through original catwalk photography.

$119, 1015 Tower Ct, Winnetka Finally, a diff user that delivers pure organic essence without the eyesore. Pick it up at Sole + Luna in a variety of colors and accompanying Vitruvi scents.

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FOR HIM ERIK’S BIKE SHOP Wahoo Fitness Kickr Smart Trainer $1,199.99, 3801 Oakton St, Skokie Chicago winters are long; treat the biker in your life to a Wahoo Smart Trainer so they can bike on-demand with a trainer that provides a more realistic ride at home (it’s also one of the quietest on the market).

MAZE HOME The Eyes Have It Glasses Holder $80, 735 Elm St., Winnetka A fun and quirky way to display his glasses, this mustache-clad holder is the perfect (and handy) addition to the office.

COWBOYS & ASTRONAUTS The Game Console: A Photographic History from Atari to Xbox by Evan Amos $24.95, 1478 W Summerdale Ave., Chicago Gamers of all ages will enjoy this book that gives a tour through the evolution of video game hardware, with gorgeous full-color photos of 86 consoles.

FEW SPIRITS 10th Anniversary Bourbon $54.99, 918 Chicago Ave, Evanston Celebrating a decade of distilling, this anniversary blend has bold notes of spicy cinnamon, oak and vanilla, with a smooth finish.

SMITH MENS STORE Styling Session and Made-toMeasure Private Appointment 770 N Western Ave #1A, Lake Forest Really spoil the man in your life by booking a private styling session at the Smith Men’s Store in Lake Forest. Established in 1937, they offer a full-service shopping experience and carry a wide variety of classic, timeless and luxury fashion items.

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$3,300, 676 N Michigan Ave Suite 3620, Chicago • With just under a full carat of diamonds, Dana Rebecca’s tennis necklace is the new go-to statement necklace. Available in rose gold, yellow gold or white gold.

Opera Tulle 18-Karat Yellow and White Gold Bracelet $3,500; 62 E Oak St., Chicago Made in Italy, this bracelet is inspired by the ornate motifs seen throughout Renaissance opera houses. The delicate chain, which can be worn at two lengths, is strung with intricate charms.

RAZNY JEWELERS Stephen Webster Thorn Stem Tie Clip $725, 1700 Green Bay Rd., Highland Park & 109 E. Oak St., Chicago • In sterling silver 925, this black rhodium plated tie clip has 130 black sapphire pavé lining the front, making it a stunning and unique tie accessory.


BUNNY & BABE Asha Delphine Pave Stud-Gold Earrings

Price upon request; 1224 Chicago Ave. #102, Evanston This beautiful stack includes four yellow gold band rings with varying textures and diamond settings, including a bezel set diamond eternity band, a band with a textured half dome and more.

$195, 555 Chestnut St, Winnetka These 14K vermeil pave flower stud earrings perfectly pair with almost anything, and add a touch of everyday sparkle.

SWISS FINE TIMING Girard-Perregaux Watch in Sea Hawk Black 49960 Price upon request; 1915 Sheridan Rd., Highland Park & 70 E Walton St., Chicago A gift to be treasured, the Girard-Perregaux watch in Sea Hawk Black is timeless with its 44 mm black stainless steel case, all black dial and matching bezel.

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THANK YOU GIFTS SCHAEFER’S WINES, FOODS AND SPIRITS Bollinger R.D. 2004 Champagne $279.95, 9965 Gross Point Rd, Skokie This vintage is perfect to hold onto, or to pop right away. With flavors of peaches, lemons, hazelnuts and more, it is complex and delicious. It also received 96 points from Wine Spectator.

RARE BY CHALET Houseplants


Price Varies, 3132 Lake Ave., Wilmette Head to Chalet to select a beautiful houseplant from their RARE collection, for a truly unique and beautiful gift that any plant lover will appreciate.

$65, 339 Park Ave, Glencoe A perfect scent for the season, no one would be sad to receive this beautiful candle crafted by a master perfumer. The scents include rubbed sage, Canadian balsam, Moroccan cedar, bay laurel and has a nostalgic hint of firewood.

PAPERSOURCE Rifle Paper 2022 Inspirational Wall Quote Calendar $28.95, 2100 Central St, Evanston Give the gift of organization, and inspiration, with this Rifle Paper illustrated wall calendar.

VOSGES HAUT-CHOCOLAT Ensemble Du Chocolat Classique $135 Based in Chicago, Vosges creates the most delicious and unique chocolates around. This shareable gift set will wow anyone, and includes their quintessential wellness and comfort foods nestled in a beautiful box. B E T T E R H O L I D AY 2 0 2 1 35

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FOR KIDS & TEENS SMALLER THINGS Chicago Pajamas $38 Designed in Chicago, Smaller Things Chicago Pajamas celebrate our favorite city. The print includes the “L”, The Art Institute of Chicago’s Lions, a Chicagostyle hot dog, and more. Even better, they are made from organic cotton.

MCA STORE Rainbow BAJO Blocks $55, 220 E Chicago Ave, Chicago Offering an endless combination of imaginative play, the handmade blocks are an adorable addition to any playroom.

GUYS & CO Kids Beatles Sock Box Set $34, 1855-B, Deerfield Rd, Highland Park Share your love of stellar music by gifting these fun and retro Beatles-themed socks, perfect for those stockings.

THE WILD CHILD Tonie Toniebox Starter Set $99.99, 657 Vernon Ave, Glencoe & 1114 Central Ave., Wilmette One of the hottest gifts for kids is screen free this year. Available in a variety of bold colors, the Toniebox is a portable audio system that plays songs, books and more, with your child’s favorite characters. The starter kit comes with everything your child needs to start enjoying.


OWL CRATE Subscription Boxes

$29, 840 Willow Rd, Suite K, Northbrook & 901 N. Milwaukee Ave, Unit 650, Vernon Hills They’re cute, hip and cozy. What more could your teen ask for? Available in black, white or yellow.

$29.99-$32.99/month Owl Crate is a subscription box that keeps on gifting. Available for teens or youth, the curated boxes deliver signed hardcover books and beautifully curated bookish goodies that kids and parents will love equally.

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FOR FAMILY MOVIE NIGHT SAKS FIFTH AVENUE Barefoot Dreams CozyChic® The Mandalorian™ Throw

ABT Sony Black 4K HDR Home Theater Projector, $5,498

$194, 700 Michigan Ave., Chicago saksfi Who better to help keep you warm while you stream than the ultimate Disney+ darling, Baby Yoda? This buttery soft and machine washable (helpful when you have messy popcorn hands grabbing at it) throw is so snuggly you might want to order a couple to avoid a friendly family Force battle.

GARRETT POPCORN Classic Garrett Mix

Stewart Filmscreen Cima Neve 135” White Fixed Frame Screen, $1,926

$33-$141, Various locations in Chicago & Rosemont Sure, you could pop your own, but why bother when the world’s greatest kernels are popped fresh right here in Chicago. We’re partial to the Celebration Tin fi lled with that sweet and salty combo of cheese and caramel corn. It serves 40 to 50 (or just your family for full season of movie nights).

120 N Milwaukee Ave., Glenview, Named best projector for home theaters by Forbes, the Sony Black 4K HDR Home Theater Projector is as close as you’ll come to bringing the cinema home. Supporting 4K resolution and HDR content, the projector meets its perfect match in a 135-inch Steward Filmscreen.

POTTERY BARN KIDS Organic matching pajamas for the whole family $46-$86, 2A Oakbrook Center Mall, Oakbrook Cozy up in organic Turkish cotton jammies for the whole family. Perfect for those Christmas Eve photos, cuddling by the fire, and nestling all snug in your beds on those cold winter nights.

LOVESAC The Movie Sac $1,100, 4905 Old Orchard Shopping Center, Skokie Need a little extra real estate for sprawling when the whole family is in the mix? The Movie Sac is a comfy beanbag chair big enough to seat two but still compact enough to stick in a corner when you’re not using it. The Durafoam insert is made with recycled material and guaranteed for life, and machinewashable cover makes freshening it up a breeze.

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OONI Ooni Karu 16 Multi-Fuel Pizza Oven


$799, This portable pizza oven is the real deal — the only one recommended for domestic use by the Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana. Any model will make an outstanding pizza, but the new Karu 16 allows multiple fuel options (wood, charcoal, or gas), heats to 950F in 15 minutes, and has a mounted digital thermometer. Add on a pizza peel and you’re good to go. Ooni Pizza Ovens are available locally at Gordon’s Ace Hardware (Chicago), Crate and Barrel, Bloomingdales, Cost Plus World Market, or pre-order the Karu 16 online.

Looking for the perfect thing for the foodie in your life? We’ve got you covered with our 2021 foodie gift guide, packed with can’t-miss presents for your food- and drink-obsessed loved ones!

SAM GOLDBROCH SHARP CO. Sam Goldbroch Sharp Co. Bespoke Knives $500 and up, Sam Goldbroch trained as a chef, cooked with some of Chicago’s top toques, and then became a chef instructor. The man has some serious knife skills, and set out to create the ultimate bespoke knives for the serious cook. From paring knives to chef knives and Nakiri, these are functional works of art. Goldbroch handmakes these beauties from the intricate handles to the gleaming blades. Let him design a knife for your favorite foodie; this is truly a gift to remember and savor.

GROWLER WERKS 128 oz. Brushed Copper Keep-It-Carbonated Growler $259, This copper-plated, gallon-sized pressurized growler is not only gorgeous, but also practical for the beer lover in your life. It will keep beer carbonated for two weeks, so if you have a favorite local brewery that sells by the growler — looking at you, Piece Brewery and Pizzeria and Sketchbook Brewing — you don’t have to worry about your IPA losing its fizz. Works for kombucha, too! Also available in a stainless finish, and in a 64-oz. size.

TRUFF Truff Variety Pack $70, For the true hot sauce aficionado in your life, a triumvirate of truffle-scented hot sauces: Original, “Hotter” and “White Truff.” Truffled hot sauce, you wonder? Is that a thing? Indeed, it is, and you didn’t know you how much you needed it in your life until now. If you love truffles, but don’t dig the hot sauce, don’t sleep on Truff ’s Truffle Mayo and Black Truffle Pomodoro sauce. Or you can always just buy it all.

EVENT|FULL Event|Full Class or Gift Certificate Price varies, Two-time James Beard Award-winning chef Sarah Stegner of Prairie Grass Café in Northbrook has long championed her fellow chefs and local farmers, so her newest project should come as no surprise. Event|Full offers personal experiences for people craving direct connections with the people who create — in all senses — the food we love. Maybe it’s a tour of Rick Bayless’ backyard garden ($100), a Private French Cooking Class at Brindille with Chef Carrie Nahabedian ($1,500), or a virtual Fermentation Fundamentals Class with Jackie Gennett of Bushel & Peck. The list is ever-changing, but always exciting. SHOP FOR GOOD: Find more local gift guides, plus gifts that give back with every purchase, at

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HERE HERE MARKET Female Founders Food Collection from Here Here Market $99, Here Market, a new curated online bazaar featuring artisanal products from Chicago-area culinary creators, all part of a concerted effort to find new sources of revenue during the pandemic. The Female Founders Collection includes Monteverde dried Gnocchetti, Aya Pastry’s granola, Whole-Bean Espresso Blend from Brewpoint Coffee, Masala Chai from Tasting India, Green & Yellow Roasted Heirloom Tomatoes from Tomato Bliss, and much more.

RECCHIUTI Recchiuti Confections’ Sharing Gift Box $110 , Possibly the best chocolatier in the country, this San Francisco company can do no wrong when it comes to all things chocolate. This giant box comes wrapped with a red satin ribbon and includes their Fleur de Del Caramels, the 9-piece Sepia Truffle Box, Cacao Nib & Fleur de Sel Mendiants, Dark Hot Chocolate, Dragée Sampler, and Dark Milk, Semisweet, and Bittersweet Bars. If you order yourself a box of the dark-chocolatedipped Key Lime Apples, no one else needs to know.

POINT REYES FARMSTEAD CHEESE CO. Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Co.’s Anniversary Collection $90, Words cannot adequately convey the scrumptiousness of Point Reyes’ cheese selection, so we’ll just leave it at, “OMG Yum!” The Anniversary Collection includes generous wedges of Toma (for a grilled cheese that will knock your socks off ), Aged Gouda, Bay Blue, and Original Blue, plus a whole 9-ounce wheel of their bay laurel-topped Quinta and a handy cheese knife.

BURLAP AND BARREL Burlap & Barrel’s Chef’s Choice Collection $54, I’ve been bowled over by the fabulous spices from Burlap & Barrel, a small spice company that’s going places. The spices are all equitably sourced, impeccably fresh, and always intriguing. The six-jar set Chef’s Choice Collection might include Black Urfa Chili from Turkey, Wild Mountain Cumin from Afghanistan, Ground Black Lime from Guatemala, or Buffalo Ginger from Vietnam. If you’re feeling extra generous, gift them with The Complete Collection ($472), an incredible boon for a new kitchen or a thrilling wedding present.

ll — at e

ESTELLE COLORED GLASS Estelle Colored Glass Hand-Blown Wine Glasses $160-175, Food 52 is offering a virtual ombré sunset of stemmed and stemless wine glasses from Estelle Colored Glass this holiday season. Choose smoke, blush, or rose-colored glasses, or opt for a mixed set with two of each color. 10% of the proceeds from your purchase will be donated to support farmers across the country through the All for Farmers Coalition by Tillamook. It’s the gift that keeps giving.

HEDLEY AND BENNETT Hedley and Bennett Aprons $45-120, Any cooking enthusiast — amateur or professional, child or adult — will fi nd something to love among the Hedley and Bennett collection. These aprons are built to last and designed by cooking professionals who understand what’s needed in the kitchen, from sturdy washable fabrics to deep pockets to hold your sharpies and instant-read thermometers. The Smock Apron in red chile salt chambray calls to me, and your Food Channel-obsessed child would simply love the Herb Garden Kid’s Apron. B E T T E R H O L I D AY 2 0 2 1 39

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Rowing can be ‘a superhighway to success.’ A growing number of nonprofits across the country are bringing the sport to marginalized communities and others not ordinarily associated with sweeping and sculling BY TED GREGORY



lex Roman’s mom picked him up from school one afternoon in seventh grade and had some news. “She said, ‘I just signed you up for rowing,’ and I was like, what?” Alex recalled. “I didn’t know anything about the sport. The first thing I thought was, that’s a sport with a lot of rich, white people.” He’d made a valid observation, which was part of the reason Alex’s mom had registered him for rowing at the Chicago Training Center, a nonprofit that uses the sport to create opportunities for diverse young residents of the city. Earlier that day, two CTC coaches had visited the elementary school where Alex’s mom taught. She mentioned Alex. Established in 2006 to reach at-risk kids, CTC is one of a growing number of organizations across the country — including a new initiative from rowing’s national governing body — seeking to open the benefits of the sport to people who traditionally wouldn’t be associated with it. People like Alex, who is of Puerto Rican descent and lives on Chicago’s southwest side. “There’s a lot of really good momentum now,” said Amanda Kraus, executive director of USRowing. In 2002, Kraus established Row New York, a nonprofit that uses rowing to strengthen academic achievement among underrepresented youth. “It really took — unfortunately — what happened in this country in the summer of 2020, with all the social unrest, for there to be a sort of collective awakening in the sport,” Kraus said.Now, she said, she’s hopeful. “I think the desire is there around so many

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Young, diverse rowers are the focus of North Channel Community Rowing's mission.

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WANT MORE? To see other sports working to break boundaries and support youth visit

programs — collegiate programs, junior programs and clubs,” Kraus added. “They just haven’t had the support in the past.” USRowing is taking action to change that. In October, it established a partnership with STEM to Stern, a nonprofit started in Milwaukee that emphasizes increased diversity in rowing and STEM education. STEM to Stern now is a program of USRowing, which will drive funding and help expand the program to clubs across the U.S. “We’re starting with our very youngest rowers — middle schoolers — to really change the pipeline so it starts to reflect the diversity of this country,” Kraus said shortly before announcing the partnership. “It’s a long-term plan and a long-term investment, not a splash and dash.”

From novice to coach


lex’s experience exemplifies how rowing becomes a powerful force in a young person’s life. By the end of his first practice with about 50 kids who, like him, were mystified by the sport when they arrived, Alex was hooked. “It was all new to me, and we were all learning together,” he recalled. “It was kind of like everybody building each other, sharing what they learned. That was really awesome.” He stayed with CTC, based in Chicago’s Bridgeport neighborhood, through middle and high school, competing in about 100 races and 40 regattas. It helped him learn important lessons of sport — discipline, teamwork, and camaraderie, not to mention how to fi x a boat — and enabled him to travel to places he never would have seen, meet people he never would have met. His rowing experience also contributed to his earning a college scholarship through POSSE, a national organization that’s diversifying the demoBringing “ERGs,” or rowing magraphic mix of students at top universities. chines, to schools Now a senior at University of Wisconsinis one effective strategy the Madison, Alex is a CTC coach. George Pocock “I had a ton of fun,” he said. “Now, I realize how Foundation uses much CTC has impacted my life, and I want to make to promote access to rowing. sure I can give that to someone else.”

‘Agent of change’


bout 14 miles north of CTC’s boathouse, longtime New Trier High School rowing coach Michael Wyman and his colleagues at the school, like millions of others, were compelled to act after the murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis Police officer in May 2020. They used their sport as a catalyst for change by creating North Channel Community Rowing, an all-volunteer group that, as its

website states, is “committed to supporting diversity and access to the sport of rowing through youth programs targeting under-represented students” in Evanston and Skokie. After robust funding support from the New Trier community and elsewhere, NCCR presented its first camp in July at Dammrich Rowing Center on the Evanston-Skokie border. A total of 36 middle schoolers participated in the week-long camps. Another 23 registered for fall training sessions. “We don’t want to be just a rowing organization,” Wyman said. “We want to be an agent of change for these kids.” Philanthropist Elizabeth “Liza” Yntema, an ardent advocate for girls’ and women’s rights, has long supported rowing as “a superhighway to success,” and works to expand the sport to diverse communities. She also supported NCCR, which she said has been extremely thoughtful in its approach. “What really impresses me about NCCR is their respect for the sport and those they seek to serve, demonstrated by their willingness to learn and work with the community on a really deep level,” she said. “That takes time.” Anecdotal evidence supports Yntema’s assessment of NCCR. “My experience in rowing was AWESOME!” a girl camper wrote in a letter to NCCR this summer. The teachers “are really nice and funny,” she said, adding that she hopes NCCR will grow to introduce more kids to the sport. “I want to become better in rowing,” she added, “because I want to become a counselor to help other kids and have fun.” Venerable, 111-year-old Lincoln Park Boat Club also is taking steps to open the sport to more diverse participants. LPBC for years has offered financial aid to rowers. In May, the nonprofit opened a boathouse on the North Branch of the Chicago River in the Lathrop housing development — once a public housing complex, now a mixed-income neighborhood. In August, LPBC created a middle school and high school rowing team free to all young residents of Lathrop, boat club President Trish Brubaker said. Participation has been low, but Brubaker is planning more robust marketing. “We defi nitely have this hurdle,” she said. “We need to convince them that the sport is for them. We’re having fun trying to solve the problem.”

Reliability, responsibility, trauma therapy


ther organizations considered models of rowing diversity include Community Rowing Boston, Baltimore Community Rowing, and Philadelphia City Rowing. Chicago has its own distinction in the movement. The city was the setting for the acclaimed 2020 book and documentary, “A Most Beautiful Thing,” which tells the true story of the nation’s first Black high school rowing team — a group from Chicago’s West Side, some of whom were in rival gangs.

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The book’s author, and rowing team member, Arshay Cooper, now works as the national inclusion director for the George Pocock Rowing Foundation, which last year established A Most Beautiful Thing Inclusion Fund, designed to bring rowing to a more diverse audience. “The biggest lesson I learned in rowing is that we need everyone,” Cooper said in the organization’s announcement of his appointment. “We need these clubs to open their doorsto everyone because talent is everywhere, but access and opportunity are not.” The Pocock Foundation, based in Seattle and considered a national model in rowing diversity, has another Chicago connection. Executive Director Jenn Gibbons co-founded Recovery on Water, a Chicagobased nonprofit rowing team for breast cancer patients and survivors, before taking the Pocock position. A former collegiate rower and high school coach, Gibbons became Pocock’s executive director in May 2020 and is convinced rowing can offer important lessons — reliability and responsibility, among others — and be therapeutic to a variety of people, particularly youth from historically disadvantaged communities who may have experienced significant trauma. Apart from the sport’s obvious exercise benefits, rowing’s repetitive nature provides rhythmic movement and relief from stress, Gibbons said. Performing that exercise on the water is another plus. “Their regular proximity to the water has been shown to have a profound calming effect,” she said. “Multiple studies have proven this environment can help relieve anxiety and depression and mitigate the effects of traumatic experience.”

In pursuit of recovery


ecovery on Water, the rowing nonprofit that fosters an active, supportive environment for breast cancer survivors, was established in 2007, when Sue Ann Glaser of Evanston was diagnosed with the disease and read about a Boston rowing team for cancer patients. The concept resonated with her. Through a mutual acquaintance, Glaser met Gibbons, then a rowing coach at St. Ignatius College Prep on Chicago’s Near West Side. The two established the organization in a few months, holding the first practice in spring 2008 and competing in its first race in July of that year. ROW’s original team totaled about a dozen women, said Tara Hoffmann, the organization’s programs manager. As of late September, ROW’s roster was 74 and has had as many as 100 women on its rolls. This summer, the organization recorded its largest ever novice class — 28 new rowers, Hoffman added. She said a strong correlation exists between exercise and cancer recovery, particularly from breast cancer. The low impact of rowing, its easy scalability, and accessibility to people of all ages make it an ideal fit for women pursuing recovery, Hoffmann said. “It just does wonders for all the negative things they’re dealing with,”

she said, adding that the emotional benefits to women rowers also are profound. “The team aspect of it is huge. It’s amazing what women will go through to get to rowing practice.”

Kids as advocates


hallenges exist, however. Water access for rowing is at a premium in the Chicago area, as is space in boathouses. Culture is another. Given that rowing is viewed as a white, elitist sport, building trust in marginalized communities is vital and can be difficult, said Kayla Cloud, who coordinates student services programs for the Pocock Foundation. “I think that relationship building as the fi rst step is a pretty crucial piece,” she added, “and something that’s always evolving.” Providing transportation and offering programs for free or low cost also are important, rowing advocates said. Organizations looking to use rowing as part of a program for academic success must consider tutoring, homework space, perhaps even free meals. But once some of those barriers are taken down, the sport’s universal appeal contributes to its sustainability, CTC Executive Director Staci Brown said. “I think the parents see the benefits of rowing,” she said. “They can see something that their kids cannot. And, once the kids get there and see how cool it is, they become their own best advocate of the sport.” Ted Gregory is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, formerly with the Chicago Tribune, author of four books and editor of a story collection. Now an independent writer, editor and researcher, Ted works primarily for foundations, nonprofits, related social impact organizations and universities. He is an active member of Backyard Caucus, which educates, informs, and advocates for diversity and inclusion.

UPDATE: Make It Better Media's Matching Grant Campaign with The George Pocock Rowing Foundation Last spring, Make It Better Media Group matched all donations to the George Pocock Rowing Foundation, up to $10,000, during a matching grant campaign. We are thrilled to share that as part of a matching grant campaign, they raised $162,000. This money will help the Pocock Foundation build and support high quality programs and facilities that promote access to rowing, excellence in rowing, and use rowing as a means to foster physical activity, health, leadership, and community engagement. If you are looking to help, please consider donating. With $1,000 they can purchase a rowing machine, a set of oars, a week’s worth of meals at a camp and transportation to the boathouse. Learn more at

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20 21

Top Philanthropists Making the Chicago-area a Better Place in Tumultuous Times BY RUTH FULLER Since March 2020, our world has been mired by hospitalizations, deaths, lockdowns, layoffs and economic hardships. The pandemic affected everyone, but Black and Brown communities suffered disproportionately. At the same time, the demand for social injustice, equity and inclusion took hold.

Dr. Willie Wilson


Wilson, founder of the Dr. Willie Wilson Foundation, is a philanthropist, entrepreneur, and occasional political candidate. At the start of the pandemic, he committed to providing masks to those who needed them, giving away an estimated 25 million masks in Illinois and another 10 million in California. He also donated $500,000 to start Ramo, a non-profit organization that helps churches figure out a way to become profitable on their own to create jobs and scholarship opportunities. “I do what I do because I believe in God and I believe in helping those in need,” Wilson said. “Giving gift cards, donating face masks to our first responders and others, donations to churches, helping seniors and the homeless … are some of the ways we have helped in the past.


Ellen Alberding Alberding is the president and a board member of the Joyce Foundation, which funds the development and advancement of policy reforms to address racial equity and economic mobility for the next generation. She is also one of the founders of the Partnership for Safe and Peaceful Communities, investing in strategies to reduce gun violence in Chicago. "Mass shootings are horrifying and rightly get a lot of media attention but account for just a fraction of gun homicides in the U.S.,” Alberding told the Chicago Tribune. “They are far outpaced by the

Our list of 2021’s Top Chicago-area Philanthropists aims to highlight those who put their philanthropy to work in those arenas. What follows are some of the superstars in our communities, those whose work is driving social change and helping those hurt by the pandemic.

daily scourge of urban gun violence, which is fueled by the easy availability of firearms and has a devastating impact on communities of color. Police shootings are another factor creating justified outrage. It’s time to bring together police, clergy, ex-offenders, elected leaders, young people, policy advocates and others for a broader conversation about solutions to reduce gun violence.”


Gillian Darlow Darlow is CEO of the Polk Bros. Foundation, which is dedicated to building and strengthening Chicago's families and communities, especially those most affected by poverty and inequity. At the start of the pandemic, Chicago’s foundation community came together very quickly, within days, to make rapid grants to support relief efforts to address basic emergency needs, Darlow said. “Polk Bros. Foundation directed more than $1 million toward the equitable provision of food, housing, health resources, direct fi nancial assistance, and eventually vaccines, in communities that had been disproportionately impacted both by the virus and by historic inequities,” she said. “We also helped convene our funding partners to make sure that information and communication was flowing well. “This is a catalyst moment, one that needs to be met with more resources,” she continued. “Our Equitable Recovery grants, supported last year and again this year through a significantly increased payout, are designed to help Chicago’s communities recover and rebuild from the pandemic in a way that ushers in long-overdue racial justice and equity..”

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J.B. and M.K. Pritzker


J.B. Pritzker is the 43rd governor of Illinois, co-founder of the Pritzker Group, and a member of the Pritzker family that owns the Hyatt hotel chain. His wife, M.K. Pritzker, is the president and director of the J.B. and M.K. Pritzker Family Foundation, as well as the founder of the Pritzker Children's Initiative. She has taken a leadership role in funding women's health in the Chicago area. “Early childhood development is an arena that's long been overlooked by philanthropy and government,” said J.B. Pritzker. “Even programs as large as Head Start cover a very small sliver of the population of at-risk kids. It's an arena attractive for a private philanthropist like me because I see it as a terrific investment.” “I've really come to realize over the course of this journey that it's only luck that separates any of us at this table from someone in need,” M.K. Pritzker told Today's Chicago Woman. “It's really only luck.”


John Palfrey Palfrey is president of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, one of the nation’s largest philanthropic organizations. He has extensive experience in social change spanning the education, nonprofit, and philanthropic sectors. “MacArthur has placed a few big bets to address some of the world’s most pressing challenges that will shape our future, from criminal justice reform to climate solutions, and from addressing nuclear challenges to reducing corruption in Nigeria,” Palfrey said. “We support efforts to strengthen American democracy by informing, engaging, and activating Americans through investments in journalism and media. And we invest in people, places, and partnerships to build a more equitable Chicago. “In the summer of 2020, we made an extraordinary decision to issue $125 million in social bonds,” he continued. “We used the proceeds to fund an Equitable Recovery initiative that addressed the twin pandemics of Covid-19 and racial injustice. This July, we announced grants to advance racial and ethnic justice, with a focus on combatting anti-Blackness, uplifting Indigenous peoples, and improving public health equity.” Kevin Cross


On June 1, Kevin Cross, who was formerly senior vice president & general manager of NBC Sports Chicago, became president and general manager for NBC 5 / WMAQ, Telemundo Chicago / WSNS and NBC Sports Chicago. When the pandemic hit, former Chicago Blackhawks great Eddie Olczyk called Cross and pitched the idea of a telethon. Cross was instrumental in making that happen.

NBC Sports Chicago held a special fundraising event: Be Chicago: “Together We Can.” Sean Garrett, the CEO of United Way Of Metro Chicago, and Cross joined Bob Sirott for the event. “Never before have we seen so many of our neighbors in financial need as we are experiencing during the unexpected coronavirus pandemic,” Sirott said. “You can make a difference in the lives of those most affected by this economic debacle by making a donation to the Chicago Community Covid-19 Response Fund.”

Kimbra and Mark Walter


Kimbra and Mark Walter invest much of their wealth in philanthropic causes through their family foundation, focused primarily on social justice, closing the opportunity gap for low-income youth and conservation. Mark is the co-founder of Guggenheim Partners, chairman of the Los Angeles Dodgers, an owner of the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks and the Philadelphia Freedoms of World Team Tennis. Kimbra, an attorney, shares Mark’s passion for conservation and education, serving on the boards of trustees of the Lincoln Park Zoo, OneGoal and the Goodman Theatre. “Kimbra and I are focused on social justice, on closing the 'opportunity gap' for low-income youth, and on saving endangered species and preserving wild places,” Mark said. “We are working hard to make our society more equitable and our planet more healthy by implementing innovative and sustainable models to tackle some of the hardest problems we face.” In the early part of the pandemic, the Kimbras purchased groceries and other basic goods for 5,000 families a week.

Liz and Eric Lefkofsky


Eric Lefkofsky is the founder and CEO of Tempus and a founding partner of the venture fund Lightbank. He is also the co-founder and chairman of Groupon. Liz Lefkofsky is a leading social philanthropist committed to championing initiatives that enhance the quality of human life. As the executive director of the Lefkofsky Family Foundation, Liz advances initiatives and research in the areas of education, women’s health, medical research and the arts. When it comes to equity and social justice, Liz and Eric said “we want to ensure we’re allocating resources and opportunities that enhance the quality of human life in the communities we serve. We view education as a basic human right and constantly search for ways to help and make excellent education accessible for all children. To that end, LFF has been working to bring equity to education with a deep focus on neighborhood schools to ensure all children receive a high-quality education. It is our ultimate goal to inspire and raise all teens up to have an equitable opportunity to explore and pursue their passions.” B E T T E R H O L I D AY 2 0 2 1 45

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Michael and Cari Sacks Michael Sacks is GCM Grosvenor’s Board chairman and CEO and serves on a number of nonprofit boards. A new $5 million gift from Michael and Cari includes scholarship support for former Chicago Public Schools students attending Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management and Pritzker School of Law. In total, 89 students have received a Sacks Family Scholarship, including 41 CPS graduates. “Now more than ever, student support is essential to making education more accessible to Chicago’s brightest minds,” Northwestern University President Morton Schapiro said. “Through their latest philanthropy, Michael and Cari are doubling down on their commitment to Northwestern students from Chicago Public Schools, helping them to become tomorrow’s leaders in business and the law.” FEELING INSPIRED? Check out our other Authoratative Lists, including previous Top Philanthropists, at


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Sean Garrett As president and chief executive officer of United Way of Metro Chicago, Garrett spearheaded the launch of the Chicago Community Covid-19 Response Fund, a partnership between Chicago Community Trust (CCT) and United Way of Metro Chicago. United Way and CCT, with the support of the city of Chicago, created the fund as a means for the philanthropic community, corporations and individuals across the region to support their neighbors in need. More than 6,000 donors raised more than $35 million, with 100 percent of the funds redirected back to the community. “United Way’s efforts to partner with neighborhoods through our Neighborhood Network initiative is transformational strategy to making our neighborhoods better places to live,” Garrett said. Ruth Fuller has worked as a journalist in the Chicago area for over 20 years, most of that time at the Chicago Tribune. She has also worked as a communications consultant for various Chicago-area non-profit organizations, including CARE, an international relief and development organization and CURE, an epilepsy research organization.

John Edwardson on Hard Work, Giving Back and ‘The Right Thing to Do’

n December 2020, John A. Edwardson, former CEO of United Airlines and CDW, delivered a commencement speech at his alma mater, Purdue University. Susan B. Noyes, Better’s founder, was so struck by Edwardson’s speech that she recently hosted a fireside chat with him to learn more about his journey as a businessman, father, and philanthropist. In this fireside, Edwardson chronicled his lifelong passion for giving back and shared his philanthropic initiatives, work that landed him a spot on Better’s list of 2021 Top Chicago-area Philanthropists. We are doing this because I saw the commencement speech that you gave to Purdue University. I think it was the best commencement speech I’ve seen. Could you talk about your family and your path through life? I grew up in Southern Illinois and as I look back, I needed to finish the degree that my dad never did. He dropped out of Purdue and always regretted that. I can remember one report card where I had one B+ and he sat me down and said, “Johnny, how much harder would you have had to have worked to make that B+ an A?” My mother was entirely different. She was always positive. So the juxtaposition of the two had a lot to do with my success. Can you summarize the lessons you learned from both? From my dad it was hard work. In terms of philanthropy, I learned more from my grandparents. When I was 8 or 9 years old, my mother’s


father had a small grocery store. One day, a woman came in and put two quarters on the counter, but didn’t buy any groceries. So I asked him, “Why is she giving you money if she didn’t take any groceries?” He said to me, “During the depression and the war she was one of the families that we gave credit to. They had no money, so we carried her receivables and even if she pays 50 cents a week for the rest of her life, she’ll never pay it off. But it’s important to her that she continues to come in and give me 50 cents a week.” That was one of the first lessons I learned about charity. Can you talk about how you’ve fostered those lessons in employees as you were growing in your career? For many years at United Airlines, we would volunteer at the Greater Chicago Food Depository. After Katrina hit New Orleans, we had 330 people rebuild homes and small businesses. People who did that were proud to work for our company and it just felt like the right thing to do. After you retired, you took on more philanthropic opportunities, which is why you’re on ‘The Most Powerful Philanthropists’ list

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for Better. We are asking people who earned that opportunity how they responded to COVID and to social justice issues. Can you talk about those things? During COVID, I called the CEO of Habitat for Humanity and I asked “What are you doing to get your share of money from the federal government?” He said that they didn’t really know how to make people aware. So I underwrote a campaign for them to spread the word to Habitat chapters across the nation about how we could help homeowners find that money.


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Any other advice that you would like to share? Do what you love. Most of the days that I went to work over the 48 years, it never seemed like work to me. I traveled hard and I put a lot of hours in, but I enjoyed what I did.

DON’T MISS: John’s inspiring 2020 Commencement Speech at Purdue University. Watch it at

Dr. Helene Gayle: Giving back has always been ‘part of who I am’


r. Helene Gayle has devoted the majority of her life to aiding the most vulnerable of populations. After more than two decades with the CDC, where she led initiatives to combat HIV/AIDS, Gayle has directed her recent philanthropic efforts to Chicago. In 2017, Gayle was named the president and CEO of Chicago Community Trust and has successfully shifted the organization’s focus to combating Chicago’s racial and ethnic wealth gap, making her an obvious choice for Better’s 2021 Top Chicago-area Philanthropists list. In a recent fireside chat, Susan B. Noyes spoke with Gayle about her journey to the Windy City, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the value of equity. What brought you to Chicago? I was quite intrigued when I was called about the job at Chicago Community Trust. I had spent a lot of my time focused globally, and I felt that my years of working around the world could bring something to bear in a local context. I would love for you to talk about the initiatives that you put into place once COVID hit. When I came about four years ago, we took a step back and said: Where could we make the biggest difference? So we said that we would make closing the wealth gap our highest priority. Two-thirds of the region in Chicago are Black and Brown and if we look at wealth and how it’s distributed, Black and Brown communities have not had the opportunity to realize their full potential. And then the COVID pandemic hit, where we again saw this disproportionate impact on communities of color. So we’ve mounted a major effort focused first on immediate relief for households that have been hit hard by COVID. So looking at recovery with a lens of equity, links to our overall mission of closing the ethnic and racial wealth gap. Can you tell us a bit about your family? I’m the middle of five children. I’m very pleased to have grown up in a family that believed it was important for us to get a great education


but to use that education in a way that could give back. So for me, being able to give back has always been a part of who I am. With the programs you’ve helped put into place, what is your hope for where we’ll be two years from now? Five years from now? What I hope is that Chicago can go down in history as one of the large American cities that took inequity seriously. That’s why we have committed ourselves to this issue of closing the wealth gap, because we feel that if we can make a difference in people’s economic opportunity — we all prosper. And your call of action to others....What can we do? All of us can play a role because all of us have a voice. We can vote. We can demonstrate our values through who we put in office. But becoming educated about the issues in our region, and figuring out where you sit, is how you can make a difference. Go on our website, We have a huge compendium of organizations that we work with. We advise our donors on the places where their dollars can make the biggest difference. It starts with where is your heart? We’re happy to work with people to unlock their values and commitments.

DON’T MISS: CARE’s Tribute Video to Helene when she was inducted into the J. Mack Robinson College of Business Hall of Fame at Georgia State University. Watch it at

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Meet the Winners

The Make It Better Foundation’s 2021 Philanthropy Awards presented by Wintrust recognize three nonprofit standouts from the Chicago area.


he Make It Better Foundation (MIBF) is thrilled to announce

recognized in previous years. The Foundation offers its sincerest

the winners of its annual Philanthropy Awards presented by

congratulations to the inspirational winners and to the dedicated

Wintrust. This year, the Make It Better Foundation’s Academy

employees and volunteers who keep these nonprofits going strong.

of Judges — a vibrant community of esteemed venture philanthropists,

Launched in 2012, the Philanthropy Awards recognize winners based

past winners, sponsors and thought leaders — reviewed and narrowed an

on five criteria: excellence, scalability, efficiency, leadership and effective-

impressive pool of 86 applicants — a 100% increase over 2019 applications.

ness. In response to the program’s ongoing popularity and long-term

The winners, in the categories of Human Services-Empowerment, Social Services, and Education, join more than 40 worthy nonprofits

benefit to winners, the Foundation also launched the inaguaral Bay Area Philanthropy Awards this year.

THE JUDGES Adam Alonso, BUILD Mark Angelini, Mercy Housing Lou Bank, Dolores Kohl Education Foundation Jeanne Bishop, Office of the Cook County (IL) Public Defender Greg Cameron, The Joffrey Ballet Mindy Fauntleroy, Make It Better Foundation Mary Fran, Allies for Community Business Yusef Garcia, Forefront Nancy Gianni, GiGi’s Playhouse Down Syndrome Achievement Centers Utica Gray, Fresh Start Caring For Kids Foundation Sharon Krone, Make It Better Foundation

Kristen McNamara, JP Morgan Maura Mitchell, Women’s Business Development Center Susan Noyes, Make It Better Foundation Jennifer Paul, Kellogg Graduate School of Management Cindy Rawlings, Evanston Community Bank & Trust Crystal Robinson. The Siragusa Family Foundation Kathy Roeser, The Roeser Group at Morgan Stanley David Scherer, One Million Degrees Katie Taylor, Northwestern University Settlement House Sandy Tsuchida, Make It Better Foundation Seth Weinberger, Innovations for Learning Barbara Wolf, Invest for Kids

WANT MORE? Learn more about past award winners and the work of our foundation at

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Human Services-Empowerment




Breakthrough Behavioral Health, founded in 1992, has a hyper-local focus within the East Garfield Park Community on Chicago’s West Side. It partners with people affected by poverty and helps them to build connections, develop skills and open doors of opportunity. One of the ways Breakthrough partners with residents is through behavioral health services. In its fiscal year 2020, Breakthrough served 344 individuals with behavioral health services, including 114 people in the Transitional Housing program and 230 in the Daytime Support Centers. In the Transitional Housing program, 100% of participants reported therapy helped them make better choices and 82% reported an increased awareness of the relationship between trauma, choices and behavior.

The Chicago Fire Foundation operates a first-of-its-kind program called P.L.A.Y.S., an acronym for Participate, Learn, Achieve, Youth, Soccer. The initiative serves Black and Brown at-risk youth and uses soccer to teach social and emotional learning. Students then apply these traits to academics for continued educational success, all within a safe and inclusive environment in which to play soccer. The Foundation, established DONATE NOW! in 1998, believes it’s crucial that students have access to resources $1,000 early in education that prepare Pays for bus transportation for one

Breakthrough provides a comprehensive and integrated approach to healthcare involving medical, mental health, behavioral and dental care. It provides access to healthcare for a vulnerable population, while improving health literacy, decreasing care fragmentation and addressing behavioral and social determinants of health. The organization operates two transitional housing shelters which house 30 men and 30 women who complete a program designed for a rapid-rehousing within 120 days. More information on Breakthrough is available at

DONATE NOW! $1,000

Provides two weeks of behavioral health needs assessments and care coordination at one of Breakthrough’s shelter facilities


Provides 10 weeks of behavioral health needs assessments and care coordination at both of Breakthrough’s shelter facilities and provides training for 7 staff to meet the heightened mental health needs of participants

Contact: Breakthrough, 402 N St Louis Ave., Chicago; 773.722.1144;

them for success. participating P.L.A.Y.S. Program P.L.A.Y.S. has seen more than school for an entire season 200,000 hours of soccer played by $10,000 more than 4,000 youth throughCovers training and development out underserved neighborhoods for all P.L.A.Y.S. Program coaches in Chicago. The program runs as well as the curriculum log book for 10 weeks, five out-of-school for all 1000 student participants for an entire season hours per week during the fall and spring seasons. Teachers Contact: Chicago Fire Foundation, from each of the 40 participating 1 N. Dearborn, Ste. 1300, schools are also program coaches. 872.710.0740, Curriculum includes a weekly lesson, focused on educational and life skills with corresponding soccer drills reinforcing weekly themes. For example, equality is paired with drills to highlight communication and teamwork, stressing that no matter what you look like, we are one team. To ensure the program’s continued success, online resources were added for teachers and students, such as videos from Chicago Fire players teaching sportsmanship, sharing life experiences and demonstrating soccer drills. The videos also include virtual teacher training and webinars that encourage community and family engagement, ensuring a holistic approach to the program model and extending education beyond the school day. Find more at B E T T E R H O L I D AY 2 0 2 1 49

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Social Services

THE NIGHT MINISTRY The Night Ministry’s programs, founded in 1976, fall under two categories: Youth Services and Health Outreach. The overreaching goals of these programs are to provide homeless and vulnerable young people and adults with the support, resources and confidence to overcome obstacles and improve circumstances. The programs are secular and known for supporting people without concern for race, ethnicity, religious or sexual orientation. During its fiscal year 2020, Night Ministry, which receives just 20% of its funding from the government, served 5,760 people. The Outreach and Health Ministry program made 34,695 outreach contacts, provided 2,669 health assessments and prevented 378 visits to the emergency room. Street Medicine distributed 8,746 sack lunches and 4,905 hygiene kits. More than 700 people living with chronic health conditions, including asthma and diabetes, received care from the Outreach and Health Ministry Team. Without this team, these individuals’ conditions would have gone untreated. More than 460 young people and 38 infants/ toddlers were sheltered across the organization’s five youth housing programs. Seventy-four percent of discharged residents from the Interim Housing Program transitioned to more safe and stable housing, 62% of discharged residents from the STEPS Transitional Living Program transitioned to long-term housing, 73% of guests staying at The Crib Overnight Emergency Shelter were connected to supportive services. Visit to learn more.

DONATE NOW! $1,000


• Provides more than 200 wound care kits to people living on the streets; or • Supports approximately 10 medical visits with nurse practitioners

• Provides individual assistance to young people within The Crib Emergency Overnight Shelter Program; or • Laundry services to The Crib for eight months

Contact: The Night Ministry, 1735 North Ashland Ave., Ste. 2000, Chicago; 773.506.6005;

BY THE NUMBERS BREAKTHROUGH Served 344 individuals with Behavioral Health services last year, including 114 individuals in the Transitional Housing program

100% of Transitional Housing program participants last year reported that therapy helped them make better choices

CHICAGO FIRE FOUNDATION Serves CPS students across the most atrisk areas in the city with nearly 60% of students living in the top 20 most violent neighborhoods in Chicago

More than

200,000 hours of soccer played by more than


youth throughout underserved neighborhoods in Chicago

THE NIGHT MINISTRY Last year, the Outreach and Health Ministry Program provided 2,669 health assessments, and prevented 378 ER visits

469 young people and 38 infants/toddlers were sheltered across The Night Ministry’s five youth housing programs last year

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On behalf of the Make It Better Foundation, Better invites you to be inspired by the 2021 Philanthropy Awards winners and their stories as they continue to transform Chicago communities. Please see our virtual celebration at: Learn more, including past winners, at: PRESENTED BY



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Audrey Niffenegger’s Evanston Dream Project:


“The Time Traveler’s Wife” and “Her Fearful udrey Niffenegger has a vision. Symmetry” among others, is no stranger to In it, booklovers, writers, and the Harley Clarke Mansion. A graduate of artists will come together to Evanston Township HIgh School and the create and support Artists Book House School of the Art Institute of Chicago, she got (ABH), a new nonprofit dedicated to the art her MFA from Northwestern and spent 15 of the book, from papermaking to printing years working at the Evanston Arts Center, word on page, from design and bookbindthe most-recent occupant of the mansion. ing to the experience of holding the finished She’s well aware of the many benefits and pitproduct. falls of the building and has a great reverence A r t books w ill share pride of place for its history and architecture. with graphic novels, poetry, memoirs, and The folks behind ABH have their work fiction, while artists, fans, educators, calcut out for them. “We need to raise $2 ligraphers, and printmakers pursue the million per year starting now to meet the process and craft of book making. People benchmarks in our lease with the City of will tell stories, and others will read them By Julie Chernoff Evanston,” says Niffenegger. “When we and be inspired to tell their own. have at least $4 million, we can begin to This dream is closer to reality than renovate the mansion. Our goal is to raise a ever before with the long-term lease of the total of $14 million, which includes operatHarley Clarke Mansion from the City of ing support.” Evanston; the 22,000 square-foot home on They are subleasing the mansion’s coach the banks of Lake Michigan is owned by the house and garden to Jens Jensen Gardens, a city. “The City is being super supportive of nonprofit that will take over the restoration our efforts with the ABH,” says Niffenegger. and ongoing maintenance of the grounds, Originally built by famed architect so that’s been taken off their plate. But the Richard Powers for the Clarke Family in struggle for funding, and to catch the atten1927, with grounds and gardens designed tion and imagination of the general public as by the visionary Jens Jensen, its sweeping well as deep-pocketed donors, is real. staircases and vistas, enormous third-floor During the pandemic, they created an ballroom, and glorious woodwork throughonline series of programs to keep ABH out are all decently intact, although there on the radar, including writer and artist is quite a bit of work to be done to bring Collaborations, Conversations with crethe building up to code and create the arts ators, and Open House Virtual Book Arts haven that Board President Niffenegger and Workshops, but this content was offered free the ABH Board are planning. Audrey Niffenegger of charge. They will be working closely with outside of the ABH has a 40-year lease from the city architect John Eifler (Eifler & Associates) Harley Clarke Mansion of Evanston, and they are hoping to make and landscape architect Nick Patera a personal tour of the building from the (Teska Associates, Inc.) to restore and auburn-haired author herself this fall, and I was struck by the scale renovate the mansion, which will eventually include classrooms for and the splendor of the mansion and seduced by Niffenegger’s vision writing seminars, studios for print and paper making, conference of a book-arts education center and haven in the middle of the North rooms, a bookstore, an art gallery, and a café with a terrace overlookShore. Truly, there could be no more inspiring location, surrounded ing the magnificent Lake Michigan shoreline. An elevator and two stair by beautiful old-growth trees, stirring architecture, and the everlifts will add much-needed accessibility to the building. They’re doing changing Great Lake just beyond the lead-pained glass. what they can to make the building greener, even considering geotherThe love of books is universal. “We have a certain unity of purpose mal solutions, although those may be cost-prohibitive. here,” says Niffenegger. “As an arts organization, we can help visualize Niffenegger, the celebrated artist and author of best-selling novels

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WANT MORE? Get inspired by creative ventures by authors and artists alike at


Artists Book House

Audrey’s Favorite Books OF THE YEAR

Harley Clarke’s fire pit.

Inside the mansion. Photos courtesy of Jeremy Pardoe.

“My favorite recent book is Anne Elizabeth Moore’s Gentrifier, which is her chronicle of living in Detroit in a problematic free house that was given to her by a sketchy nonprofit org (a sort of ‘room of one’s own’ to write in), and how she delighted in her neighbors and the community, but eventually had to leave. I enjoyed it because AEM is a great writer and a fresh thinker, and because I love Detroit despite all its difficulties.”



“Celia Paul’s memoir, Self-Portrait, was interesting to me because I look to other female artists to see how they combined their art with their lives. Paul is a painter, and was in a relationship with the painter Lucian Freud, with whom she had a child. Her work is full of family: her sisters, her mother. I wanted to know what Paul herself thought about her life; this is a beautiful, reflective memoir.”

it. The wonderful thing about books is you can connect them to almost any subject matter, to any occasion. We can expand your horizons.” In other words, as she so eloquently states on the ABH website, “Every book is a world. Books are vessels, ideas; they sit at the heart of civilization, where philosophies and visions converge. A book can be intimate and personal; it can change the fate of nations. Books speak to us and connect us across time and distance.” If this speaks to you — and I must wonder, how can it not? — please consider a donation to Artists Book House and help make this vision a reality. Julie Chernoff, Better’s dining editor since its inception in 2007, currently serves on the national board of MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger, an advocacy group addressing hunger issues in the U.S. and Israel for the nearly 46 million people — veterans, children, seniors, tribal nations, and more — who go to bed hungry every night.

“I enjoyed Lauren Groff’s new book Matrix—she’s very inventive, funny, and writes convincingly of 12th century nuns, visions, court intrigue, and romantic longing.” Want more book recommendations? See our top books of 2021, and more at

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Virtual. Live. Hybrid. Where to Start During the Restart of Events? i3 Events has been helping its clients run seamless corporate and association events for 20 years … even in 2020.

Always on Point with Details, Platforms & Technology

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The 2021

Guide to Better Giving Making it easy for you to help this holiday

There are thousands of worthy places to give your time or money to improve our communities, and it can be a bit overwhelming if you’re trying to sort out where to donate this holiday season. Consider one or more of these organizations, each of which has worked with Better this year or in the recent past, to make real, positive change.

Breakthrough Fresh Market Food Pantry

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Kickstart Your Holiday Giving BY SUSAN B. NOYES


h what joy holiday shopping for our six young children evoked! Imagining their Christmas morning delight, with every purchase, was almost as much fun as experiencing it. But, as they got older, I came to dread the annual chore. By then, our children didn’t need one more material object. They needed mental and physical decluttering and an attitude of gratitude, far more than an additional layer of new toys, electronics, video games, clothes, whatever. Our entire family needed to do more to help families with less too. Eventually, I learned to kickstart my holiday spirit by giving to others — through adopt-a-family programs and other nonprofit donations — before buying anything for ourselves. But, I didn’t find the true joy of the season again until a spur of the moment decision one Christmas Eve, by our preteen son James and me, to regift enough sweets and other presents to fill our car. We delivered them to a soup kitchen that our church supported. Seeing the delighted expressions on the recipients faces felt so good, James suggested our family do more the following year. Thus, was born what became an annual family giving tradition. We filled multiple vehicles with treats and new winter outerwear for the homeless and soup kitchen patrons that

next year and added additional shelters to our list in subsequent years. Thus, too, was born my desire as a publisher to make it as easy as possible for all families to support others in need. Eventually, my first magazine collaborated with The Volunteer Center and other organizations on a similar giving initiative called “Warming Hearts And Hands.” It grew to provide truckloads of supplies to numerous Chicago nonprofits. The pandemic made the logistics of the community outreach part of this program difficult. But we promise it will be reinstated next year. More importantly though, our publications created other opportunities to help you live and give with greater impact. Through our Make It Better Foundation, we carefully vet nonprofits, and we give Philanthropy Awards to those worthy of your support. We continue to recommend all past winners too. You can trust that all of these nonprofits will make wise use of every dollar, hour or item that you donate. We also provide comprehensive recommendations for where you can donate items you no longer use or volunteer your time and skills. Everything we publish is intended to help you and your family communicate and collaborate better — with each other and with organizations you can trust. Families who learn to work together philanthropically not only experience the joy of giving together, they become more astute financially. Philanthropy best practices and wealth education go hand in hand, as Ramsay Slugg, wealth strategies advisor of Bank Of America Private Bank, explained at our last Family Philanthropy Summit. Families who give together, usually stay close to each other through the generations. We wish you and your family a happy, healthy giving season and many happy returns of this precious time. For links to all the helpful content referenced here, visit Susan B. Noyes is Better’s founder and chief visionary officer. WANT MORE WAYS TO HELP? Visit to find out how to give back with maximum impact by utilizing our Give Time, Things, Support recommendations, underwriting a Better Giving Circle, hosting a Matching Grant and sharing your success through "Your Voices" and "Better Makers."

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Kara Walker Project, Self Portrait

Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center MISSION: The mission of Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center is expressed in its founding principle: Remember the Past, Transform the Future. The Museum is dedicated to preserving the legacy of the Holocaust by honoring the memories of those who were lost and by teaching universal lessons that combat hatred, prejudice, and indifference.

NOW ON VIEW: The Museum’s newest special exhibition, Rise Up: Stonewall and the LGBTQ+ Rights Movement, explores how the 1969 Stonewall Uprising ignited the modern LGBTQ+ rights movement in the United States – and the Uprising’s connection to Chicago. Don’t miss the Museum’s full range of exhibitions, including:

Animals PAWS CHICAGO provides animal sheltering and

is committed to bringing an end to the killing of homeless cats and dogs.

Arts & Education ACADEMY FOR GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP is a Chicago Public Charter School that uses an innovative and holistic approach to education to foster systematic change and inspire the way society educates future generations. BERNIE'S BOOK BANK distributes new and gently used children’s books to increase book ownership among under-served infants, toddler and school-age children throughout the Chicago area. BIG SHOULDERS FUND supports Chicago Catholic

schools with scholarships, academic enrichment programs, leadership development, academic programs and more.

BY THE HAND is an after-school program that

takes kids by the hand and walks with them

from kindergarten through college, loving and nurturing them — mind, body and soul. CHICAGO COUNCIL ON GLOBAL AFFAIRS provides insight, advances policy solutions, and fosters dialogue on critical global issues. CHICAGO DEBATES advances educational

achievement and life success of Chicago’s youth through the power of academic debate.


history to life through exhibits, artifacts and interactive programming.

• Karkomi Holocaust Exhibition, the Museum’s core exhibit, weaving history with Survivor narratives and showcasing over 500 artifacts from local Chicagoland Survivors • Abe & Ida Cooper Survivor Stories Experience where visitors meet and ask questions to 3D holograms of Survivors • Make A Difference! The Harvey L. Miller Family Youth Exhibition where young visitors (ages 7-12) build empathy, self-esteem, and positive decision-making skills • Shanghai: Safe Haven During the Holocaust shares little-known stories of Jewish refugees who escaped Nazism by fleeing to Shanghai, China

CHICAGO HOPES FOR KIDS provides direct aca-

demic support to children living in Chicago's homeless shelters to help them overcome the educational challenges of homelessness.

DANIEL MURPHY SCHOLARSHIP FUND gives high school scholarship assistance and educational support to Chicago students from under-resourced neighborhoods.

9603 Woods Drive, Skokie, IL 60077 (847) 967-4800 •

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Meals on Wheels Northeastern Illinois Executive Director Deborah Morganfield states, “Now that families are beginning to celebrate holidays together again, we are receiving calls from concerned sons and daughters who are noticing their parent isn’t eating well. We are here to help. We are here for any home bound older adult in any income bracket in need of better nutrition – we make sure everybody eats.” For more than 50 years Meals at Home (Meals on Wheels Northeastern Illinois), has distributed meals to older neighbors who might not otherwise eat well. Now, for the first time ever, a new kitchen is making it possible to serve exciting new entrees and offer program participants selections. Each morning the chefs begin the preparation of four different meals with fresh ingredients. These meals are delivered to the doors of older neighbors at lunchtime by a powerhouse network of volunteers. Lunch and dinner arrive with a friendly smile and a bit of conversation. Meal options include chicken marsala in a mushroom wine reduction, spinach and cheese stuffed portobello, four cheese spinach lasagna, beef roast with caramelized onion, savory meatloaf, and sweet teriyaki glazed chicken bowl on a bed of wild rice. Our high quality food, service and commitment has made Meals on Wheels the premier provider of nutrition for those in need.

Unlimited Scholars

DEER PATH ART LEAGUE The mission of the Deer Path Art League is to spark, nurture and enhance creativity and promote community interest in the visual arts.

INNOVATIONS FOR LEARNING believes learning to read is a basic civil right and strives to build reading skills globally through its programs.

GARFIELD PARK CONSERVATORY is one of the largest botanical conservatories in the nation and allows visitors to enjoy lush flora and tropical temperatures year round.


HORIZONS FOR YOUTH offers educational help and mentorship opportunities for more than 250 children at more than 50 Chicago-area elementary and high schools. ILLINOIS HOLOCAUST MUSEUM & EDUCATION CENTER preserves the legacy of the Holocaust

by honoring the memories of those who were lost and by teaching universal lessons that combat hatred, prejudice and indifference.

INGENUITY works to ensure every student in

every grade in every school has access to the arts as part of a well-rounded education.

1723 Simpson Street, Evanston, IL 60201 (847) 332-2678 •

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strengthens communities by empowering underfunded school districts with equitable programs, resources, and relationships that enrich schools, engage families, and expand opportunities for children to learn, grow, and thrive. NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY SETTLEMENT HOUSE offers children a chance to escape

Chicago’s street violence and learn in a safe place, allowing them to grow and simply be a kid. ONE MILLION DEGREES provides support to low-

income, highly motivated community college

Want to donate your time or things? See our monthly Give Time, Things, Support resources at


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high potential Black high school students with mentors, resources and foundational skills required for success as they advance into, through and beyond college.

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students to help them succeed in school, work and life. THE PEOPLE'S MUSIC SCHOOL delivers access

to quality, tuition-free music education, allowing students to grow musically, socially, emotionally and intellectually.

Daniel Murphy Scholarship Fund

PHALEN LEADERSHIP ACADEMIES is dedicated to student achievement and helping K-12 public and charter schools across the country see results. THE POSSE FOUNDATION believes a small diverse group of talented students — a posse — can serve as a catalyst for individual and community development, and the foundation aims to train these leaders of tomorrow. SIT STAY READ advances children’s literacy

skills using an engaging curriculum, certified dogs, and dedicated volunteers.

SNOW CITY ARTS helps bring art of all kinds to children in hospitals through one-on-one wsessions with artists. SPARK creates opportunities for students in

the middle grades, opportunities that forge the gap between what they are learning in the classroom and what they dream to accomplish later in life.

Disaster Relief AMERICAN RED CROSS OF ILLINOIS helps people

whose lives have been upended by wildfires, storms, floods, and countless other crises.

Domestic Violence WINGS PROGRAM INC. provides housing, inte-

grated services, education and advocacy to end domestic violence.


Midwest’s leading environmental legal advocacy organization, driving transformational policy changes with national impact.

Chris Klingenstein, DMSF Board Member and Golf Classic Committee Chair and Hugo A. Murphy Scholar Caddie Class of 2022, at DMSF Golf Classic. Be part of Chicagoland’s biggest and best golf outing on Monday, June 6, 2022! The 33rd Annual Daniel Murphy Scholarship Fund (DMSF) Golf Classic will host 650+ golfers and supporters of educational access and opportunity. DMSF provides high school scholarship assistance and programmatic support to Chicago students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds. The 2021 event raised over $2 million through generous donors and sponsors to benefit Murphy Scholars. The event features golf at prestigious courses, exclusive auction packages and a great time! Auction packages include access to private golf clubs across the country, fine wine, tickets to your favorite sporting events and more. Past host clubs include Beverly, Conway Farms, Exmoor, Knollwood, Lake Shore, Merit Club, Northmoor, Oak Park, Onwentsia, Shoreacres, and Skokie.

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Your participation in the 33rd Annual DMSF Golf Classic will ensure impressive outcomes for Murphy Scholars including: • High School Graduation: 100% • College Acceptance: 100% for those who applied • College Affordability: average of $50,000, per Scholar, awarded in grants and scholarships • College Matriculation: 99% of those accepted enroll in four-year colleges/universities • College Persistence: 87% graduate within six years of enrollment • Long-term Success: Murphy Alumni return to DMSF as volunteers and donors Learn more at or contact us at (312) 455-7800.

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Turning Point Behavioral Health Care Center The mission of Turning Point Behavioral Health Care Center is to provide solid support when you need it most. For over 50 years, Turning Point has served as a trusted and award-winning provider of expert, affordable, and compassionate mental health care for children, adults, and families. Providing a wide range of services, Turning Point annually serves approximately 1,300 individuals from throughout the Chicago metropolitan area. Turning Point serves adults, families, and children beginning at age five, approximately 90% of whom are low-income.

Food A JUST HARVEST fights poverty and hunger in Rogers Park and greater Chicago by providing nutritious meals daily, while cultivating community and economic development. MEALS ON WHEELS NORTHEASTERN IL fosters


provides outpatient behavioral addiction treatment services, at no cost, to those who cannot pay while assisting them with housing and employment.

health and independence by delivering nutritious meals to homebound older adults and others unable to care for their nutritional needs.

ACCION OPPORTUNITY FUND is a financial support system that provides small businesses owners in the U.S. with access to capital, networks and coaching.

TREES THAT FEED plants fruit trees to feed

ALZHEIMER'S ASSOCIATION ILLINOIS CHAPTER creates supportive services for families, increases funding for dementia research, and influences

people, create jobs, educate, and benefit the environment.

For a list of local food pantries to donate or volunteer at, visit

Programs include outpatient therapy, therapeutic groups, case management, a transitional living program, and free crisis services including The Living Room at Turning Point, a walk-in program for adults in psychiatric crisis. Despite the challenges of COVID-19, Turning Point has remained missionfocused, maintaining life-saving programming and expanding its renowned crisis services to meet the growing needs of the community. Known for creativity and innovation and highly regarded as a leader in the field and in its community, Turning Point Behavioral Health Care Center has received both local and national awards and highest ratings from CARF, the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities. Solid Support. When you need it most.

8324 Skokie Boulevard, Skokie, IL 60077 (847) 933-0051 •

Chicago Run uses running as a catalyst for youth development and healing

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public policy changes across the state.

Lakeview Pantry

&RISE empowers women to be the ultimate versions of themselves no matter what adversities they've faced. BEYOND SPORTS FOUNDATION assists studentathletes from under-resourced communities in the Chicago area to reach their academic and professional goals by giving them the skills to excel in college and succeed in life beyond sports. CHICAGO RUN promotes the health and wellness

of Chicago children through innovative, engaging, and sustainable youth running programs.

THE CHICAGO LIGHTHOUSE serves the blind,

visually impaired, disabled and veteran

While the holiday season is typically a time of great cheer and festivity, many experience late fall and early winter as a time of burdensome bills and expenses. As families begin to consider the increased cost of heating their homes and the need to replace worn out winter clothes, planning for a holiday celebration can feel almost unattainable. Every year during the holiday season, 1 in 7 Chicagoans are unsure where their next meal will come from. Lakeview Pantry believes that every family deserves to come together around a warm meal. Every tradition, every religion, every holiday deserves to be celebrated.

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That’s why every year, Lakeview Pantry adds a full turkey (or choice of festive protein) into every family’s grocery box. And we can’t do it without you! This holiday season, help us give our neighbors something to be thankful for by donating to our special Turkey Fund. Your gift will help put thousands of turkeys on tables for families throughout Chicago through the end of the year!

3945 N. Sheridan Road, Chicago, IL 60613 (773) 525-1777

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Urban Autism Solutions (UAS) Mission: Urban Autism Solutions is dedicated to changing outcomes for young adults with autism and related challenges through an integrated community life that advances social and vocational opportunities. What we do: Since its establishment in 2012, UAS has served more than 1,000 young adults with innovative, personcentered programs that focus on the acquisition of life skills, community integration, social interaction and vocational training.

The UAS West Side Transition Academy: Provides supplemental services to those offered at West Side Chicago public schools, including speech-language therapy, socialemotional skills building, internships, vocational training and, for work-ready students, job placement and support. Network 1212: Social programs offered to young adults (18-35 years) who do not require supports. Popular events include monthly restaurant Meet-Ups, Urban Hikes, current events discussions and more. Residential: Please contact us to learn more about our unique residential program for young adults with autism and related challenges.

Meals on Wheels

communities with rehabilitation services, education, employment opportunities and more. CYCLING WITHOUT AGE NORTH SHORE CHICAGO

helps seniors feel a part of society, reduces isolation and integrates individuals with limited mobility back into the broader communities in which they reside by offering rides on a Trishaw with experienced "pilots." GEORGE POCOCK ROWING FOUNDATION builds

and supports high quality programs and facilities that promote access to rowing, excellence in rowing, and use rowing as a means to foster physical activity, health, leadership, and community engagement.

GIRLS IN THE GAME inspires girls to find their

voice, discover her strength and lead with confidence through fun and active sports, health and leadership programming.


1212 W. Flournoy Street, Chicago, IL 60607 @urbanautismsolutions

self-determining power of Black youth and strengthens their ties to community through real world experience in entrepreneurship.


supports youth, adults and military veterans who have a physical or visual disability by offering inclusive recreation, fitness and competitive sports activities. JOURNEY CARE is the largest provider of supportive, palliative, hospice care in Illinois, serving nearly 3,000 adult and pediatric patients each day. SELAH FREEDOM aims to end sex trafficking and bring freedom to the exploited through Advocacy & Awareness, Prevention, Outreach, and Residential pograms. SKIN OF STEEL aims to provoke revolutionary

personal, behavioral and institutional change in dealing with melanoma.

SOLIDARITY BRIDGE builds a healthier future

for the people of Bolivia and Paraguay through domestic and international partnerships, training and equipping medical communities, empowering them to provide complex surgery and other health care for patients who lack access to treatment.


to help it provide the best health care for the

Want to maximize your donations? Join our Matching Grant Campaigns at

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Growing Solutions Farm: Our nationallyrecognized vocational training site. Transition-aged young adults from West Side Chicago public high schools learn about urban agriculture and develop transferrable job skills.

individuals and diverse communities Rush serves. YWCA EVANSTON/NORTH SHORE is dedicated to

eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice and dignity for all.

Housing & Anti-Poverty A SAFE HAVEN FOUNDATION provides food, shel-


mission of charity to anyone in need by providing compassionate, competent and professional services that strengthen and support individuals, families and communities based on the value and dignity of human life.


ter, treatment, medical care, education, job training and job placement to people in crisis and helps them transition from homelessness to self-sufficiency.

Chicago’s low-income elderly, offering support services and opportunities for intergenerational living.


vibrant, and health communities through its resident-centric service, stategic approach to housing development, and the support of partners and donors.

with those affected by poverty to build connections, develop skills, and open doors of opportunity.


YWCA Evanston/ North Shore Our Mission YWCA Evanston/North Shore is a social justice organization dedicated to eliminating racism and empowering women.

What We Do We work at the individual, community, and system levels by combining direct service to women and children with training, education, and advocacy in four interconnected areas: • Domestic Violence Services: Crisis intervention, shelter, counseling, and legal advocacy help survivors and their children get safe, heal from trauma, and take control of their own futures. • Economic Advancement: Money management, in-demand job training, and employment and housing supports build economic security and housing stability. • Equity Institute: Training and education, community engagement programs, awareness-building events, and advocacy promote racial and gender equity. • Flying Fish Aquatics: Swim lessons and swim team opportunities ensure all children have equal access to water safety instruction so they will be safe in and around the water. Our Women’s Resale Shops 100% of profits from our two shops for women support our mission: • YWCA Shop for Good, a resale boutique at 1107 Central Ave. in Wilmette • YWCA Crowded Closet, a consignment shop at 820 Dempster St. in Evanston


Learn more at


1215 Church Street, Evanston, IL 60201 (847) 864-8445 •

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CASA LAKE COUNTY exists to promote and

protect the best interest of children who have been abused or neglected, by training volunteers to advocate for them in courts, in schools and in our community to help them find safe, permanent and loving homes.


innovative product and service models that give individuals with disabilities and families the skills and opportunities to realize full lives.

Little City Foundation

CHICAGO FIRE FOUNDATION, the charitable arm of the Chicago Fire Major League Soccer team, makes contributions to enhance the lives of disadvantaged youth throughout the Chicago area. CHILDREN'S HOME & AID is a leading child and

PADS LAKE COUNTY is a community-based organization that provides trauma-informed support, resources, and shelter to individuals and families experiencing a housing crisis. THE NIGHT MINISTRY provides housing, health care, outreach, spiritual care and social services to adults and youth who struggle with homelessness, poverty and loneliness.

BUILD is a gang intervention, violence preven-

tion, and youth development organization on Chicago’s West Side.

C24/7 FATHER'S ARMS MINISTRIES is dedicated,

through the power of Jesus Christ, to improving the lives of children and young adults in the North of Howard neighborhood by providing the necessary tools, security and environment for them to thrive economically, socially and spiritually.

family service agency in Illinois, helping children recover their health, hope and faith in the people around them.

THE COVE SCHOOL teaches children with learn-

ing disabilities and believes every child has the ability, given the resources, to learn, grow and flourish.

CRADLES TO CRAYONS provides disadvantaged children with items they need, free of charge, by collecting items through community drives

SARAH'S CIRCLE serves women who are homeless or in need of a safe space.


empowers early childcare providers in Austin to create engaging early learning environments and develop sustainable businesses. BOYS & GIRLS CLUB OF CHICAGO aims to enable all

young people to reach their full potential, providing members with emotional, educational, physical and cultural resources that allow them to enjoy their childhood and thrive in adulthood. Supercharge your philanthropy efforts through a Better Giving Circle. Find more at

PAWS Chicago Volunteer

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and corporate donations, then packaging and delivering those items to the kids. CRUSHERS CLUB is an alternative to gangs, giving young people the support and skills to restore their lives and improve their neighborhoods.

Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago

CURT'S CAFE provides jobs, training and men-

torship for at-risk youths, giving them a path to a successful future.

ERIKA'S LIGHTHOUSE is dedicated to education and raising awareness about adolescent depression, encouraging good mental health and breaking down the stigma surrounding mental health issues. We promote inclusive school cultures through mental health education by providing schools with free programs to impact the whole school community. FRESH START CARING FOR KIDS FOUNDATION

transforms the lives of disadvantaged children with physical deformities caused by birth defects, accidents, abuse or disease through the gift of reconstructive surgery and related medical care. GIGI'S PLAYHOUSE builds awareness, acceptance,

education and celebration of individuals with Down syndrome.


inner-city youth through life-on-life relationships.


provides community-based legal, social work, and restorative services for youth and families, advancing a vision of a more just and racially equitable society. KESHET brings classroom experiences, camps,

sports, social and vocational activities, and residential opportunities to 600 people with disabilities and special needs each year.

LITERATURE FOR ALL OF US uses books and writing to facilitate circles of connection, healing, and growth in the face of social inequity.

For families in the Chicago region, Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago is a critical resource for outstanding pediatric care. Whether a patient comes to us for an annual check-up, a medical emergency or ongoing treatment for severe illness, we are a non-profit hospital that responds, regardless of a family’s ability to pay. Your support for our community’s babies, children and teenagers ensures that we can provide expert care to all young people who need our help. This year, consider giving a meaningful gift that can change the future for a child. Financial gifts provide critical support, allowing us to direct funds when and where they are needed the

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most. A new piece of equipment that can advance patient care, a discovery in medical research that should be fasttracked, or the ability to expand our programs and facilities to serve more children—your generosity makes these and other initiatives possible. From making a financial gift to purchasing items from our virtual wish list, there are many ways you can support our patients and families this year. Learn more at:

225 E. Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611 (312) 227-4000 •

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Brushwood Center at Ryerson Woods

LITTLE CITY FOUNDATION serves children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities by providing the best options and opportunities to live safely, learn continuously, explore creatively and work productively throughout their lifetime. MOTHER'S TRUST FOUNDATION provides immediate assistance during times of crisis to low-income children in Lake County. NEW MOMS strengthens families by partnering with young moms as they progress toward housing and economic stability, and family well-being. THE NORA PROJECT promotes disability inclusion by empowering educators and engaging students and communities.

Brushwood Center at Ryerson Woods harnesses the power of art and nature to heal, inspire, and empower. Brushwood Center collaborates with more than 50 partners and 250 artists to support the wellbeing of 8,000 youth, families, Veterans, and seniors in Lake County and the Chicago region: • It’s A. W.I.N. (Art and Wellness in Nature) fosters equitable access to nature and the arts for youth and families in Waukegan, North Chicago, Highwood, and Round Lake through long-term community partnerships and co-designed programs focused on social, emotional, and physical health. • At Ease: Art and Nature for Veterans empowers Military Veterans’ wellbeing through nature-inspired photography, music, and painting workshops, in partnership with the Captain James A. Lovell Federal Health Care Center and local Veteran groups. These programs are available to all Veterans at no charge.

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• Brushwood Center’s Public Art Programs feature world class art exhibitions, concerts, lectures and performances that lift up artist and community voices, inspiring hope and action for our future.

Join Us! Make a donation, learn about upcoming events, or become a volunteer at UPCOMING EVENTS Nature-Inspired Holiday Art Market: December 1-3 (online) and December 4-5 (in-person at Brushwood Center) Veterans Art Exhibition, Nature Platoon: Open through December 22

UNICEF delivers the essentials that give children an equitable chance in life: health care and immunizations, safe water and sanitation, nutrition, education, emergency relief and more. REFUGEE ONE welcomes hundreds of refugees through the U.S. State Department’s Refugee Admissions Program, helping them rebuild their lives after fleeing violence, persecution and war. URBAN AUTISM SOLUTIONS is dedicated to changing outcomes for young adults with autism through an integrated community life that advances social and vocational opportunities. WILLOW HOUSE is dedicated to providing free

supportive services to youth, young adults, parents and school communities grieving the death of a parent, sibling or child.


21850 Riverwoods Road Riverwoods, IL 60015 (224) 633-2424

services and leadership to meet the emerging needs of young people and their families in Evanston. youth-organizations-umbrella Want to volunteer your time? See where you are needed most at

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American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP)

Mission: The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is dedicated to saving lives and bringing hope to those affected by suicide. What We Do: AFSP is a voluntary health organization that gives those affected by suicide a nationwide community to take action against this leading cause of death. More than 47,000 Americans died by suicide in 2019 making it the 10th leading cause of death and the 3rd leading cause of death for ages 10-34 in Illinois. AFSP is on a mission to create a culture that’s smart about mental health by engaging in the following core strategies:

• Advocating for public policies in mental health and suicide prevention • Supporting survivors of suicide loss and those with lived experience As a part of AFSP’s nationwide network of chapters, the Illinois Chapter brings together people from all backgrounds who want to prevent suicide in their communities. Families and friends who have lost someone to suicide, vulnerable individuals, mental health professionals, educators, students, community/ business leaders, and others that energize our chapter.

How to Get Involved: There are many ways to help support suicide prevention: • Volunteer with the local chapter • Become an advocate • Support an Out of the Darkness Community or Campus Walk • Bring suicide prevention education to your community • And much more! To learn more, visit

• Funding scientific research • Educating the public about mental health and suicide prevention

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47 W. Division Street, #403, Chicago, IL 60610 (312) 890-2377 •

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NAVIGATING THE ART & SCIENCE OF REAL ESTATE Paige Dooley, Licensed Real Estate Broker, Compass

AFTER AN EARLY CAREER in consumer advertising Paige Dooley was on a quest to study the ultimate consumer purchase...a home. With over 30 years in real estate and the market leader in Winnetka for over a decade, Paige continues to work with unparalleled enthusiasm and zeal to serve her clients with expertise and a splash of fun.

tell a story of value make her a consistently effective advocate for her clients. Paige is passionate about her home town’s schools and history and is intimately familiar with each of the North Shore communities. Ask any of Paige’s loyal clients throughout town about her work ethic and spirit!

Paige’s hallmark lies in what she calls “navigating the art and science of real estate” by combining the perfect blend of the instinctive, creative skill set of an artist and the hard core analytics of the raw data. This nuanced mix of understanding the story of a home, it’s design, location and property while also synthesizing the numbers to

851 Spruce St, Winnetka, IL 847.609.0963 I

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This page: The cabin’s great room looks out over the Uinta Mountains, a stunning view that inspired the nature theme for the home’s decor. Opposite: In the largest guest room, reclaimed wood from Wyoming snow fences creates an accent wall for the bed and a backdrop for textural artwork from Global Views.

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ith their three children now young adults, a couple on Chicago’s North Shore realized that having a vacation home would make family get-togethers easier and therefore more frequent. “We all love to ski and hike, so being near Park City is perfect for us,” the wife says. “While we’ll probably always keep a home in Chicago, we plan to use the cabin year-round.” Calling it a “cabin” might be understatement. The home comprises 4 bedrooms and 3,000 square feet. It’s a customizable home in a resort development called Victory Ranch. To help with the home’s interior, the couple chose Austin-based designer Donna Figg, whose eponymous company had designed homes at Victory Ranch for friends of the couple. “I like that Donna can do rustic, contemporary and mountain looks,” the wife says. “I wanted the house to look contemporary and not like a ski lodge. Also, I wanted a real connection to nature.” Figg established her business in 2012, working in Dallas for a decade, then in Vail, before settling in Austin. “We’re used to working with out-of-town clients,” she says. “So even before Covid-19, we would work

The family plans to use the cabin year-round, so Donna Figg’s design team used fabrics that are not only luxurious but also durable: velvet, leather and wool pictured here in the great room.

The family room seating area includes an occasional chair by Lee Industries and a drink table by Bernhardt.

with clients remotely, then fly in for the install.” The contacts Figg made while working on resort homes in Colorado led to her becoming a preferred designer at Victory Ranch. The wife sent Figg’s team photos of nature that spoke to her, while the husband—who is an executive at Visual Comfort and Co., which makes high-end light fixtures— gave the team carte blanche to showcase his company’s stunning lights. “Our business is built on collaboration with our clients,” Figg notes. “In this case, the homeowners had a vision, they just didn’t know how to pull it all together.” Because the owners wanted a nature theme, Figg and designer Bethany Frizzell used the seasons to define the color palette for each of the four bedrooms. They also embraced the wildness of the West when they recommended “The Bear,” a custom-sized mural

WANT MORE? Discover more unique and beautiful homes on the North Shore and beyond at

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wallpaper of a standing bear. “The bear kicks off the house with a cool and unique feeling,” Frizzell says. “He has this ‘you lookin’ at me?’ expression that’s just so fun.” Nature also comes into play with reclaimed wood from Wyoming snow fences on the great room’s fireplace surround, the ceiling of the primary bedroom and as an accent wall in a guest bedroom. Another mural, a collage of mountains, adorns a wall in the home’s smallest bedroom. In the great room, with its cathedral ceilings, Figg’s team chose two 40-inch ring chandeliers designed by Ralph Lauren for Visual Comfort. “The space really spans from the front door to the end of the great room,” Figg says. “We love the continuity

The built-in bunks thoughtfully accommodate overnight guests with reading lights, matching throws by Pendleton and decorative pillows from Jaipur.

The bear wallcovering by Four Hands Art Studio sets the tone for the house’s outdoor theme.

with the two matching chandeliers.” There were a few pandemic-related challenges to get the project over the finish line. The largest hurdle was delayed furniture delivery. “Once we knew the indoor furniture wasn’t going to arrive on time, we had to call the homeowners with a plan B,” Figg explains. They decided to use the home’s outdoor furniture as the temporary indoor furniture. “The wife just laughed when we told her. She said, ‘We’re campers, we’ll be fine.’ ” In the end, the real indoor furniture arrived about a month after the couple had moved in. “It only took us two days to move the new furniture in and the outdoor furniture out,” Frizzell says. “The time consuming stuff was already done.” The homeowners knew Figg had nailed the design when their adult children visited for the first time. “They immediately said, ‘It feels like you and Dad,’ ” the wife says. “Donna and Bethany even got family photos from us and put them in frames. It’s all so personal.” Laura Hine is a design and style writer based in Chicago. She’s a former editor-in-chief of Better, as well as the Modern Luxury publications Interiors Chicago and NS.

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Choosing a real estate agent takes a lot more consideration than picking at random based on search engine results. After all, buying or selling a home is a deeply personal experience. To ensure the best results, your agent-selection process should entail thorough research. This month, we spotlight Paige Dooley, Compass and Meg + Katie Group, Compass — read on to discover what makes these stand-out real estate agents tick.



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MEG MCGUINNESS + KATIE HAUSER joined forces at Compass over 3 years ago to combine their talents to form a powerful real estate team on Chicago’s North Shore. Together, they have closed hundreds of transactions in Chicago and the north suburbs. Perhaps this dynamic duo’s talents are summed up best by one of their clients: “From listing to closing, working with Meg and Katie was the best experience my husband and I have ever had selling a house! Their knowledge of the North Shore and its market, attention to detail, 24/7 accessibility, and understanding of and empathy for the stress of selling a house and everything that process entails are truly exceptional. Both Meg and Katie possess strong interpersonal and organizational skills, and they

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kept us well informed from start to finish. What a great partnership to have working on our behalf!” Meg + Katie Group remains in the top 5% of Realtors on the North Shore, and have also been recognized for their volunteer work with Family Promise, teaching Keys to Good Tenancy, a responsive curriculum that provides families facing homelessness with the knowledge and skills to be good tenants. 851 Spruce St, Winnetka, IL 60093 847.863.5599 Meg I 847.212.5214 Katie

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Destinations / GO

Everything you need to know for

Ski Season 2022

Skiers are looking for a little extra privacy, exploring the backcountry and staying longer this year so plan ahead to make your ski vacation as fun and low-stress as can be. BY AMBER GIBSON

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The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe

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ast year, ski resorts across the United States thoughtfully and successfully opened during the pandemic, requiring masks on mountains and social distancing indoors. Although the après-ski scene was limited, skiers and snowboarders relished the opportunity to shred on the mountains and

Montage Big Sky

get some much needed outdoor activity. Most Americans are now fully vaccinated against Covid-19, but with concerns about new variants and breakthrough cases, we're not quite out of the woods yet. Travelers need to be prepared and understand the health and safety protocols that are in place to protect themselves and the mountain communities

they're visiting. Individual ski areas will release additional Covid-19 information as the season approaches and progresses. Across the country, some new trends and creative solutions that emerged last winter will continue to be popular to ensure that ski vacations remain safe and fun.

Hilton Head

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PLAN AHEAD Planning will be essential this winter. Some ski resorts may still require advance reservations, while others like Breckenridge, Colorado, will have daily lift tickets for sale and Park City Mountain in Utah will be providing more flexibility for last-minute visits with discounted day passes. Check ski area websites for the most up-to-date information before your trip. “We encourage everyone to do their research ahead of time,” says Chris Linsmayer, public affairs director at Colorado Ski Country USA, representing 22 different ski areas. “Visit ski area websites, social media and other channels to understand current ticket availability and any other Covid-19 specific policies or restrictions at ski areas including guest behavior expectations during their visit.” Advanced reservations may be required rather than recommended for activities, including dining and hotel amenities. For example, coveted heated outdoor patio seating at RIME in the St. Regis Deer Valley in Utah will need to be reserved well in advance, especially during their popular Sunday brunch with live music. Consider skipping the rental shop and taking advantage of rental delivery. Black Tie Ski Rentals delivers to 46 resorts across the country and can arrange in-room Umbrella Bar, Canyons Village, Park City

The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe

fittings. They offer the latest technology, like Bluetooth-enabled heated boots, plus higher performance options that are appreciated by more accomplished skiers. LONGER STAYS Rather than taking several shorter ski vacations to different destinations this year, longer stays will be more common, especially as many companies continue to allow employees to work remotely. In Aspen, The Little Nell is offering up to 25% discounts for extended stays and stays longer than 30 days have sales tax waived as well. The Nell's six luxury suites and 26 residences all come with a desk, personal computer, monitor and printer and the concierge desk accommodates printing requests. Many luxurious ski-in ski-out hotels also offer residences, which are a great option for extended stays. For example, The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe has 12 two and

three-bedroom residences in the rental pool that are ideal for families and St. Regis Deer Valley has 67 hotel condominiums ranging from one to four bedrooms, with native stone fireplaces, chestnut floors and 9-foot ceilings. There are also 34 private residences with heated bathroom floors, multiple fireplaces and spectacular kitchens outfitted with Sub-Zero and Wolf appliances plus an undercounter wine refrigerator. At a more economical price point, Hyatt Centric Park City has one- to four-bedroom residences available to rent as well, with contactless check-in and curated meditations from Headspace on the World of Hyatt app. BACKCOUNTRY BOOM While many elements of resort skiing remain up in the air, serious skiers and snowboarders are taking a proactive approach to guarantee powder access by planning B E T T E R H O L I D AY 2 0 2 1 79

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comforts and amenities of traditional ski areas. With backcountry gear rentals and lessons, a professional ski patrol and avalanche education and instruction, it's a great option for backcountry beginners. Beyond skiing and snowboarding, there is so much to do in the backcountry that is accessible for anyone visiting this winter. Activities like backcountry snowshoeing, cross country skiing, winter hiking, Nordic snow cat tours, snowmobiling, and dog sledding are fun for all ages and abilities. Aspen Snowmass and Breckenridge have the best Nordic ski centers in Colorado, while The Home Ranch near Steamboat and Devil's Thumb Ranch near Winter Park are remote resorts with worldclass cross-country skiing. Hotel Jackson can arrange private snowshoeing or snowmobiling experiences in Grand Teton National Park.


backcountry skiing trips. “Backcountry is defined as any terrain outside of resorts which is not controlled and has no avalanche mitigation,” explains Abe Pacharz, owner and lead guide at Colorado Adventure Guides. “While the backcountry is a great alternative to lift-access skiing, it is inherently dangerous and requires a continuing education, experience, and humility.” Simply put, this isn't an entry level sport. Colorado Adventure Guides offers Intro to Backcountry courses and AIARE avalanche lessons in Breckenridge. It's imperative that skiers don't go into the backcountry without taking safety classes. “Many new users may not even know when they are in a risky situation or when conditions are not suitable for

a given objective,” Pacharz says. Even after taking courses, going into the backcountry with a knowledgeable and experienced guide who has prepared an itinerary, checked the weather, route and avalanche forecast is recommended. For those planning their own adventures, Colorado is home to one of the most extensive backcountry hut systems in North America, with more than 30 huts across 350 miles of U.S. Forest Service trails. The 10th Mountain Division Huts have reduced maximum occupancy, increased disinfecting and are only allowing single-party groups to use the huts at one time to reduce the spread of Covid-19. Bluebird Backcountry combines the best elements of true backcountry with the basic

PRIVACY IS PARAMOUNT For elevated dining experiences that are comfortable and safe, restaurants are getting creative and redefining private dining rooms. Park City is dotted with picturesque Alpenglobes including at Butcher's Chop House & Bar and Stein Eriksen Lodge. The W Aspen is offering private dining in its rooftop poolside cabanas along with enclosed geo domes with Aspen Mountain views for up to eight guests. Savvy skiers are also seeking out less frequented ski destinations and less crowded slopes. Big Sky, Montana, is especially hot this year with the new Montage Big Sky bringing an elevated level of luxury to the region, including private ski lockers, ski butler service and ski-in, ski-out access to Big Sky Resort’s 5,800 skiable acres. Amber Gibson is spends 340 nights a year in hotels

searching for the latest in the travel industry. She graduated as valedictorian from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, and admires and supports CAASE in Chicago.

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CLOSER TO HOME Looking to keep it local? Check out these resorts that are a short trip from Chicago: Chestnut Mountain Resort 8700 W Chestnut Mountain Rd, Galena, IL Alpine Valley Resort W2501 Co Rd D, Elkhorn, WI Devil’s Head Resort S6330 Bluff Rd, Merrimac, WI

Canyons, Park City

Little Nell

Wilmot Mountain Ski Resort 11931 Fox River Rd, Wilmot, WI Crystal Mountain 12500 Crystal Mountain Dr, Thompsonville, MI Ski Brule 397 Brule Mountain Rd, Iron River, MI EDITED BY MACAIRE DOUGLAS

WANT MORE? From local getaways and Chicago staycations to exotic escapes, the best family-friendly destinations, and the latest trends and updates to know before you go, indulge your wanderlust and get expert planning tips at

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We Help Families Reduce Their College Costs

Gary Sipos


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Out & About




After a seemingly endless hiatus, this season marks the return of one of our most beloved holiday traditions–a night at the theater. From the Chicago premiere of Disney ‘Frozen’ to perennial favorites like “A Christmas Carol” and “The Nutcracker,” the stage is set for a magical holiday season.

Broadway in Chicago

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Science + You at The Kohl Children’s Museum Kohl Children’s Museum offers a hands-on childsized laboratory to explore how scientists impact their health and wellness. kohlchildrens Rise Up: Stonewall and the LGBTQ Rights Movement at The Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center Blending together historic images and artifacts of the LBBTQ+ rights

movement, the 85 items on display in Rise Up include posters from Harvey Milk’s campaign for public office in San Francisco, a rainbow flag in its original colors signed by its creator Gilbert Baker, and early LGBTQ magazines and publications. The Office Experience Fan of the beloved hit series The Office, this event is for you. Have you ever wanted to sit at Pam’s desk? Visit Schrute Farms? Grab

your timed-entry tickets in advance, as the pop-up will only be in town through Jan. 17, 2022. theoffice Macy’s Holiday Windows Don’t miss this fun holiday tradition and while you are there check out the Great Tree inside of the historic Walnut Room. Christmas Around the World and Holidays of Light at the Museum of Science and Industry

Explore rich holiday traditions from around the globe while creating your own traditions with loved ones. This year the museum is celebrating the golden age of travel with themed décor and a spotlight on the Pioneer Zephyr train and Take Flight’s 727. Pay a visit to Santa in his festive studio inside the Holiday Store. Reservations required to visit Santa. Skating Ribbon at Maggie Daley Park

It’s a classic Chicago winter activity! Skate on a ribbon of ice with the city as a backdrop. Reservations are required. DEC. 7-23: Q Brothers Christmas Carol at Chicago Shakespeare Theater on Navy Pier Chicago hip hop sensations the Q Brothers will heat up the holidays with a entertaining 80-minute ad-rap-tation of Charles Dickens’ classic.

DEC. 16: Adults Night Out: Holidaze at Lincoln Park Zoo From 6:30 - 10 p.m., guests can enjoy unique animal chats, educational entertainment, a live DJ, and multiple bars throughout the zoo. Proceeds help the zoo stay free and open 365 days a year. DEC. 18-19: Renegade Craft Fair The Renegade is a special event where the best of community and creativity merge as hundreds of local artists and small

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Christkindlmarket at Daley Plaza

businesses set up in the Revel Fulton Market. Join in this holiday and sip on a spiced cocktail as you shop. chicago THRU DEC. 19: Holly Jolly Concert with the Lake Forest Civic Orchestra A family holiday concert, The Lake Forest Civic Orchestra is a true community orchestra bringing professional and accomplished amateur musicians together from the area to perform Sunday concerts at its home, Gorton Community Center.


THRU DEC. 20: Evanston Art Center’s Winter Arts & Crafts Expo One of the largest and most celebrated craft shows, the annual Winter Expo features original arts and crafts by over 140 selected artisans, featuring works of jewelry,

ceramics, fiber, metal, glass, painting, photography, mixed-media, and more. THRU DEC. 23: TransSiberian Orchestra at Allstate Arena The holiday tradition returns to Rosemont to celebrate 25 years of their Christmas Eve and Other Stories album. THRU DEC. 23-JAN. 2: Music Theater Works Presents Billy Elliot the Musical at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts The award-winning musical, based on the 2000 smash-hit film, will take the stage in Skokie this holiday season. ENDS DEC. 24: Christkindlmarket Daley Plaza and ENDS DEC. 31: Wrigleyville at Gallagher Way Just in time to buy new slippers

the Christkindlmarket is back! The German inspired village is filled with gifts, food and drinks and this year you will be able to visit the original location in Daley Plaza or in Wrigleyville. Admission is free. THRU DEC. 26: The Nutcracker by The Joffrey Ballet This is a must see for the season! Christopher Wheeldon’s reimagined classic returns for the holidays. Follow young Marie and the Nutcracker Prince on a Christmas Eve journey through the 1893 World’s Fair, a dazzling spectacle of sights, sounds, and enchantment. This annual holiday tradition celebrates the magic of the season and the rich cultural heritage of Chicago. THRU DEC. 30: Reindeer at Chalet Nursery Get in the festive spirit at Chalet Nursery by surrounding yourself with lights, the smell of fresh trees which are for sale and reindeer. THRU DEC. 31: A Christmas Carol at the Goodman Theatre This year marks the 44th year of this perfect family tradition!

Museum of Science and Industry

DEC. 31: Chicago New Year’s Eve 5K Earn your right to party on New Year’s Eve and run into 2022 with the New Year’s Eve 5K! In 2021 they plan to have both virtual and in-person options available. Run

in-person at their event site on December 31, or when you choose virtually between December 26 - January 3. The in-person event will include post-race celebration and champagne toast and virtual option will include swag mailed directly to you. DEC. 31: First Night Evanston Celebrating its 25th year, First Night Evanston hosts performances throughout the evening, and is a family-friendly event. It will be virtual again this year, and host Corky Siegel will return. DEC. 31: Magic Parlor New Year’s Eve Ring in the magic of the New Year at Chicago’s iconic Palmer House Hilton. The 90-minute performance will celebrate ten years of Dennis Watkin’s The Magic Parlour, and feature third generation magician Dennis Watkins as he performs magical wisdom passed down from his grandfather. themagicparlour ENDS JAN. 2: Willow Hill’s Winter Magic A drive-thru Christmas lights experience will take place at Willow Hill Golf Course this winter. The family event will feature over one million lights, over 50 beautifully lit trees, and more. ENDS JAN. 2: The Dr. Seuss Experience Get lost in the world of Dr. Seuss and interact with the characters and

Dennis Watkins, Magic Parlour’s NYE

books you grew up loving. experienceseuss. com

ENDS JAN. 22: Disney’s Frozen at The Cadillac Palace Theatre Frozen features the songs you know and love from the original Disney award winning film. This will be an unforgettable experience for the whole family.

THRU JAN. 9: Holiday Inn at Drury Lane Theatre Oakbrook Terrace Based on the classic film, Irving Berlin’s Holiday Inn is sure to be a hit for the whole family. The musical features the Academy Awardwinning “White Christmas.” ENDS JAN. 19: Diana Krall at The Chicago Theatre Selling over 15 million albums worldwide, Krall will perform her biggest jazz hits at the historic theatre.

JAN. 22-30: Proving Up at Lyric Opera A haunting story of Nebraska homesteaders in the 1870s, this drama explores whether regular, hardworking people are able to fulfill their destiny — and what happens when their dreams turn into nightmares.

BETTER EVENTS For the latest events and local highlights, visit

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Chicago’s Better Makers O U R COM M U N IT Y COM I N G TO G E T H E R I N 202 1

B Y A L I C E FA B B R E & M E L I S S A P E R R Y

Lyric Opera’s Gala Makes a Star-Studded Return to Support the Arts Some of the Chicago-area’s most generous philanthropists gathered for the Lyric Opera of Chicago’s “Lyric Under the Stars” fundraiser, their first in-person gathering since the onstart of the pandemic. The sold-out event, held Sept. 25, drew 250 supporters to celebrate the Lyric’s return to live performances, and raised $1.8 million gross dollars. Gala Chairwoman Karen Z. Gray-Krehbiel “provided visionary support and creative influence” for the event, a Lyric news release stated. The Lyric Opera Women’s Board, led by President Caroline Torrington Huebner, organized and made the event a sweeping success. The gala, held at Two North Riverside Plaza across from the Lyric Opera House, was the result of planning that began in November 2020 for a post-pandemic event. Options included everything from a drive-in event to boat-driven tours, according to a Lyric Opera news release. Ultimately, organizers landed on an in-person gathering under a 132-foot wide translucent tent with the back wall of the Lyric Opera House across the river coming to life with vivid projections by So Midwest, a film company whose work includes the Van Gogh immersive exhibit. Anthony Freud, Lyric’s General Director, President and CEO, hosted the gala. Lyric Board Chairwoman Sylvia Neil and Lyric’s new music director Enrique Mazzola welcomed guests. The event included dinner, performances by artists from the Lyric’s mainstage season and fireworks. Lunga Erica Hallam, a South African tenor in his second year of training at Lyric’s Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center, entertained guests with his interpretation of “I Only Have Eyes for You” accompanied by pianist Jerad Mosbey. American soprano Ann Toomey, a Ryan Center alum, performed “When You Wish Upon a Star” with the Stu Hirsch Orchestra. American tenor Joshua Guerrero closed the evening with Puccini’s ode to the stars “E lucevan le stella” from Tosca with Jerad Mosbey accompanying on piano. - AP • Better was a proud sponsor of “Lyric Under the Stars.”

Enrique Mazzola, Nancy Searle, Colin Ure, Susan Noyes

Daniel Fischel, LOC board chair Sylvia Neil, LOC Music Director Enrique Mazzola

LOC Board Chair Sylvia Neil, Gala Chair Karen Z Gray-Krehbiel, Womens Board President Caroline Huebner

SPONSORS INCLUDE: ITW, Northern Trust, Mrs. John V. Crowe, Karen Z. Gray-Krehbiel & John H. Krehbiel, Jr., Patrick G. & Shirley Welsh Ryan, AON, The Harris Family Foundation, Willkie Farr & Gallagher, Susan & Nick Noyes, Rebecca & Lester Knight, Sylvia Neil & Daniel Fischel, The Negaunee Foundation, John D. & Alexandra C. Nichols, Cathy & Bill Osborn, Betsy & Andy Rosenfield, Liz Stiffel, Abbot, Norman & Virginia Bobins/The Robert Thomas Bobins Foundation, Andy & Debi Butler, Elizabeth & Michael Cole, The Crown Family, Christina Kemper & Ambassador Ronald J. Gidwitz, Caroline & Charlie Huebner, Mimi & Todd Mitchell, Susan & Robert Morrison, Penny Pritzker & Bryan Traubert, Mr. & Mrs. Scott Santi, Mr. & Mrs. J. Christopher Reyes, Nasrin & Mark Thierer, Mr. & Mrs. Richard G. Weinberg, Mrs. James N. Bay, Dr. & Mrs. Mark Bowen, Amy & Paul Carbone, Mr. & Mrs. Gregory C. Case, Mark Tatro & Margarita Chavez-Tatro, The Cozad Family, Annie & Greg Jones, Stephen A. Kaplan, Mr. & Mrs. Jay Frederick Krehbiel, Brendan & Suzanne Mulshine, Sharon & Lee Oberlander, David & Sheila Ormesher, Mr. & Mrs. Greg Pearlman, Elke & Phillippe and Lynn & Frank, Lois B. Siegel, Mr. & Mrs. Alejandro Silva, Mr. & Mrs. James P. Stirling and Roberta L. Washlow & Robert J. Washlow.


IMPACT: As a nonprofit, the generosity of donors helps make Lyric’s performances and community programs possible.

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Since 2020, Make It Better Media Group, the parent company of Better, has made a tremendous impact:

$13 , 365, 201 DOLL AR S R AISE D | 30, 262 ,921 LIVES M ADE BET TE R Can we please help your favorite NFP too?

IMPACT: The Alzheimer’s Association is the biggest nonprofit funder of Alzheimer’s research in the country. The association leads the way to end Alzheimer’s and dementia by accelerating global research, promoting early detection, and maximizing quality care and support.

Alzheimer’s Care and Support

SPONSORS INCLUDE: Bankers Life, Dentons, The Clare, Dober, SEIU, Grant Thornton, The Jachino Family, The Hogerty Family, Rush Alzheimer’s Disease Center, Northwestern Medicine, Villa, Artis Senior Living of Lakeview, Amy Sunshine, Greenberg Traurig, Jessica’s Natural Touch, Moran Family of Brands, and the Nolan Family, Make It Better Media Group, The McEssy Family, Amsive, Griffith Foods, Perfect Plastic Printing, Horizon Wealth Management, Katten, Levenfeld Pearlstein, LLC, The Lissner Family, Monarch Landing, Sedgebrook, Bartlett Wealth Management, The Convery Family, Culture Index LLC, The Raymont Group, James J. Jacqualine A. McDonough Foundation

Power of Purple: Jean Winship

Walk to End

The Alzheimer's Association Raises over $1 Million for Research and Care The Alzheimer’s Association hosted three major fundraising events from April to September, culminating in a total of $1,154,439 raised for Alzheimer’s research, early detection, and care. In April, the association raised $230,000 during their virtual “Reason to Hope” event featuring powerful testimonies from individuals facing Alzheimer’s. In June, the association teamed up with Illinois Women Conquer ALZ to host the fourth annual “Power of Purple” event to highlight Alzheimer's unique impact on women, raising $58,000. Their most recent fundraiser, “The Chicago Walk to End Alzheimer's,” attracted 1500 attendees to Soldier Field and raised an impressive $866,439. - MP


Reason to Hope: Ryan Mundy

Reason to Hope: Dr. Carillo

WANT MORE? For more inspiring success stories, matching grant opportunities, deserving nonprofits to support, and easy ways you can help those in need right now, visit

Matching Grant Collaboration Power of Purple: Meredith Marks

Reason to Hope: Paul Lisnek

Many of our Better Makers, including the Alzheimer’s Association, have worked with Make It Better Media Group to create a $10,000 matching grant campaign to support their fundraising. Find more about how these and other groups partnered with Better to grow their impact at

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IMPACT: A Safe Haven Foundation’s mission is to help people aspire, transform, and sustain their lives as they transition from homelessness to self-sufficiency through a holistic and supportive model that prioritizes housing, behavioral health, and education. Participant running along Lake Michigan.

Bill from MN jogs for homelesness

A Virtual Run to End Homelessness Makes a Direct Impact In August, A Safe Haven hosted its annual “Virtual Global Run/Walk to End Homelessness.” This event, which attracted participants from 32 states and 10 countries, raised over $350,000. All net proceeds went directly to feeding and housing an average of 5,000 homeless people, including reentry, women and children, youth, and military veteran populations, residing at A Safe Haven Foundation. “Together Again” Gala Advances the Midwest’s Response to Climate Change The Environmental Law and Policy Center raised $300,000 for Midwest climate initiatives. “Together Again” was the theme of ELPC’s 2021 Gala, which featured special guest speakers such as Senator Tammy Duckworth, White House National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy, and CNN Political Commentator David Axelrod. Impact: Founded in 1993, the Environmental Law & Policy Center is the Midwest’s leading environmental legal advocacy organization. The ELPC develops and leads strategic advocacy campaigns to link together economic development and environmental progress, in addition to protecting the Midwest’s natural resources. - MP

SPONSORS: ABC7 Chicago, Comcast NBCUniversal, iHeartMedia Chicago, Make it Better Media, NBC 5 Chicago, Telemundo and NBC Sports Chicago, The Riot Fest Foundation, American Guard Group, L.L.C., Busey Bank, Cinespace Chicago Film Studios, Gnade Insurance, Tandem HR, and West Bend Mutual Insurance Bronze: Applegate & Thorne-Thomsen, Cabrera Capital, Chicago Sun Times, Chicagoland Operators Joint Labor-Management PAC, FGMK, Lendlease, Mathematica Policy Research, Rotary/ One, Foundation, Rush University Medical Center, and Urban Works, Ltd. Community Partners: 93.9 Lite FM, All Chicago, CHHRGE (Chicago Homelessness & Health Response Group For Equity), HispanicPro, Illinois Chamber of Commerce, The Institute of Medicine of Chicago, LEEN (Latina Executive & Entrepreneur Network), Little Village Community Foundation, Negocios Now, Small Business Advocacy Council and TFOCB (The Face of Chicago Business), Kid Zone: Cristina Foods Inc.,CohnReznick, DoorDash, Enterprise Fleet Management,Michael V. Favia Law Firm, MultiLatino Marketing Inc., NAV Fund Administration, Northern Trust, Ozinga and Waubonsee Community College

“Together Again” Gala Advances the Midwest’s Response to Climate Change

Harry Drucker

Manny Flores

The Environmental Law and Policy Center raised $300,000 for Midwest climate initiatives during their gala on Sept. 24. “Together Again" was the theme, which featured special guest speakers such as Senator Tammy Duckworth, White House National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy, and CNN Political Commentator David Axelrod. - MP


Carleen Schreder

IMPACT: Founded in 1993, the Environmental Law & Policy Center is the Midwest’s leading environmental legal advocacy organization. The ELPC develops and leads strategic advocacy campaigns to link together economic development and environmental progress, in addition to protecting the Midwest’s natural resources. SPONSORS: BMO Harris Bank, Daniel Levin & Fay Hartog, Levin Ann Dudley & Stanford Goldblatt , Cameron Avery & Lynn Donaldson, Scott & Susan Heidepriem, Harry & Beth Drucker, Steven N. Miller, Lorna Puttkammer Straus

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RAISE MORE MONEY Better and Make It Better Media Group create connections for local non-profits to raise more money from our engaged audience. The Make It Better Foundation carefully vets non-profits and gives annual Philanthropy Awards to those worthy of support.


If you are a local non-profit, please consider adding our powerful, positive connectors to your fundraising strategy: Better Giving Circle Matching Grant Campaign Media Sponsorship Custom Virtual Event Online Event Calendar Give Time, Things, Support Recommendations BetterTV You Said It


$13,365,201 SINCE 2020 LIVES MADE BETTER


Better Makers Philanthropy Awards Comprehensive Non-Profit Guide Visit to learn more

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Soul & Smoke Holiday Ham


Out & About / FLAVOR

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Holidays at Home Entertaining at home can be a beautiful thing, especially if you’re willing to accept a little — or a lot — of help. BY JULIE CHERNOFF


he holidays — filled with gratitude, joy, family, and friends — are just around the corner, and this year, you want to celebrate properly at home. The biggest issue: After nearly two years (!) of your own home cooking the novelty has worn off, and you’re looking to bust out of your rut but could use a little (or a lot!) of outside help. We’ve got some thoughts on how to make it all a little easier for you, whether you bring in food from a local restaurant, just need a little help, or go whole hog and hire a caterer to take you from set up to clean up. There is no judgment here! Everyone is entitled to celebrate their holidays in the way that works best for them and their families. The important part: breaking bread together and sharing the experience.


MOTHER’S LITTLE HELPER Sorry, Keith Richards, I have something else in mind. I’ll do much of my own cooking this holiday season, but there are certain things I will definitely outsource. Case in point: I’ve got no time to bake my own bread or rolls and concentrating on the big meals means I’m not paying much attention to breakfast/brunch, the most important meal of the day! So, I’ll be pre-ordering and picking up some of Hoosier Mama’s outstanding SpinachMushroom-Gruyère Quiche ($28) and jam-packed Chicken Pot Pie ($38/9”, $12/6”), and maybe throw on a few Chocolate Chip Scones ($36/dozen, $18/half dozen) while I’m at it. And you’d be a fool to pass up Paula Haney’s insanely delicious Sour Cream Dutch Apple ($30/large, $10/small), Chocolate Cream ($30/$10), Maple Pecan ($32/$11), or Key Lime Pie ($30/$10) to fill out the holiday table. With storefronts in Lincoln Square, Wicker Park, and Evanston, you’re never too far away for a pickup — just order well in advance as they sell Hewn Bakery BrownButter Sage Rolls out the holidays regularly. You’ll find their offerings at For truly special baked goods, I turn to über-baker Ellen King of Evanston’s Hewn Bakery for many of my holiday carb needs, including her tender, pull-apart Brown Butter-Sage Rolls, and FEW Bourbon Pecan pies. For Christmas, she’ll be baking up Stollen, a sinful Bûche de Noël, and a special holiday cookie box. We always order some of her take-and-bake items, so that when we pull the cinnamonsugar-crusted Morning Buns out of the oven, the kitchen smells amazing, and we can feel like we’ve

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Out & About / FLAVOR

made an effort. Same goes for Hewn’s scrumptious Gougères and Baguettes, ready to pop in the oven. Don’t miss out on the Cranberry-Walnut Sourdough Bread, either. It makes the absolute best French Toast or slice it thinly and put it out on your cheese board — a win-win situation either way. There’s a reason they’ve been a multipleyear winner of Better’s Best Bakery – Suburbs honor. Online pre-orders are at hewnbakeryevanston. staff to help take all the pressure off. For example, founder and CEO Jodi Fyfe and her team at Paramount Events are doing December drop-off specials for the holidays, delivered hot and ready to your door through Thursday, December 23, or if you’re planning on hosting Christmas Eve or the big day itself, you can opt for them to package your meal with reheating instructions. All options have a minimum order of 10 people. Choose from brunch (bagels and fixings, Yogurt

Parfaits, Cinnamon-Apple Coffee Cake, and a Wild Mushroom-Goat Cheese Frittata), Nosh & Bites (shrimp cocktail, Brie S’Mores, Charcuterie & Cheese, Dips & Spreads), and dinner (HoneyBaked Ham, Scalloped Potatoes and Leeks, Roasted Veggies in Lemon Vinaigrette, Mixed Greens, and Dinner Rolls with Whipped Butter). Add-ons include reasonably priced wines by the bottle, Eggnog Cheesecake, Holiday Cookies, and more.


Contact Kristin Carlson Vogen at

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BRING IT IN Last year it was a true necessity, but this year many of your favorite restaurants will once again offer full holiday dinner to-go options, partially because it was a reliable profit source for them last year, but also because they realize that many people are still uncomfortable dining inside in a crowd of strangers, and winter in Chicago precludes open-air seating. As for Chicago’s top caterers, they would be thrilled to help you do the whole kit and caboodle, including

Soul & Smoke Mac and Cheese


Over at Better’s Best New Restaurant – Suburbs winner, the prolific Soul & Smoke (with outposts now in Evanston, Avondale, and the West Loop’s Time Out Market), chef D’Andre Carter, his wife, Heather Bublick, and their team are ready for the holiday onslaught. You’ve got choices here: Order in the full Christmas Feast to go — your choice of protein, Mashed Potatoes, Stuffing, Gravy, Cranberry Sauce, Roasted Sweet Potatoes, Mac & Cheese, Collard Greens and Corn Muffins — for any size group, or pick and choose your favorites on their a la carte menu. Their capable staff is happy to help you figure out what sizes to order. If roasted turkey feels too Thanksgiving-y for you, Carter’s insanely good Smoked Brisket, Roasted Ham or Braised Duck Quarters might be your protein of choice for Christmas. Carter and Bublick are also more than happy to take charge of your holiday through Feast & Imbibe, their event and catering arm. “Our event staff is fully vaccinated, and of course fully masked at all events.”

When we need an event catered in our home, we often turn to Jim Bailey of Chicago’s J & L Catering, and he’s in agreement with Bublick. “Plated meals are safest, but buffets need masked service staff to minimize guest contact with the food,” says Bailey. “The size of the event is not the issue.” As for holiday table decor, Bailey is always happy to recommend favorite florists and linen rental companies, order up all your party rental needs, and then zhuzh it up for you to make it special. J & L knows that nothing brings people together like a shared culinary experience, and they aim to make every event special, no matter the context. I’ve been dreaming about their Mini Tuna Tartare-Filled Sesame Tuiles, one of my alltime favorite appetizers, and their Spicy Salmon Cakes with Cucumber-Dill Sauce, maybe with a Hot Tomato Soup Shooter with a Mini Grilled Cheese Sandwich. That reminds me…it’s never too soon to start planning New Year’s Eve entertaining! Note: Some prices were not finalized by press time.

J & L Catering

WANT MORE? If the inspiration to cook suddenly strikes you, we’ve got you: visit

Annie Leibovitz December 7, 2021 at 7:00pm Live at the Harris Theater for Music and Dance You know her portraits, now hear from the legendary photographer herself. Join Annie Leibovitz for an exclusive event to mark the publication of her latest collection, Wonderland—a series of photographs chronicling her encounters with fashion over the years.

Get tickets and explore the fall lineup: ChicagoHumanities_1121_FNL.indd 1

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This Realtor’s on Fire!








These are just some of the beautiful homes that are available and recently sold by Janet Borden.








86 P





Number of homes sold by Janet Borden in 2020 and YTD*



#1 Agent


In Highland Park, 2019 and 2020, number of homes sold*








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Janet Borden is a Real Estate broker affiliated with Compass. Compass is a licensed Real Estate broker with a principal office in Chicago, IL and abides by all applicable Equal Housing Opportunity laws. All material presented herein is intended for informational purposes only. Information is compiled from sources deemed reliable but is subject to errors, omissions, changes in price, condition, sale, or withdrawal without notice. No statement is made as to the accuracy of any description. All measurements and square footages are approximate. This is not intended to solicit property already listed. Nothing herein shall be construed as legal, accounting or other professional advice outside the realm of Real Estate brokerage. *Data from MRED, Broker Metrics: 1/1/20-10/18/21.

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10/22/21 1:53 PM

Chicago Home



ELEGANTLY ECLECTIC In a historic home in Kenilworth, designer Sarah Montgomery mingled new furnishings with carefully chosen vintage pieces to achieve a chic, collected look. BY TATE GUNNERSON PHOTOGRAPHS BY MARGARET RAJIC

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Previous page: In the family room, embroidered window treatments from Eastern Accents play off zebra hide-covered stools. This page: The family room includes an area rug by Surya, a tailored sofa by Meg Made and a chair upholstered in velvet around a 1930s French Empire Neoclassical-style coffee table.

hen a couple walked into a stucco-clad Kenilworth house, built in 1899 as a dormitory for a private school, they quickly realized they’d found the perfect home for their family, which included two young children and a third on the way. The front foyer was bathed in natural daylight, which streamed in from the third-floor skylight. Unlike in many older homes, the main rooms were spacious and the layout was open and breezy, which appealed to the wife (the couple prefer not to be named). “I just wanted the kitchen to connect to the family room so that I wasn’t alone doing the dishes,” she says. To help them make the house their own, the couple turned to Chicago interior designer Sarah Montgomery, who started her eponymous interior design studio in 2017, after years of designing window displays, stage sets and products (most recently for the local bedding and soft home furnishings manufacturer Eastern Accents). “She was younger in her career, and her ideas were really fresh,” the wife says. Montgomery quickly got to know her clients, noting that although they were largely on the same page, the husband gravitated toward a

more traditional style than the wife, whose tastes were eclectic. Reviewing the inspiration images the couple pulled from magazines and Pinterest “gave me an idea about the space they wanted, a space that would be very personal and very layered with art and accessories,” the designer explains. “They had a big blank slate and didn’t know where to start.” Working room by room, the designer incorporated a mix of vintage and antique finds alongside new furnishings, existing heirlooms and an intriguing art collection that included everything from antique oil paintings to outsider art. “It feels collected and thoughtful, but not too precious,” Montgomery says. Take the family room, for example. A traditional patterned rug in shades of blue and olive green establishes a serene color palette, playing off the tailored white sofa and a dusty blue velvet chair. Zebra hidecovered footstools and embroidered window treatments add panache. In front of the window alongside the fireplace, the designer found a place for the family’s old black kitchen table, which she paired with two new chairs—a delightful spot to enjoy the view. “I love this room,” the wife says. “It’s so calming.”

WANT MORE? For more home decor and design inspiration, expert advice from industry leaders, and stunning pieces by local artists, visit


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Clockwise from top left: A mid-20th-century carved wooden rocking ram contributes to the home’s collected look. On the bookshelf is a curated selection of vintage leatherbound books, thrift-store finds and family heirlooms. Zebra-hide host chairs and side chairs from Ethan Allen surround a long wooden table by Walter E. Smith in the formal dining room. In a dining-room nook, a colorful abstract still-life artwork from Chairish hangs above a table that can serve as a bar.

The mix of influences flows throughout the interior. In the dining room, for example, a pair of zebra-patterned host chairs energize a traditional wooden table and black side chairs. On opposite walls, a vibrant abstract still-life painting is juxtaposed with a rather seriouslooking oil painting that came from the wife’s grandparents. In the formal living room, a traditional Persian rug layered over a larger sisal one creates a pleasing backdrop for a plush navy sofa and a pair of 1970s French provincial style club chairs recovered in an embroidered fabric. The colorful oversized chevron pattern on the chair backs can be seen from the street. “They were willing to do some adventurous things,” Montgomery says. Just as interesting are the recessed shelves flanking the fireplace, which Montgomery painted in a dark gray and styled with leatherbound books, potted plants and a mix of objets d’art. Steps away, a children’s wooden rocker carved in the shape of a ram—a gift from the prior owners—adds to the collected atmosphere. Also left behind by the prior owners are sketches of the historic house, a large-scaled framed photo of the exterior and a pair of rolled up blueprints from a prior renovation decades ago, which are now displayed in the office. The blend of old and new appeals to the newly minted suburbanites, who have already referred Montgomery to their neighbors. The wife says, “I love that our house is approachable and unpretentious.”

Tate Gunnerson is a Chicago-based freelance journalist with an equal appreciation for natural beauty and good design. He is a passionate supporter of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

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Opening night at The Music Box.

Gianfranco Rosi receives the Artistic Achievement Award.

The audience at THE LAST DISPATCH.

Rebecca Hall receives the Chicago International Film FPresentation of her film, PASSING.

Chicago International Film Festival Artistic Director Mimi Plauché, BELFAST director Sir Kenneth Branagh, and Chicago International Film Festival Managing Director Vivian Teng.

Director Rebecca Halpern at the World Premiere of LOVE, CHARLIE: THE RISE AND FALL OF CHEF CHARLIE TROTTER.

Harold Washington aide Jackie Grimshaw at the World Premiere of PUNCH 9 FOR HAROLD WASHINGTON.

Amrita Singh, director of short WINNING IN AMERICA.

Director Jesse Moss at the World Premiere of MAYOR PETE.

“Cinema is not only about making people dream. It's about changing things and making people think.” – Nadine Labaki BETTER WAS PROUD TO BE A SPONSOR OF THE 57TH CHICAGO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL, Oct. 13-24, 2021. Visit to read highlights and reviews from the festival and join us in supporting Cinema/Chicago, the presenting organization of the Chicago International Film Festival. Cinema/Chicago enriches the community through programming devoted to international and independent cinema. To support their mission and education programs year round, donate via the link on our website ( and Better will match donations up to $10,000. WANT MORE? See our full coverage at


Ref lections

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CLASSIC + FRESH Having served in the North Shore community for over 100 years, Chalet is your one-stop destination for creating joyous memories and traditions for your friends and family. Visit Chalet for everything you need to bring the magic and the beauty of the season into your home.

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HELP LIGHT UP THE HOLIDAYS Like so many of Chicago’s precious nonprofit cultural institutions, Navy Pier spent the year adapting to new challenges. We’re continually balancing public health while safely providing free, enriching arts and culture programming to our millions of neighbors, friends, and guests all year round. As we celebrate the final days of our newest holiday adventure, Light up the Lake, we’re already looking to the future and opportunities for our city and our Pier. With your partnership and support, we will continue living out our identity as The People’s Pier and brightening the holiday spirits of our community for decades to come. With your help, Navy Pier is here for good. Join our community of dedicated supporters by making your own holiday gift at NAVYPIER.ORG/MISSION

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