Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee will honor Mary Ellen Stanek, managing director and director of asset management for Robert W. Baird Co. as this year’s Most Valuable Person during its annual Salute to Youth-MVP Dinner and Celebration on Monday, May 21 at Potawatomi Bingo Casino’s expo center. The evening begins with a reception at 5 p.m. followed by the dinner and program at 6:15 p.m. Salute to Youth – MVP Dinner and Celebration celebrates individuals and organizations who embody the Clubs’ mission and are committed to uplifting local youths for positive, lasting change.
Stanek has served as a member of Boys & Girls Clubs Board of Trustees since 1997. As its Chair from 2003 to 2005, Stanek led efforts that allowed the Clubs to reach more children by expanding from 22 locations to 26. Also during Stanek’s tenure, the Clubs increased its partnerships with other community organizations, which today is part of Clubs’ model for effectively serving children and efficiently using resources to best meet the needs of its members.
In addition to Stanek, the evening’s other top honor – the Northwestern Mutual Foundation Youth of the Year – goes to Larsharae Hooker. She is a member of the Augusta M. LaVarnway Boys & Girls Club and serves as the top Boys & Girls Clubs youth ambassador. Youth of the Year is the highest honor any Club member can receive and it recognizes outstanding contributions to a member’s family, school, community and Boys & Girls Club, as well as overcoming personal challenges and obstacles.
In addition to the above, the Boys & Girls Clubs will recognize the following organizations and individuals for their dedication to improving the lives of Milwaukee ’s young people.
U.S. Cellular will receive the Fred F. Loock Memorial Award for helping Milwaukee ’s youths live richer and fuller lives through its actions and deeds. It is named after Fred Loock, a former president of the Clubs’ Board of Trustees and president of the former Allen-Bradley Company. The Key Award, established by Boys & Girls Clubs of America, goes to Johnson Controls for its exemplary community service locally and nationally.
This year’s Annabell Cook Whitcomb Award goes to Anne Zizzo, president & CEO of Zizzo Group Marketing + PR + New Media. The award is named after the Milwaukee Clubs’ founder and honors a person who shares her same passion and drive. Zizzo joined the Boys & Girls Clubs Board of Trustees in 2003 and serves on numerous committees.
Lastly, the Irving J. Seher Award will be awarded to Henry Herzing, chancellor and founder of Herzing University. The award is named after the long-time executive director of the Milwaukee Boys Club and is given to a Club alumnus whose contributions to the community reflect the Boys & Girls Clubs’ mission. Since founding Herzing University in 1965, Herzing has remained committed to providing young people with access to higher education to strengthen their ability to pursue and attain career goals. He is also the founder of the Herzing Educational Foundation.
In its second year in a row, U.S. Cellular serves as the presenting sponsor for the Clubs’ Salute to Youth – MVP Dinner and Celebration. The event is also made possible thanks to these sponsors: Argosy Foundation, Robert W. Baird, Fiserv, Herzing University, Marquette University, Tamarack Petroleum, Milwaukee Brewers, Northwestern Mutual Foundation, Time Warner Cable, The PNC Financial Services Group, Husco International, Johnson Controls, Associated Bank, A. O. Smith, Coca-Cola , Deloitte, Ernst & Young, FIS, Harley- Davidson Motor Company, Laughlin/Constable, MillerCoors, Michael Best & Friedrich LLP, RBC Wealth Management, Reinhart Boerner Van Deueren, UnitedHealthcare, Rockwell Automation, Diane Zore, BMO Harris, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, Foley & Lardner, Godfrey & Kahn, Johnson Bank, JP Morgan Chase Bank, Manpower- Group, Guy Smith, Rite-Hite, Summit Credit Union, Uihlein- Wilson Architects, We Energies, Zizzo Group Marketing + PR + NewMedia, Joseph & Vera Zilber Family Foundation,