Friday, September 26, 2008

Volunteer Spotlight: Tami Wielgus

This week, we're proud to put Tami Wielgus, a 3 year veteran volunteer, in our volunteer spotlight. After moving to Chicago in 2004, Tami jumped into a leadership role here at Cabrini Connections-taking charge of Wednesday night tutoring sessions as one of our volunteer coordinators. However, this was not her first foray into youth tutoring/mentoring; in fact before her move she was an active mentor in the Appleton, Wisconsin Big Brothers/Big Sisters program for over 6 years. Even today she continues to stay in contact with her mentee, Gisel, helping her to navigate the road to college and a career.

When not volunteering her time and energy here at Cabrini Connections, Tami serves as Controller/Asset Manager and corporate Treasurer for the Community Reinvestment Fund (CRF), a not-for-profit syndicator of equity investments in various types of real estate projects, that, like Cabrini Connections, aims to help change the lives of people living in economically disadvantaged communities by assisting to strengthen those communities. CRF's invested capital helps revitalize dilapidated neighborhood retail areas which help provide amenities for area residents and generate employment opportunities. Furthermore, CRF's invested funds in For-Sale housing help provide homeownership opportunities that are affordable to households with lower incomes.

Though Tami is clearly good with numbers and data - she is a Certified Public Accountant with a master's degree in real estate finance and investment from NYU -she absolutely shines when interacting with our students and volunteers here at Cabrini Connections. Her years of mentoring experience combined with her knack for putting people at ease, makes her perfect for the volunteer coordinator's primary task, that of fostering a comfortable, collaborative mentoring environment at the center and offering the necessary support to both mentors and mentees so that their relationships can grow. Thanks Tami for your leadership! Volunteers like you allow Cabrini Connections to make such a difference in the lives of our youth!

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