2023 Do Something Great Recipients Announced

Awards honor Macon County residents making a difference in our community.

Macon County– Five area residents, one organization and one couple have been named recipients of the 2023 Do Something Great awards. This annual awards program honors amazing individuals and organizations who have made a significant positive impact on Macon County through giving of their time, talent and/or treasure. The Community Foundation of Macon County (CFMC) has sponsored this program for the past 19 years. This year, awardees were honored in seven different categories.

“This year’s Do Something Great honorees represent some of our community’s most generous individuals and organizations,” says CFMC President, Natalie Beck. “They are the trailblazers who go above and beyond for our community and have brought about real possibility, change and hope for Macon County. They regularly step up to meet community needs and exemplify the common bonds that connect us.”

All awardees and their guests will be honored at a presentation luncheon held Wednesday, August 2. Media are encouraged to attend the awards ceremony.

For more information about the Do Something Great awards program, call Rachel Moran at 217.429.3000 or send an email to rmoran@maconcountygives.org. To view a list of past recipients, visit www.heartofillinois.org/award-recipients.

The 2023 Do Something Great Awards

Award of Excellence for Inclusion
Award honors a nonprofit organization/or individual at the frontier of advancing inclusion and working toward an equitable Macon County community. The nomination should include evidence demonstrating an ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion, to advancing diversity awareness within Macon County, and to serving as an advocate for the interests of underrepresented populations.

Rich Hansen, nominated by Evelyn Hood, Executive Director African American Cultural and Genealogical Society of Illinois, Inc. Museum

A Mt. Zion High School teacher, Rich has created multiple exhibits at the African American Cultural museum, is a board member of the museum and is passionate about the Civil Rights Era.

Outstanding Young Philanthropist
Award recognizes service by an individual or organization of individuals under age 40 who demonstrates outstanding commitment to the community through direct financial support, development of charitable programs, volunteerism and leadership in philanthropy.

Maroa-Forsyth National Honor Society and faculty rep Ken Parks, nominated by Joanie Keyes, Director Special Olympics Illinois – Region 1
In the past five years, the Maroa-Forsyth National Honor Society has raised in excess of $60,000 for the Illinois Law Enforcement Polar Plunge to benefit Region I Special Olympics.

Outstanding Volunteer/Board Member
Award presented to an individual who has demonstrated exceptional leadership skills, devoted great time and effort to charitable causes, and shown a deep commitment of voluntary action to address community needs.

Kay Nims, nominated by Rikki Parker, Executive Director Children’s Museum of Illinois

In her nomination, Rikki named Kay as the “patron saint” of the museum. Kay still volunteers each Tuesday at the museum’s front desk, is a museum donor, a former board member, and volunteers at museum events.

Outstanding Professional Partner
Award presented to a business/professional partner that has demonstrated outstanding commitment to philanthropy by aiding nonprofit organizations in our community. The nomination should include evidence of direct financial contributions to and/or support of the community, impact of financial support or projects in the community, and specific achievements launched through the corporation’s philanthropic efforts.

Nick Lane at JT Net, nominated by Natalie Beck, President of The Community Foundation of Macon County

Along with designing and creating multiple nonprofit website, Nick designed the interactive community wish list for the CFMC site, resulting in over $400,000 in financial gifts to area nonprofits in just two years.

Outstanding Philanthropic Support to the Arts
Award honors creators, conceivers, radical thinkers and risk-takers providing philanthropic support to the arts in Macon County.

Dina Fryman, nominated by Jerry Johnson, Executive Director Decatur Area Arts Council and Penny Williams, Theatre 7

Dina has volunteered with Theatre 7 for over 40 years. She has served as the costume designer and served on the Theatre 7 board.

Ray Batman Nonprofit Professional of the Year
Award presented to an individual paid professional who has demonstrated outstanding commitment, dedication and talent toward helping society. This may include (but is not limited to) executive directors, directors of development, program directors and support staff. In 2021, this annual award was renamed in memory of the late Ray Batman, longtime executive director of Dove, Inc. and community champion.

Gail Evans, nominated by Angel Lawrence, Executive Director Northeast Community Fund

Gail is the former executive director of the Decatur Macon County Opportunities Corporation. During her 53-year career, she was responsible for implementing many community social service programs. Although retired, she continues to serve the community as a Northeast Community Fund board member.

Robert and Bev Ketenbrink Community Commitment Award
Award presented to an individual, a couple or a family with a record of exceptional generosity, demonstrated outstanding civic or charitable responsibility, and leadership that has encouraged and motivated others toward roles in philanthropy. This award includes a $1,000 grant to the recipient's charity of choice.

Vinnie and Debra Barbee, nominated by Brian Conerty, Manager Water Street Mission

Known as Decatur’s first couple of food philanthropy, Vinnie and Debra provide Thanksgiving, Easter and summer meals to those in need. In addition, they raise funds throughout the year, including at car shows and block parties, to purchase toys for area children at Christmas time.

Established in 2000, The Community Foundation of Macon County stewards more than 370 funds and total assets of $45.5 million. To date, The Community Foundation has distributed $44 million to charitable organizations and endeavors. For more information about The Community Foundation of Macon County, visit maconcountygives.org.