Tell us what initially attracted you to Children’s Place Association?

I first heard about Children’s Place a few months after joining CIBC Bank USA in 2014. I attended a presentation given by Junior Board members who [at the time] were colleagues. I was inspired  by their presentation, primarily by the fact that a group of young people could be so engaged and willing to give back to their community through fundraising and volunteering their time for an amazing organization.

Maggie Ryan (top of image, right) with fellow Junior Board Members at the 2018 Pumpkin Carving Event at our Early Learning Center.

While the organization supports families, I was drawn to the Children’s Place focus on helping Chicago’s most vulnerable children. Growing up in a large family, I was very lucky to have been surrounded by lots of siblings and cousins, and support is important for children.

Also, my experience volunteering with the kids at Children’s Place has allowed me to watch their progress from education to overall —it is truly amazing and makes me feel very special to get to be a part of their lives.

What is life like for you outside of your 9 to 5 and being and being a Children’s Place Volunteer?

People can catch me hanging out with friends and family, probably at my Grandpa’s lake house in Powers Lake, WI. I also enjoy attending concerts, playing very amateur beach volleyball, and trying out new restaurants in Chicago.

I am obsessed with stand-up comedy; recently I saw John Mulaney (a Chicago native) perform stand-up at the Chicago Theatre, and, months later, drove the hour North to Waukegan to see him perform the same exact show.

Flashback to when you were 10 years old; was the world of banking on your mind?

When I was 10 years old, I wanted to be an elementary-level math teacher when I grew up. I love my current career and believe my 10-year old dreams are alive in my involvement with Children’s Place. I always knew I loved numbers, but I was passionate about having the ability to help others and see someone benefit from anything I could to do support them.

What do you see and feel when working with Children’s Place staff?

The Children’s Place staff is a very special group of people. They are truly dedicated to their craft – doing their best to ensure every child is cared for on a day-to-day basis. You can see their hard work pay off firsthand when you visit the Early Learning Center or Residential Center. Every employee contributes to creating positive learning and living environments at each Children’s Place location.

So why should young professionals consider joining you as Children’s Place Association Junior Board member? What can they expect?

Members can put their professional and personal networks to work in order to support an organization that is right in their backyard. As a member, you can expect to gain a firsthand awareness of a worthy population of people in Chicago that need our collective help. You will be inspired to use your resources to give the children and families of Children’s Place the support they deserve. Not only are we using our time and resources to help Chicago’s most vulnerable, but you can also expect to make some lifelong friends along the way!