Small Town Heroes

Small Town Hero Nominations are Open!


The United Way of Northwest Illinois started the Small Town Heroes campaign in 2016 as a way to acknowledge the unsung heroes in Northwest Illinois. The campaign was so well received, that we decided to make it an annual campaign. 

The United Way believes that in order to live better, we must LIVE UNITED, and we see many people in our community that share this philosophy and are pitching in everyday to improve lives in Northwest Illinois. 

The campaign, now in its 8th year, sponsored by FHN features artistic photographs by Kurt Koester Photography as well as inspiring quotes from individuals who give of their time and talent so tirelessly to our region, and help encourages others to join them in their work. These types of individuals truly embody the mission and values of the United Way of Northwest Illinois, and it is our pleasure to share their stories with our region.

If you know someone who is doing amazing things in the communities of Stephenson, Jo Daviess & Carroll Counties, tell us about them & what they are doing, by completing the nomination form by July 1st.  

The recognition ceremony will be held after the Lincoln Douglas 5K on August 10th, at Taylor Park in Freeport. 

Things to consider when making your nomination:

  • Does this individual do things above & beyond their current job to give back to the community?
  • Do they exemplify the qualities of a servant leader? (Meaning they put the needs of others or the community above their own)
  • What level of change have they helped to make in the community?
  • How have their actions helped to inspire others to give back to their community?
  • Do they represent a cross sector of our community? 

2023 Small Town Heroes