Big Brothers Big Sisters of Will and Grundy Counti (Joilet, IL)


  • Name:Carrie Carnaghi
  • Title:Fund Development Specialist/ Grant Writer

Organization Address

  • Organization Name:Big Brothers Big Sisters of Will and Grundy Counti
  • Address:417 W Taylor St
    Joilet, IL 60435
    United States

Organization Phone

  • Main phone:8157232227
  • Main fax:8157237030

Organization Web

User Email


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  • Mission:
  • The mission of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Will and Grundy Counties is to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one-to-one relationships that change their lives for the better, forever.

  • Overview:
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters has been making a big impact in communities across America for more than 100 years. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Will and Grundy Counties is a 501(c)(3) not for profit organization serving children in Will, Grundy, Kankakee and Iroquois Counties. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Will and Grundy Counties is also a licensed chapter of Big Brothers Big Sisters of America- the oldest, largest and most effective youth mentoring organization in the United States.

    Big Brothers Big Sisters of Will and Grundy Counties provides children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one-to-one relationships that change their lives. Supporting adult mentors work with youth whose backgrounds include high rates of child poverty, educational challenges, family dysfunction and juvenile arrest rates. The youth are at-risk and have elevated exposure to crime, gangs, violence, and substance abuse. Big Brothers Big Sisters mentoring “match” relationships provide children with positive encouragement and a reliable source of support from a caring adult. Every volunteer “Big” is fully screened, then interviewed, trained and prepared to assist one child (their “Little) to achieve and surpass their individual goals. Case manager track the relationships between the Bigs and Littles, offering support and guidance to help the Bigs in their efforts to help the Littles to grow, succeed in (school and beyond), and becoming productive, successful members of the community.

    Big Brothers Big Sisters was selected by Forbes magazine as one if its top 10 charities, making the publication’s “gold star” list of charities. Additionally, Big Brothers Big Sisters was named the #1 nonprofit for at-risk youth by Guide Star’s Philanthropedia. Big Brothers Big Sisters mentoring model has been approved by the National Registry of Effective Practices (NERPP), a leading authority on evidence based programs. As the leader in quality, one-to-one youth mentoring Big Brothers Big Sisters received praise for our effective mentoring model that leads to positive and measurable youth outcomes for children who face adversity, as well as for our organizational leadership and community outreach.

    We have two core programs of one-to-one matches: community- based mentoring and site-based mentoring. Our programs are designed to meet the needs of at-risk youth through mentoring relationships. Through these efforts, children receive help with schoolwork, build new relationships, and achieve success. In our community based program, children are matched with carefully screened men (Big Brothers), women (Big Sisters) or couples (Big Couples) for mentoring activities. The mentors provide support and guidance for the kids. The matches meet approximately every other week for 2-4 hours of fun activities in the community. A one-year minimum commitment is required for both Bigs and Littles. Our mentoring buddies program, is an after-school enrichment program. Volunteers provide one-to-one mentoring to elementary school students in a supervised, group setting. The matches meet once a week for ninety minutes during the school year. Another site based program we offer is lunch buddies; this mentoring program takes place during school hours at a participating elementary school. Mentors provide one-to-one companionship during the child’s lunch hour. Volunteers eat lunch with the child while doing a shared activity such as reading a library book, or tackling a tough math problem. Matches meet once a week for one hour during the school year.

    National research has shown that positive relationships between Littles and their Bigs have a direct measurable impact on childrens lives. Children in our program are:
    52% less likely to skip school
    46% less likely to begin using illegal drugs
    27% less likely to begin using alcohol
    33% less likely to resort to violence

    A survey conducted by Harris Interactive on children who participated in our program, found:

    90% agreed their Big made them feel better about themselves
    81% say their Big caused them to change what they thought what possible in life
    77% set higher goals for themselves
    42% went on to earn a 4-year college degree

    We empower children to reach their goals and become successful individuals.

  • History:
  • For over a century, Big Brothers Big Sisters has been helping change kids’ perspectives and giving them the opportunity to reach their potential.

    It all started in 1904, when a young New York City court clerk named Ernest Coulter was seeing more and more boys come through his courtroom. He recognized that caring adults could help many of these kids stay out of trouble, and he set out to find volunteers. That marked the beginning of the Big Brothers movement. At around the same time, the members of a group called Ladies of Charity were befriending girls who had come through the New York Children’s Court. That group would later become Catholic Big Sisters. Both groups continued to work independently until 1977, when Big Brothers Association and Big Sisters International joined forces and became Big Brothers Big Sisters of America.

    More than 100 years later, Big Brothers Big Sisters remains true to our founders’ vision of bringing caring role models into the lives of children. And, today, Big Brothers Big Sisters currently operates in all 50 states—and in 12 countries around the world.

    Big Brothers Big Sisters of Will and Grundy Counties was founded in 1970 by Daryl Alderson. Here is a look at our local history, from the start:

    1969 - Representative from Big Brothers of America come to Joliet to encourage community to establish program

    1970- Big Brothers of Will County established by Darly Alderson with help from Attorney William Kaplan

    1971-First fund raising campaign led by co-chairs George Mahoney and Gene Pozzi; major donors and workers Henry & Doris Alderson, Amos Anderson, Richard Hertzmann, Max Zollner and many others.

    1972 -Daryl Alderson hired as executive director; office opens in Executive Plaza Building, 2317 W Jefferson in Joliet; Tom Cawley hired as first caseworker.

    1973 -First Big Brother-Little Brother match; Dan Lott first Big Brother. Community Services Council recognizes Big Brothers Big Sisters for meeting unmet community need. High school students initiate Phone-a-Thon fundraiser; teen organizers include Marja Buckingham, Steve Hunckler, Jeff Barnes; second fund raising drive chaired by Richard Hertzmann.

    1977- Big Brothers of America & Big Sisters International merge. Service to girls added thanks to Pearl Kaatz, Cathy Block, Ruth Oyer, Linda Storch, and others. First Big Sister–Little Sister match.

    1978- First Annual Christmas Party hosted by Joliet West High School Key Club and Dave Hooper.

    1981- Couples for Kids program started.

    1982- First Bowl for Kids' Sake bowl-a-thon held at Town & Country Lanes in Joliet.

    1985-After School Mentoring/Homework program established involving high schools, colleges, churches, and businesses.

    1988- Mini-Golf Course fundraising enterprise at Jefferson Square Mall opens; Teen Board established.

    1991- Santa Express Train makes first run to “North Pole” entertaining 3000 children and adults; new building in Crest Hill dedicated.

    1996-Big Brothers Big Sisters of America award for After-School Mentoring/Homework program received. Art & Vera Smith make substantial bequest /donation to endowment. Service expands to Grundy County.

    1997- State of Illinois recognizes agency with Hometown Award.

    2000- Santa Express Train makes final trip to “North Pole” having entertained nearly 50,000 children and adults during its 10 year run. First executive director Daryl Alderson retires; Bethy Hobby named replacement.

    2004 -Beth Hobby retires; Lisa Morel Las appointed Chief Executive Officer.

    2005 -State of Illinois recognizes with Hometown Award, once again.

    2008 -Under the leadership of Board Chairman John S. Mortimer, the agency purchases and moves operations to larger building at located 417 Taylor Street, Joliet.

    2009- A full-service Grundy County satellite office is opened in the First Midwest Bank Building in Morris. The agency receives its first federal grant funding: a 3-year, $300,000 Mentoring Children of Prisoners grant.

    2010 - Congresswoman Debbie Halvorson provides $185,000 Expansion of Mentoring earmark grant in FY10 Federal Budget. Agency's service area expanded to include Kankakee and Iroquois Counties. A second Mentoring Children of Prisoners grant received as part of a statewide collaboration with the Big Brothers Big Sisters Illinois State Association.

    2011-A full-service satellite office to serve Kankakee and Iroquois Counties is opened.

  • Year established:1970
  • Endowment:Unknown

Board and Executive Names

  • Board Members / Trustees:
  • Jim Serr, Chairperson

    Lori Bergman

    Herbert Brooks, Jr.

    Thomas E. Grotovsky

    Patrick Harbour

    William Kent

    Mark A. Lichtenwalter

    Melinda Mackey

    Karen Miklic

    Karyn McCarthy

    Rick Papp

    Richard Rodriguez

    Brian Schipiour

    Patrick Schumacher

  • Executive Director / President:
  • Lisa Morel Las
    Chief Executive Officer

Staff Names

  • Key Staff:
  • Lisa Morel Las, M.Ed.
    Chief Executive Officer

    Beth Kasper, M.B.A., M.S.
    Director of Finance

    Suzanne Vilt, M.S.W.
    Program Manager

    Lorraine Guerrero, M.S.W, LSW
    School-Based Enrollment/Match Support Specialist

    Courtney Schaus, B.S.W
    Match Support Specialist

    Cruz Ramirez, B.S.W.
    Match Support Specialist

    Matthew Todd, B.A.
    Vista Volunteer/ Match Support Specialist

    Carrie Carnaghi, M.A.
    Fund Development Specialist

    Sam Nantz, B.A.
    Special Events Coordinator

    Vivian Mather
    Office Manager/ Customer Relations Specialist


  • Organization type:Grantseeker
  • Country of registration:United States
  • Tax Determination Letter:Received Determination Letter
  • IRS Section:501(c)(3)
  • IRS Subsection:None
  • Tax ID:23-7072557

Other Organization Web

IRS Business Master File Information

  • EIN:237072557
  • Sort (Secondary) Name:
  • Care Of Name:
  • Organization Address:417 TAYLOR STREET
  • Organization City:JOLIET
  • Organization State:IL
  • Organization Zip:60435-6126
  • Group Exemption Number:0000
  • Subsection Code:03
  • Classification Code(s):1, 2
  • Subsection/Classification Desc.:Charitable Organization, Educational Organization
  • Affiliation Code:3
  • Ruling Date:May, 1970
  • Deductibility Code:1
  • Foundation Code:15
  • Foundation Code Desc.:Organization which receives a substantial part of its support from a governmental unit or the general public 170(b)(1)(A)(vi)
  • Activity Code(s):328, 349, 059
  • Activity Code Desc.(s):Combat juvenile delinquency, Other youth organization or activities, Other school related activities
  • Organization Code:1 (Corporation)
  • Exempt Org. Status Code:01 (Unconditional Exemption)
  • Tax Period:December, 2016
  • Filing Requirement Category:01 (990 (all other) or 990EZ return)
  • Accounting Period:December
  • NTEE Code:
  • Asset Amount:$1,546,787
  • Asset Code:6 ($1,000,000 - $4,999,999)
  • Income Amount:$403,378
  • Income Code:4 ($100,000 - $499,999)
  • 990 Revenue Amount:$371,666
  • Last Updated:2/20/2018 11:08:09 pm

This information is directly from the IRS Exempt Organization Business Master File at Exempt Organizations Business Master File Extract. This information is not under the control of the Common Grant Application and is collected and compiled and can only be changed by the IRS.