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Around the Tri States: Former WIRC director named to Hall of Fame; G.L. Vitale Foundation awards community grants

Jane Carlson
Tri States Public Radio

A weekly roundup of news from around the region.

Former WIRC director named to Hall of Fame

Suzan Nash of Macomb is now a member of the Illinois Community Action Hall of Fame.

She was inducted during a recent conference in Springfield.

Nash worked at Western Illinois Regional Council for more than 40 years. She started there as an intern in 1978. She became acting executive director in 1981, and soon afterwards was appointed executive director.

WIRC is a nonprofit organization that helps people and communities with multiple programs, such as domestic violence and sexual assault services, housing rehabilitation programs, and public water projects.

G.L. Vitale Foundation awards community grants

The G.L. Vitale Family Foundation awarded a total of $115,000 to three community organizations in Galesburg.

The Knox Galesburg Symphony received $50,000 for its “Music for the Future” Capital Campaign. The funds will support the first phase of renovations for the new Symphony Center on Seminary Street.

The Knox County YMCA also received $50,000. They’ll use the funds to help build a new indoor PlayZone that families can use year-round.

CASA of West Central Illinois received $15,000 to help hire a volunteer recruiter who would be responsible for recruiting at least 20 new volunteers. Their goal is to have volunteer advocates for every child in foster care.

The G.L. Vitale Foundation is an independent foundation dedicated to enhancing quality of life for Knox County residents.

Pike County man charged with 48 crimes

A Pike County man faces 48 criminal charges, including five counts of Predatory Criminal Sexual Assault, three counts of Child Pornography, and two counts of Aggravated Battery to a Child.

Illinois State Police arrested Austin Rodhouse, 30, of Pleasant Hill on a charge of Aggravated Domestic Battery on May 8, 2024.

A follow-up investigation led to the numerous other charges filed by the Pike County State’s Attorney’s Office.

State police said more victims have been identified and further criminal charges are pending.

Sandburg student wins bronze

A Carl Sandburg College student won a bronze medal in masonry at the SkillsUSA Championships in Atlanta.

Gavin Gerard of Oneida is Sandburg’s first medalist in the national competition.

He qualified for nationals after winning gold at the Illinois championships this spring.

Four other Sandburg students also competed nationally this year.

SkillsUSA helps students prepare for careers in skilled, technical, and service occupations.

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