Eric Witczak honored as a Green Bay Area Chamber of Commerce BBJ magazine’s ‘20+10 People You Should Know in 2010’

Eric Witczak, and his wife, Kelly at the BBJ 20+10 reception

The Green Bay Area Chamber of Commerce celebrated its 5th annual BBJ magazine’s “People You Should Know” awards tonight, honoring 31 local individuals including Eric Witczak of Nicolet National Bank in the Banking Industry.

These honorees – and the February/March 2010 issue of the BBJ magazine – were unveiled at a reception hosted at the Swan Club at Legends in De Pere.

“If Eric Witczak is on your board, you can guarantee things will get done,” said Jody Weyers, volunteer and communications director, for the American Red Cross Lakeland Chapter.  “As vice chair for the American Red Cross Lakeland Chapter he is a great role model and leader and we are very proud to have him recognized for his accomplishments by the Green Bay Area Chamber of Commerce.

This year’s awards, entitled “20 + 10 People You Should Know in 2010,” honored 21 individuals (due to a tie) who have more than 10 years of experience in their respective industries and have made a significant impact in their fields. The awards also honored 10 individuals with 10 or fewer years of experience in their respective industries or fields who have made a significant impact in their fields. All honorees met criteria for which the BBJ “People You Should Know” awards are known, including accomplishments/contributions in their respective industries; spirit, drive, ambition, innovativeness and creativity; employment at Green Bay Area Chamber of Commerce members; and living or working in Brown County.

“I’m pleased to celebrate the 5th anniversary of our BBJ magazine’s ‘People You Should Know’ by honoring some of the mainstays in our community,” said Paul Jadin, president, Green Bay Area Chamber of Commerce. “These individuals – all of whom have made a significant mark in their respective fields – play a significant role in making life ‘Better on the Bay.’ To all of them, I say, ‘Congratulations.’”

Profiles on the all the honored individuals – including their photos – are featured in an online version of the BBJ magazine, available at

American Red Cross Lakeland Chapter Responds to a Duplex Fire

Monday, February 15, two American Red Cross Lakeland Chapter volunteers responded to a duplex fire around 12:30am on Suburban Dr, in De Pere. The fire displaced two adults and two teenagers. Only one side of the duplex was affected.

Disaster workers assisted the family with lodging, monetary assistance for clothing and food. We also provided the clients with comfort kits (which include soap, shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste, washcloth, comb, facial tissue, deodorant, razors, shaving cream and lotion) and homemade quilts.

Red Cross disaster assistance is free and is made possible by community donations. You can help individuals of this disaster and others by making a financial gift to the American Red Cross Lakeland Chapter’s local disaster relief fund. For information call the Lakeland Chapter at 920-468-8535 or visit

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or join our blog at


Luxemburg-Casco Primary Raises $1,206.02 For Haiti Relief

Luxemburg-casco Primary is located in Luxemburg, WI and is one of 2 elementary schools in Luxemburg-casco School District. It is a public school that serves 420 students in grades PK, K-2. Pretty amazing stuff that this group raised this amount of money. THANK YOU!!!

Students dig deep to raise funds for Haiti

$16,519.75 donation comes from Green Bay School District

By charles davis • • February 10, 2010

Photo (Evan Siegle/Press-Gazette)

Students from 19 schools across the Green Bay School District have contributed $16,519.75 to the American Red Cross Haiti relief fund.

Six other area schools raised $12,307 for Haiti relief efforts.

“I’m amazed by the giving nature of the children and how they care about people who are in need. It’s moving,” said Mauree Childress, director of development for the Lakeland Chapter of the American Red Cross.

The check presentation received loud applause from students in the gym at Chappell Elementary School, 205 N. Fisk St., and will be used to help provide more than 1 million earthquake survivors with medical kits, food, water and shelter. The island nation was hit with a devastating earthquake Jan. 12 that killed about 230,000 people.

Chappell has an enrollment of 280 students, and 76 percent of them are in poverty, teacher Kelly Schweda said. Despite their financial constraints, Chappell students raised $700 by selling jewelry and collecting coins.

Photo (Evan Siegle/Press-Gazette)

“They’re giving out what they don’t have,” Schweda said. “When you capture them at this age with that idea (of charity), they’re going to carry it on with them through their lives.”

Most of the students weren’t alive for the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and were too young to understand Hurricane Katrina, said principal Kristen Worden.

“They just want to help other kids involved, and many can empathize and personally relate to what they are going through — to some degree,” Worden said.

Green Bay East High School students Romello Wofford, 15, and Seth Kutzleb, 17, performed a rap song about empowering young people.

“We create the world we live in, Haiti is in need so let’s start giving,” Romello sang to the students. The tragedy has impacted young people due to the graphic images on TV and its close proximity to the U.S., Romello said.

Coleman, Crivitz, Marinette, Menominee, Oconto and Peshtigo schools held a competition to see which school could raise the most funds in any way possible: Coleman students bought duct tape to stick a veteran math teacher to a gym wall.

Jonathan Gor-Don, senior at Green Bay East High School, helped to raise more than $2,000 for Haiti relief. His “Just One” campaign urged each student at his school to donate 25 cents.

“It’s just a quarter and if everyone does their part, it can make a great impact. The influence of one is infinity,” he said.

Northeastern Wisconsin raises thousands to help Haitians after earthquake

By charles davis • • February 8, 2010

Northeastern Wisconsin has raised thousands of dollars for Haiti relief since the devastating earthquake hit Port-au-Prince on Jan. 12.

Schools, parishes, hospitals and nonprofits have all pulled together donations to help the disaster victims.

The organization Friends of Haiti has raised over $70,000 so far, with $14,000 already used for medication, transportation and a tent city to house survivors, said Joan Hogan, finance committee member. The Green Bay-based nonprofit was founded in 2000 and takes medical and developmental aid to the island nation.

“The area knows our work and believes in what we’re doing,” Hogan said.

President Barack Obama pledged $100 million in initial aid to Haiti.

More than 200,000 people were killed and more than 1 million are homeless, with thousands more injured, officials said. A 6.1-magnitude aftershock hit the island nation Jan. 20, and area officials said there is still a need for food and water.

Volunteers have increased since the tragedy, and Friends of Haiti is now collecting crutches for the injured, Hogan said. The organization is assessing the situation in Haiti to determine developing needs.

Northeast Wisconsin Technical College raised more than $3,000 from a musical fundraiser Thursday to benefit Friends of Haiti and collected $400 for toothbrushes and toothpaste.

Several other businesses and state officials have taken up donations for the cause.

The Catholic Diocese of Green Bay has raised $400,000 for Haiti relief, said Renae Bauer, director of communications.

“It speaks to the generosity people have when seeing the tremendous suffering the people of Haiti have gone through,” she said.

The diocese covers 16 counties in Northeastern Wisconsin, and the money was gathered by special parish collections and individual donations, ranging from $2 to $50,000.

All the money donated goes to Catholic Relief Services.

The Lakeland Chapter of the American Red Cross has raised $70,000 since the earthquake. All proceeds go to the International Response Fund for Haiti Relief.

A host of events donating to the local chapter included more than $6,000 from the Jan. 31 Musicians for Haiti event, $28,676 collected Jan. 23 from Haitian Crisis Day sponsored by Midwest Communications and Festival Foods and close to $7,900 from the Door County Auditorium Concert for Haiti on Jan. 23.

The Green Bay School District has raised more than $10,000 for Haiti relief, and that’s only counting half the schools, said district spokeswoman Amanda Brooker.

“I think it’s amazing the drive these kids have to help out … they really feel empowered that they can make a difference,” Brooker said.

Donations benefited the American Red Cross, UNICEF and Friends of Haiti.

Students at Green Bay East High School raised more than $2,000, and other schools raised funds by selling jewelry and food. Some elementary schools did Hats for Haiti and donated $1 to wear a hat at school.

Howe Elementary School in Green Bay held a penny drive that netted $1,415 for the Red Cross said Toni Davis, peer professional in special education. Two water jugs were filled with change and matched by an anonymous donor for a total of $2,830, she said.

The school has a large at-risk student body that skipped buying candy, yearbooks and videogames to help, she added.

“One little boy gave a speech and said he didn’t need a toy,” Davis recalled from the check presentation on Friday. “He said, ‘I don’t need it. It’s not important anymore.'”

‘Dreamers and Doers’ to honor 6 area women

The American Red Cross Lakeland Chapter is honored to have Mary Ann Berger, Volunteer, honored among these five other wonderful ladies at the “Dreamers & Doers” event.

Press-Gazette • February 7, 2010

ALLOUEZ — The Green Bay area branch of the American Association of University Women will host its 4th annual “Dreamers and Doers” events on March 13 and 14 at Heritage Hill State Park.

Historical tours, featuring reenactments of five women from Brown County’s past and led by local historian Mary Jane Herber, will run from 1 to 4:30 p.m. March 13 and 9 a.m. to noon March 14. Tickets for the March 13 tour and tea are $25. Tickets for March 14 are $20.

An awards luncheon is scheduled for March 14 at the Heritage Hill Education Center. Six area women will be honored: Jeanne Agneessens, Tracy B. Arndt, Mary Ann Berger, Maria Hinton, Joyce McCollum and Lucinda Roberts.

The cost to attend the luncheon is $35 and the deadline is March 5. Call Jill at (920) 592-9987 for a reservation form.

Tanker tips on M-35; Red Cross Assist Emergency Workers

American Red Cross Lakeland Chapter assisted the emergency workers on the scene of the accident. Four volunteers provided workers with coffee, cider, hot chocolate, snacks as well as sandwiches for lunch later in the day.

Posted: February 8, 2010, by NIKKI YOUNK, Staff Writer The Daily News

MENOMINEE – A semi-tanker crash in Menominee County on Saturday prompted the evacuation of eight residences and the shut-off of electrical power.

Menominee County Sheriff Kenny Marks reported that the accident occurred at 4:17 a.m. in Menominee Township.

The gasoline tanker from Klemm Trucking Company in Green Bay, Wis. crashed and rolled over on M-35 near Evergreen Road, Marks added.

The driver was transported to Bay Area Medical Center in Marinette, Wis., where he was treated and released.

Officials from the sheriff’s department are not releasing the driver’s name at this time.

Marks said that the tanker spilled approximately 200 gallons of gasoline.

Following the accident, eight residences along M-35 and Evergreen Road were evacuated.

Marks noted that a 1,000-foot perimeter was maintained for the safety of citizens. M-35 traffic was detoured to U.S. 41.

Also, officials shut off electrical power in the area, beginning at 6:02 a.m., in order to prevent the ignition of the gasoline from a damaged electrical pole.

At 6:24 a.m., another tanker arrived to pump fuel out of the damaged tanker, said Marks.

Residents were allowed to return to their homes and power was restored about five hours after the accident occurred.

Marks added that a cleanup operation was initiated to prevent groundwater contamination. Veolia Environmental Services and U.P. Environmental conducted a Hazmat assessment and cleanup of contaminated materials. Havelka Construction provided an excavator to dig up contaminated soil.

M-35 was opened to through traffic at approximately 2:45 p.m. Saturday.

The Menominee-Ingallston Volunteer Fire Department, Marinette Fire Department and Hazmat Team, Marinette and Menominee County Emergency Management, ACE Towing, Bay Area Paramedics, American Red Cross, and Michigan State Police assisted at the scene.

Nikki Younk’s e-mail address is

Local volunteer to help Haiti victims

Published : Sunday, 07 Feb 2010, 4:16 PM CST

Sturgeon Bay resident and Red Cross volunteer Shirley Senarighi is on her way to help the people affected by the massive earthquake in Haiti. Senarighi took a flight out of the Outagamie County Regional Airport Sunday afternoon.

“I think one of the things we need to do is listen,” Senarighi told FOX 11. While the relief effort continues in Haiti, Senarighi is heading to Miami. The retired principal and guidance counselor will work as a mental health counselor with people who were injured in the earthquake and evacuated to the U.S.

“There are a lot of great people who provide those immediate needs in regards to food or shelter,” Senarighi said. “But there’s a lot of emotional experience going on for these people as well.”

This is not Senarighi’s first deployment. In 2008, she traveled to Illinois to help victims of the Midwest floods. A few months later, she traveled to Texas to help victims of Hurricane Ike.

“I’ve felt on the deployments I’ve been involved with the people really looked for our assistance and support,” Senarighi said.

Senarighi added that victims of natural disaster typically go through the same emotions.

“The shock, the denial, depression,” Senarighi said. “There are a lot of different things that I think regardless of the type of disaster, the reactions are often quite the same and they’re very cyclical.”

But with the massive devastation in Haiti, Senarighi is not sure what to expect. But she is happy to help.

“We need to give them a chance to talk about what happened,” Senarighi said. “Then help reframe and think about what’s next. We need to help them think about what’s next.”

Senarighi is planning to return to Wisconsin in early March. Although depending on the needs of the people, that time frame could change. While in Miami, she will also be helping some of the relief workers returning from Haiti.

Area schools raise money for Haiti

Published : Friday, 05 Feb 2010, 6:22 PM CST

At Howe Elementary School in Green Bay students learned a little bit goes a long way.

“My students were so touched by the earthquake that they kind of came up with this idea that we should have a money drive,” said third grade Howe Elementary teacher Carissa Grasse.

The students raised more than $1,000 with a penny drive. That money was matched by an anonymous donor and given to the American Red Cross.

“It’s been so inspiring because our students don’t have a lot. A lot of them come from homes where they’re living in poverty,” said Grasse.

Students at Marinette High School have done their part to contribute in a big way, with only a little bit of time.

Every year the high school holds a winter games event and students get involved with a charity. Choosing to help out Haiti was a last minute decision. $3,300 was raised in less than a week.

“I think it’s great that teenagers can make so much of a difference and raise so much money,” said senior Matt Swiatnicki.

Green Bay’s Southwest High School students held a pep-rally on Friday with a focus on Haiti.

“We just kind of came down to the conclusion that we were going to sell t-shirts, and it just kind of evolved into this massive project,” said teacher Christy Faymonville.

Students designed “Project Haiti” t-shirts to raise money for UNICEF. They sold more than 800 shirts, and earned more than $5,000. Their pep rally also helped them raise an additional $264.

“One shirt can feed three families. It’s a really dig deal, we really are doing a great thing,” said Ashley Duda who helped organize the fundraiser.

The fundraising techniques among the schools may be different, but the result is the same. Help for those who need it.

The Power of What Youth Can Do!

Just One” – Green Bay East High School Haiti Fundraiser

In one week, students at Green Bay East High School raised more than $2,000 for the American Red Cross to help Haiti earthquake victims. The student-led campaign focused on kids making small donations to help out.

The girls at Chappell Elementary School also do their part!