Lynda Given has served on the IWS Board of Directors for over 10 years. During that time, she has served as both Vice President and President of the Board. She currently serves as chair of the Campaign for a Healthy Tomorrow, an initiative to boost the IWS endowment fund. Her generous contributions have led to the successful implementation of the CHAT program, our organizational name change, and program and service updates.
Thanks to encouragement from longtime friend Elizabeth Hennessy, Lynda was introduced to philanthropic board service and grew eager to serve the community in a new capacity. “It’s true, board service is a huge responsibility but when you’re doing it with a friend, and when you are doing it for such an important cause, it never really feels like work. If you are looking for an initiative that will grab you by the heartstrings, this is it.”
Lynda knows all too well the importance of having access to preventive health care and community services, especially for immigrant families: “My grandparents immigrated from Slovenia. They were very poor and there were no services available for immigrant families in the small West Virginia town where they lived. They had to figure everything out on their own. I know it wasn’t easy.” Lynda continues: “All you have to do is spend a little time in the lobby at IWS on any normal day. Watch as families walk into the clinic together because each member is interested and invested in the health and wellbeing of their child or relative- and you’ll be hooked too.”
Over the years, Lynda has learned more about the unique needs of the Logan Square community and the importance of bilingual providers alongside integrated services. “I am proud to have been a part of the CHAT campaign. The services they provide are so important.” Most importantly, is the experience that Lynda has gained by being a contributing IWS Board member. “I have gained so many friends. I have had the opportunity to work together with people whom I consider to be close friends. I have enjoyed the camaraderie we’ve shared. We have met and faced challenges together, and I believe we are all better for it.”
In the years to come, Lynda is looking forward to being a part of the Board’s attention to strategic planning and big-picture matters affecting the organization. “I would like to see us focus on ways to move the mission forward and ensure that IWS is around for the next 107 years”.