American Red Cross of the Illinois River Valley welcomes new board member

ROMEOVILLE – The American Red Cross of the Illinois River Valley on Friday announced the appointment of Ragan Freitag Pattison to the organization’s board of directors. Board members are chosen based on their commitment to the Red Cross mission as well as their individual expertise, experience and willingness to serve the needs of the board.

Pattison is the director of state and local government market for Wight & Co. She was one of the first women to graduate The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina, earning her bachelor’s degree in political science with a concentration in American government.

After graduating The Citadel, Pattison returned home and began her early civic career serving as alderwoman for the city of Wilmington.

During that time, she worked for former U.S. Rep. Jerry Weller, R-Streator, handling constituent concerns and legislative matters within the district.

She also worked for former state Rep. and Minority Deputy Leader Brent Hassert, R-Joliet, as his legislative liaison running the district office.

In 2005, she entered Mississippi College School of Law in Jackson, Mississippi.

During her time in law school, she served on the committee for the law school chapter for Habitat for Humanity, where they raised money and built new homes for the victims of Hurricane Katrina.

Pattison graduated from law school in 2008, and that year, she also was admitted to practice law in Illinois. Pattison had a successful career practicing criminal defense, family law and governmental law with Kavanagh Grumley & Gorbold LLC. Currently, she is a licensed attorney with Gwendolyn J. Sterk and the Family Law Group P.C.

While practicing law, Pattison ran and successfully won two elections, serving as a Will County Board member and commissioner for the Forest Preserve of Will County. Pattison served as chairwoman of the Will County Capital Committee, where she began working with Wight & Co. She continued working with Wight & Co. as she transitioned into the chief of staff role for the Will County Board.

Pattison’s relationship with Wight & Co. was instrumental as the Will County Courthouse project began to kick off, sparking a series of capital projects for Will County.

“The Red Cross does its best work because local people volunteer their time to help their community,” said Brian McDaniel, executive director of the American Red Cross of the Illinois River Valley. “Pattison is a talented leader who makes an impact every day. She has a strong commitment to the Red Cross mission, and we are fortunate to have her join the chapter board. Without board members like Ragan, backed by the organizations she works with, we wouldn’t have as strong of an organization as we do.”

The American Red Cross of the Illinois River Valley always is welcoming new board members. Those interested in volunteering as a board member or community volunteer leader should contact McDaniel at 815-370-6729 or brian.mcdaniel2@redcross.org.

The American Red Cross of the Illinois River Valley serves more than 1 million people in five counties in northern Illinois, including Kankakee, Will, Grundy, Kendall and La Salle.

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families.

The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For information, visit www.redcross.org/ILRiver or follow on Twitter @RedCrossIL.