SYCAMORE – The Oncken Family Fund has been established through the DeKalb County Community Foundation.
This new donor advised fund will align with the charitable interests of the Oncken family and provides a tangible way for them to participate in philanthropy as a family.
Riley and Heather Oncken were married in June 2013 and have embraced DeKalb County as their home since. They now live in Sycamore with their four daughters Mia, Quinn, Hattie and Rowan.
Riley was born and raised in Sugar Grove and moved to Sycamore in 2002. He is a 2004 graduate of the Northern Illinois University College of Law. He started his own firm in 2012, The Law Office of Riley Oncken P.C., where he and his fellow attorneys serve clients in DeKalb County and throughout northern Illinois. Riley has a desire to serve others and shares his time in the community fulfilling a variety of past and present volunteer and public service positions. A few of those include the Sycamore Rotary Club, the NIU College of Law Alumni Council, Republican Precinct Committeeman in Sycamore, the DeKalb County Board, the Spartan Food Pantry Board, and the Sycamore Education Foundation.
Heather was born and raised in Yorkville and graduated from the Waubonsee Community College Nursing Program in 2002. Shortly after graduation, she was hired as a labor and delivery nurse at Rush-Copley Hospital in Aurora. Heather’s desire to serve others has taken a fun twist in recent months as she and a business partner have taken on a new endeavor to create a mobile App focused on generosity. The App aims to help people be more intentional in their giving by focusing on personal interests, preferences and important life dates. She also has begun a series of podcasts called “Connecting in the Chaos,” which focus on helping people build and grow more meaningful friendships.
When asked about the creation of the family Fund and the “why” behind it, the Onckens responded, “In spite of all that happened in 2020 with the COVID-19 pandemic, we wanted our family to end it on a positive note, one of hope and promise of good in the future. The new fund allows us a hands-on approach to teach and model generosity to our children.”
“As a family, we’ve been blessed and we want to pass on that blessing to helps others,” Riley Oncken said in a news release. “A few years ago one of our daughters asked to make a lemonade stand so she could raise money to give to the local homeless shelter. We did that together and she experienced great joy in being able to raise and donate the money to Hope Haven. That’s the mindset we want to instill in our kids, to be generous, to hold money loosely, and to try to meet needs where we see them.”
The Onckens are excited for the annual opportunity to sit down as a family of six and discuss where to direct the grant dollars. A few of their charitable interests include providing for the needs of moms and babies, food insecurity, and advocating for children and the underserved populations of DeKalb County.
Donations to any fund at the Community Foundation, including the Oncken Family Fund, can be made online at dekalbccf.org/donate, or by mail to the DeKalb County Community Foundation, 475 DeKalb Ave., Sycamore, IL 60178. For questions or to get started creating your own charitable Fund, contact Dan Templin at 815-748-5383 or firstname.lastname@example.org.