Sauk Valley

Leaf River volunteer named to Hall of Fame for Girls Scouts of Northern Illinois

(Left to right): Mary Jo Hare, recipient of the Hall of Fame Award, with former CEO of the Girl Scouts of Northern Illinois Fiona Cummings

DeKALB – Girl Scouts and volunteers from the Sauk Valley were among those who received awards from the organization’s northern Illinois chapter.

Mary Jo Hare of Leaf River was inducted into the Hall of Fame, recognizing her lifelong commitment to the Girl Scouts Movement. According to a news release, Hall of Fame recipients are advocates, volunteers and financial supporters of the organization.

The Girl Scouts of Northern Illinois made the presentation in April at the Barsema Alumni and Visitors Center at Northern Illinois University.

Others from the Sauk Valley recognized for their commitment to Girl Scouts were in the following categories:

Hillary Blevins of Morrison and Stephenie Olivas of Sterling received the Thanks Badge for their commitment, leadership and service at the council level.

Mary Ann Knoll of Dixon, who serves on the group’s historian committee, received the President’s Award. It recognizes surpassing team goals and those whose impact on the council is significant and measurable.

Brenda Bryant of Sterling and Karin Podolski of Chana each were presented with an Honor Pin for individual achievement in two or more geographic areas of service.

Four contributors from the area received Volunteer of Excellence awards for contributions to youth and adult members. They were Rebecca Koehler of Dixon, Stephanie Kuhn-Donald of Polo, Jennifer Robinson of Mt. Morris and Glenda Whitson of Freeport.

The Girl Scouts of Northern Illinois serves 16 counties and works with girls as they discover their strengths, encourages them to meet new challenges and find their voices. Girls Scouts helps its members make changes on societal issues most important to them.

To volunteer, reconnect, donate or join, visit or call 844-476-4463.