Wednesday, May 02, 2007
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Brian Cook one of 10 Illinois young people to be honored by the Illinois Jaycees on Saturday           Send a link to a friend

[May 02, 2007]  DECATUR -- At their statewide general meeting on Saturday, the Illinois Jaycees will honor the top 10 young people from the state of Illinois, including Brian Cook, NBA basketball player from Lincoln. The special honors program will be at the Holiday Inn in Decatur.

Each year the Illinois Jaycees and the Illinois Junior Chamber International Senate select and honor 10 outstanding men and women between the ages of 21 and 39 from across Illinois. The Ten Outstanding Young People are selected on the basis of achievements in a number of areas, including personal improvement, financial success, economic innovation, social improvement to major contemporary problems and philanthropic contribution, as well as government and volunteer service. Past winners include Gary Fencik, Chris Zorich and Bill Self.

Each of the individuals honored will receive a special medallion and photo plaque from the Illinois Jaycees. The other honorees, their profession and the town from which they were nominated are Adam Alonso, social services, Oak Park; Pat Fitzgerald, head football coach at Northwestern, Evanston; Emily Gage, minister, Chicago; Bert Johnson, high school music department chair, Orland Park; Richard McCoy, curator, Decatur; Elizabeth Noe, event professional, Palatine; Paul Petty, sheriff and coroner, Pittsfield; Paul Rickey, teen program manager, Lombard; and Amy Wenz, tax attorney, Glen Ellyn.

"These individuals exemplify all of the best qualities of young leaders as well as a commitment to helping others," said Denise Lenz, president of the Illinois Jaycees. "They have changed their communities and the world around them. On behalf of the Jaycees and our sponsors Caterpillar and AmerenCilco, we congratulate these winners and challenge them to continue their quest to be the best at what they do."

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There are nearly 2,000 Illinois Jaycees in 100 chapters throughout the state. Illinois has the second-largest number of Jaycees of any state in the United States. The Jaycees provide individuals between the age of 21 and 39 the opportunity to develop personal and leadership skills while serving their community.

Every year, each chapter in the Jaycees conducts numerous programs to serve the community and accumulate funds for operation of the chapter and community donations. Included in these projects are Fourth of July festivals, Christmas tree sales, haunted houses, garage sales and other projects that benefit the community and help raise funds.

For further information on the Illinois Jaycees, membership or any of their sponsored events, write to the Illinois Jaycees Service Center, 6405 Canadian Cross Drive, Springfield, IL 62711; call them at 217-529-5379; fax them at 217-529-5293; e-mail them at; or visit

[Text from news release received from Illinois Jaycees]

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