RACINE COUNTY – As the saying goes “no good deed goes unnoticed,” and Racine County Executive Jonathan Delagrave has taken notice.
Delagrave recently established the Racine County Executive Community Impact Award and gave it to Racine resident Ron Tatum during his budget address on Tuesday.
During the county’s job fests, Delagrave said Tatum worked tirelessly to help other residents get jobs.
“His critical thinking challenged our team to think differently about community engagement, employer relationships and truly meeting the needs of vulnerable community members,” Delagrave said. “His work on our job fests is just the tip of the iceberg on his community involvement.”
Aside from his volunteer work with the county, Delagrave said Tatum sits on the boards of the National Alliance on Mental Illness for Racine County, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Hunger Task Force and Feeding America Southeast Wisconsin.
Tatum’s day job is the director of supply chain at Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin and Metropolitan Chicago.
“This is something that I love to do, this is something I enjoy doing,” Tatum said. “I think helping people is the best exercise of the heart.”
In the gallery at the Ives Grove complex, Tatum’s wife and children watched him receive the award and he thanked them for allowing him to do his volunteer work.
“I am who I am because of them,” Tatum said about his children and asked them to stand up. “This is why your dad works so hard.”
Tatum held back tears as he expressed his appreciation for their support.
“When you do a lot of volunteer work it pulls you away from home sometimes, and I am blessed and fortunate to have kids that understand their dad is trying to make things better,” Tatum said. “That’s what it’s all about.”
Along with Tatum, Delagrave also recognized the work done by the Root-Pike WIN, which recently received a grant for $590,000 to restore wetlands at Cliffside Park, and gave them a community impact award.
“For 20 years, Root-Pike WIN has brought together municipalities, residents, donors and experts to improve the environment in southeastern Wisconsin and Racine County,” Delagrave said. “That spirit of cooperation has protected the watersheds in our region, improved water quality and made Racine County a better place.”
Bubbler for dogs
For those dog lovers that use the Karen Nelson Dog park at Quarry Lake Park, the 2019 proposed county budget includes funds for a “dog water fountain.”
During the budget address, Delagrave told the board about a $20,000 donation from Mariann Hansen, who goes to the park often, that plan to be used for the new bubbler for dogs and resurfacing the parking lot. The county plans to add $10,000 to this project.