Lincoln-Way East Key Club Sponsor honored by Will County
Wednesday, September 5, 2018

On Tuesday, September 4, 2018, Project Acclaim’s secretary, John Zalanka, presented Key Club Sponsor Matt Jordan with the Reverend James E. Allen Award for Service to the Community. The award was presented in the board room of Lincoln-Way Central among community members during the monthly Team Asset meeting.

The James E. Allen Award for Service to the Community aims to highlight those who make a positive impact in Will County. According to the Project Acclaim website, nominees must meet eight criteria:

• Selfless devotion of community by direct action
• Live in the Joliet or Will County region
• Performed action above and beyond the usual call of duty
• Action has community-wide impact
• Improved the life or well being of individuals
• Action noted promotes Project Acclaim Vision or Mission
• Action enhanced the best interests of the community
• Actions observed can be singular or repeated events, not necessarily associated with a long term activity or career

“I have a soft spot for Key Club Sponsors. I know what they do,” said Zalanka. “I know what it takes, and I know a good program when I see one…It [Key Club] gets the kids engaged in this community outside these walls; it gives them a larger scope of what the needs are out there.”

Jordan has served as Key Club Sponsor for 11 years between his time at Lincoln-Way North and Lincoln-Way East. Last year’s program hosted 90 students, and this year’s number of participants is expected to grow. Jordan was nominated by Forest Preserve District of Will County Volunteer Services Supervisor, Renee Gauchat, who has worked closely with Jordan while guiding Key Club members in the staffing of local forest preserve programs, events and projects.

“It really is just a reflection of the kids,” said Jordan. “You get a good group of kids who want to serve and they can really take charge of their own service; I just point them in a right direction. It’s really good simply to see them grow in their leadership and see them get involved in the community.”