Catholic Financial Life members show us what moves them

October 1, 2020 Blog, Events, Featured

Across southeastern Wisconsin this weekend, members of the Catholic Financial Life community will be walking, running, biking or rolling wheelchairs in their neighborhoods, through local parks or around school tracks to help kick off the inaugural Virtual Run Series for Special Olympics Wisconsin.

The team currently consists of 24 participants, ranging from Catholic Financial Life home office staff, agents, and customers who are committed to helping athletes continue to benefit from Special Olympics Wisconsin programming.

“We’re so fortunate in Wisconsin that we have so many volunteers who care about Special Olympics athletes and their families. It feels good to be a part of that.” – Catholic Financial Life Advisor and team captain, Karen Stiles

Even CEO Bill O’Toole has gotten in on the action. He and his wife, Karolyn, will be participating in all four weeks of the event and are actively fundraising. So far, the team has raised nearly $2,000.

All of this generosity is on top of the fact that Catholic Financial Life is already serving as Presenting Partner for the new event, which is a unique, fun and social distancing-friendly way for supporters to rally around the champions of Special Olympics Wisconsin – the 9,000+ athletes it serves.

It’s all par for the course for Catholic Financial Life. The community-based, not-for-profit financial services provider considers giving back to communities as one of the pillars of its organization. Through its network of chapters, members are encouraged to volunteer time or donate money to local causes, oftentimes with matching funds provided by Catholic Financial Life.

Volunteers from Catholic Financial Life with athletes and members of law enforcement at the 2019 Run With The Cops at UW-Parkside

“I reached out to all of my chapters about participating in the Virtual Run and not a single one turned me down,” said Catholic Financial Life Advisor and team captain, Karen Stiles.

Stiles also helped bring Catholic Financial Life and Special Olympics Wisconsin together through her relationship with TMJ4 and Vince Vitrano, who currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors for Special Olympics Wisconsin. Stiles volunteers with the station as director of their Call 4 Action office.

For her, the partnership was a natural fit. Catholic Financial Life is committed to improving the lives of people with special needs through its programs and services. They offer policies for people with special needs; offer fraternal benefits to members or their children with special needs to attend a summer camp, therapy program or purchase adaptive devices; and even maintain a charity fund dedicated to matching donations for fundraisers benefiting people with special needs.

Athlete Cindy Bentley (L) and Chairman of the Board of Directors Vince Vitrano (middle) receive a check from Catholic Financial Life’s CEO Bill O’Toole at their triennial convention in 2018, where Bentley was a guest speaker

In fact, the matching fund has previously been used to contribute to Special Olympics Wisconsin fundraisers like Run With The Cops and the Golf Classic that members of Catholic Financial Life have been involved in.

“We’re so fortunate in Wisconsin that we have so many volunteers who care about Special Olympics athletes and their families,” Stiles said. “It feels good to be a part of that.”



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