Special Olympics Wisconsin announced the addition of three new members to its Board of Directors. Milwaukee-area Special Olympics Wisconsin Athlete Rachel Frank, Robert W. Baird Investment Analyst Allie Mayer, and Village of DeForest Chief of Police Jim Olson assumed their respective positions on the SOWI Board late last year.
“Rachel, Allie, and Jim are incredible additions to Special Olympics Wisconsin,” Chair Marc Cadieux said. “Not only their professional experience, but also their collective desire to create opportunities for those with intellectual disabilities and commitment to inclusion falls right in line with SOWI’s mission and vision. We are thrilled to welcome them to the Board of Directors.”
Frank has been a Special Olympics Wisconsin athlete for 11 years, competing in basketball, bocce, and bowling. She also attended the USA Games as a member of Team Wisconsin in 2018. She brings a wealth of knowledge and experience with not only Special Olympics Wisconsin but also as Program Coordinator for Friendship Circle of Wisconsin—an organization that provides support, friendship, and opportunities to include people with special needs in our community.
“I get to work with others who have varying degrees of differing abilities like myself, and we don’t always have a voice,” Frank said. “I want to be the voice for them and help create change.”
Mayer joins the SOWI Board of Directors is an Investment Analyst at Robert W. Baird in Milwaukee. She has previous involvement with Special Olympics Wisconsin as a volunteer and recognizes the organization’s impact across multiple communities.
“Having grown up playing sports and participating in other recreational activities, the lifelong skills developed such as teamwork, communication, and wellness provided a foundation to succeed in my everyday life,” Mayer said. “There is no better feeling than working hard towards a goal with the ultimate feeling of accomplishment. I believe the mission of SOWI is to provide the athletes with those lifelong skills and sense of accomplishment.”
Entering the field of law enforcement in the City of Milwaukee, Olson is now the Chief of Police in the Village of DeForest. Throughout his tenure in uniform he has strived to develop strong partnerships and opportunities for families with intellectual disabilities and create a positive liaison for the ID and law enforcement communities.
“My goal is to continue the strong relationship between law enforcement and Special Olympics Wisconsin that enhances the spirit of competition, participation, and community for these brave athletes and their families,” Olson said.
The Special Olympics Wisconsin Board of Directors is made up of 25 members representing businesses, corporations, and community advocates throughout the state. Frank, Mayer, and Olson replace two outgoing board members Bill Jones and Vince Vitrano who combined for several incredible years of service to Special Olympics Wisconsin.