Dr. Jon Neidy Honored with 2023 Hoot Gibson Award

(L-R) Board Chair Robert Gates, Dr. Jon Neidy, President Jennifer Zammuto

Dr. Jon Neidy is the 2023 Hoot Gibson Award honoree for community volunteerism in support of the Heart of Illinois United Way.

Jon’s time with the HOI United Way began in 2006 with his service on a Fund Distribution Committee.  From developing outcome benchmarks, drafting applications and scoring rubrics, training partner agencies, and engaging follow HOIUW volunteers, Jon has been instrumental in the foundational work of the allocation process.  Jon’s commitment to HOIUW was elevated in 2022 as he joined the Solution Council and co-chairs the Education Impact Area.  In this role, Jon is currently leading a Fund Distribution Exploratory Committee to evaluate the HOIUW fund distribution process, determine if it sufficiently aligns with HOIUW strategic goals and objectives and community needs, and suggest improvements and/or process redesign as necessary.

Jon is a graduate of MacMurray College with Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education and a graduate of Bradley University with a Masters in Curriculum and Instruction.  Education is one of Jon’s passions as he obtained his PH.D. in Higher Education Administration from Illinois State University.  Since 1998, Jon has had successful tenure with Bradley University holding various prestigious positions.  In October 2022, Jon accepted the position of VP of Student Success at Illinois Central College and to support students in all services, processes and systems at ICC; including outcomes assessment and improvement.

Jon’s approach to leadership and volunteering includes a profound belief in goal setting and the assessment of learning. He is adept at fostering a strong sense of community and presenting data in ways that help organizations change. He thinks of himself as a staff-engager, order-bringer, and experience-designer.  Jon not only shares his talents with United Way but has incorporated his strengths in community service work with Goodwill and Acorn Equality Fund – an LGBTQ+ scholarship and grant fund.

Most evident of Jon’s skills and talents is his ability to develop relationships with others.  Jon is a person you want in the room and on your team!  His active engagement, energy, and enthusiasm is having a lasting and positive impact on our community.

About the Hoot Gibson Award

Since 1985, the Heart of Illinois United Way has recognized a volunteer who spends countless hours working without fanfare to help others. Our annual Hoot Gibson Award is presented in memory of Horace J. “Hoot” Gibson, Jr. who pursued his goals in a quiet, determined matter, caring little if others knew of his accomplishments. In addition to serving on our health committee and as board secretary, Hoot’s hard work helped the Heart of Illinois United Way transition our allocation process to address prioritized needs. His leadership is the basis of how we continue to fund vital needs today.