Salute to Sara celebrants included L to R: Julianne Buck (President, Alliance of Illinois Community Foundations), ECF Vice Chair Diana Cohen, former ECF Board Chair Kendal Gladish, Sara Schastok, and ECF Board Chair Mike Brody. Photo by Genie Lemieux/Evanston Photographic Studio

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Approximately 250 guests attended the Salute to Sara celebration to honor Sara Schastok’s legacy as Evanston Community Foundation’s (ECF) first President and CEO on July 9 at the Evanston Art Center’s new location at 1717 Central St.

ECF supporters thanked Ms. Schastok for her 15 years of service and accomplishments on behalf of the community of Evanston.

Event co-chairs were Judy Kemp, Judy Aiello-Fantus and Eleanor Revelle. Former ECF board chair Ms. Kemp said, “Sara has been a passionate advocate for the Evanston community and a remarkable first leader for the Foundation. She has provided a listening ear and wise counsel to nonprofits and community leaders seeking to increase capacity and develop partnerships for the common good. It’s impossible to do justice to someone who has given so much to ECF and the community – but we hope by bringing together people who have worked closely with Sara over the years, she might glimpse the depth and breadth of her legacy.”

A highlight of the evening was the announcement of the newly established Sara Schastok Fund, an endowed fund created to build permanent assets to address Evanston’s ever-changing needs. Board vice chair Diana Cohen said ECF supporters have pledged more than $1 million to date in cash gifts and valu-ation of will provisions for legacy gifts to the fund in Ms. Schastok’s honor.

Upon her retirement, Ms. Schastok will serve ECF in the new role of Senior
Philanthropic Advisor.