What is the Young Professionals Board?

The purpose of the Pilot Light Young Professionals Board (YPB) is to promote, raise awareness, and fundraise for Pilot Light’s food education programming in Chicago. Members will support Pilot Light in cultivating relationships in the community and engaging others via social media, in social functions and events, and by volunteering at Pilot Light events.

The YPB comprises the board at large and elected members of the leadership team.  The leadership team is a small group of dedicated individuals who are stakeholders and committee leaders for the YPB as a whole; they hold the primary responsibilities of organizing the YPB fundraising and outreach efforts.  The YPB board at large members and the leadership board collaborate to support the YPB’s fundraising and outreach efforts.

In the past, the YPB has hosted multiple events to support Pilot Light (and our upcoming event: Falling for Food Education is THIS Thursday, October 21st from 5-8pm at The Charleston Bar):

For the first in-person event since 2019, the YPB hosted a happy hour at The Charleston Bar who graciously donated proceeds from cocktails for the evening. Tickets were free and the event also featured the delicious tapas and bocadillos (Spanish sandwiches!) of Pilot Light friend and chef James Martin of Lincoln Park’s Bocadillo Market. Raffle prizes included wine, a bottled Gold Fashioned from our friends at Apologue, apothecary items and a gift card from Paperish Mess, gift cards from The Vig, and spin classes from Spynergy in Wicker Park. Members reconnected with friends and raised over $2,000 in support of Pilot Light’s food education programming! Thank you to everyone who turned out for the event and all the partners who made the event possible!
In their first ever virtual event, the YPB hosted a vinyasa yoga flow from Christina Wu, hot toddy cocktail making demo with Fatima Butler of Rooted in Hospitality (featuring Apologue curated drink kits), and a presentation about how Pilot Light pivoted during the COVID-19 pandemic to create Pilot Light Anywhere: PreK-12 free e-learning food education lessons on our Food Education Center.  The event was a way to connect virtually with peers, relax, and learn more about the work being done in Pilot Light classrooms! Thank you to all our partners for a lovely holiday event!
In collaboration with Disney II Magnet Elementary school teachers and students and pastry chef Dana Cree, students designed and marketed popsicles for Pretty Cool’s Logan Square shop. Two students’ popsicles were selected and Chef Dana visited the classroom to share samples and talk about how “fantasy” flavors like Bubblegum are created and built from flavors found in nature.
YPB member Carolyn Sutter at the coloring station with a young artist
The YPB paid homage to Pilot Light’s very first fundraiser, the 2013 Pilot Light Back to School Block Party, by hosting a block party for families, board members, staff, and the West Loop/Fulton Market neighborhood benefiting Pilot Light’s food education programming. The event included beer, a raffle, music from local musicians, an assortment of games and activities, and food items from local chefs and restaurants.
A guest eagerly digs into a surprise course (goat!) prepared by Chef Q.
This past December, we celebrated the end of 2019 for the Pilot Light YPB with our friends and families this past December. Chef Q and her team created an incredible family-style dinner with local ingredients, while guests played bingo and enjoyed wine and beer!

Get involved and join our Young Professionals Board!

Please fill out this short survey and our Membership Chair will be in touch with you! We meet monthly on the second Tuesday of the month virtually from 6:30pm to 7:30pm. Contact our President Natalie Hall at nataliemh3@gmail.com and/or our Membership Chair Mary MacLaughlin at mmary09@vt.edu for more information!

Wondering what’s coming up? Check out our events page for upcoming events!

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