Melissa Carlsen Schmitz
I’ve known Melissa for almost 10 years now, and have been continuously impressed with her dedication towards helping those who need it the most, both behind the scenes and on “the front lines.” You see, Melissa has spent many years tirelessly championing for many groups and organizations who need volunteers to help make a difference. If there is a cause Melissa believes in, she will not hesitate to step up and fight for it. Frankly, I have no idea where she gets the energy to volunteer her time and energy to all of these different causes. Currently, Melissa volunteers for the NEIL Area Agency on Aging, the Humanitarian Service Project, the Holiday “Meals on Wheels” Celebrity Chefs Brunch (as the “Event Chair”), the Lombard Citizen’s Police Academy Alumni Association and Adopt-A-Highway clean-up in honor of her late father. This is in addition to being the President of Apple Concrete Coring Co., working full time to keep her business running smoothly and her customers happy.
If you look at Melissa’s resume, you’ll notice a pattern in her advocacy/volunteer life. It almost always relates to the elderly, underprivileged, animals (domestic and wild), and her community. Any of these categories is monumental enough, but Melissa has, and still is, tackling each of them in an effort to make positive changes. She is a no-nonsense type of person, and lets her actions speak for her when working for any cause that needs fighting for. Melissa has delivered meals for “Meals on Wheels”, offered children the opportunity to read stories to her beautiful pooch named Bella, assisted her local police department with their “Shop with a Cop” and food pantry committee, volunteered at special town events including the huge “Lilac Day Parade”, and so much more. This is just one woman, working to help those who need it the most.
In addition to all of this volunteering work (as well as running a full time business), Melissa has begun making huge efforts to help the Monarch butterfly populations recover in our area by caring for the “babies” (eggs & caterpillars) in her own home. Not only that, she has helped other people learn how to do this as well, and provides encouragement and support to anyone who wants to make the effort. I’m not at all surprised that she has begun tackling this cause because, of course, she has also volunteered for Willowbrook Wildlife Center in an effort to help the center continue to provide assistance for injured or orphaned wildlife. Again, one woman working to make a difference every day.
I am so impressed with Melissa’s commitment and dedication to what she values the most, and am grateful that she let me highlight her for this series. Melissa is certainly a Woman of Substance, and is someone you should all know.