Stephen D. Peterson is a campaign associate at the Heart of Illinois United Way, responsible for coordinating the efforts of GENeration United (GEN U), a group of emerging young leaders who address the needs of the community through giving, volunteering and workplace leadership. He also works with a range of companies on their United Way workplace campaigns, managing fundraising efforts for OSF, Methodist Medical Center, ATS, PricewaterhouseCoopers, UPS and other organizations.
When he joined the Heart of Illinois United Way in 2011, Peterson hit the ground running, taking over management of numerous events for the organization. Under his leadership, one of the United Way’s major campaigns doubled the amount of dollars it raised, while committee memberships within GEN U have tripled. He has spearheaded the formation of strategic partnerships with iBi magazine and other groups, and has been vital to launching the BoardSERVE training program for young leaders.
An active volunteer, Peterson devotes his free time to a range of community service organizations. For three years, he and his wife have participated in Paws Giving Independence, training three dogs to be adopted as service dogs for individuals with disabilities. He devotes time to projects at organizations like Crittenton Centers, Tri-County Urban League and the Hult Center for Health Education, serves on the greeting committee at Imago Dei Church, and is a past board member of Heart of Illinois AAU Girls Basketball. Active in community theatre, he has been involved with productions at Eastlight Theatre, Peoria Players Theatre and Corn Stock Theatre, and was recently elected to the board of ArtsPartners of Central Illinois.
Named the 2011 Outstanding Graduate Student in Bradley University’s College of Education and Health Sciences, Peterson was an integral member of the research team that performed the latest community assessment for the United Way. He is currently an adjunct professor at Bradley, teaching leadership in nonprofit management. iBi