The inductees are:
Community Service - John “Jack” Muldoon
John “Jack” Muldoon, 77, of Arlington Heights, is a true “community servant.” Muldoon first honed his community skills in politics and volunteer service after moving to Hoffman Estates in 1959. After an executive career that took him all over the country, he returned to the Chicago area and settled in Arlington Heights. Muldoon, who lost both his parents while he was in high school, was raised by an aunt and uncle. He built on his unfortunate experience by always sustaining a positive outlook. After serving in the Army, then getting an accounting degree, he attended Harvard Business School and was selected to attend the Army War College. Since retiring in 1996, he has served on committees and councils and created educational programs on investment strategies. Muldoon is an active volunteer at the Arlington Heights Senior Center, the Arlington Heights Library and Wheeling Township.
Back to top
Education - Nancy Germann
Nancy Germann, 75, of Mt. Vernon, began her teaching career, in 1960, after graduating from Mt. Vernon Community College. As a single parent working full-time, she took night and summer courses at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale to complete her bachelor’s degree. Germann taught third grade at Belle Rive Grade School until she retired in 1993. After 33 years in the classroom, she returned as a substitute teacher, music teacher and currently works as a special education aide. She is active with retired teachers’ programs, is vice president of Club 53 at Fifth Third Bank, serves on the board of directors at Comprehensive Services and has served on the music committee for Cedarhurst Chamber Music. She plays the oboe in community bands, sings in a choir and plays piano at nursing homes and for church services. Germann’s community service includes participation in the annual Easter pageant and work with a soup kitchen.
Back to top
Labor Force - Patricia DiFiore
Patricia DiFiore, 70, of Zion, has more than 28 years experience in developing and managing senior housing facilities. She works on each project, from the concept stage to physical completion, to ensure a high-quality lifestyle for seniors so they may remain independent. She also works with youth developing numerous programs for troubled teens, and was one of the first single mothers in the state become a licensed foster parent. DiFiore has worked as a social worker. She and her husband, a clinical psychologist, helped to develop chemical abuse programs to assist people dependent on alcohol and drugs. After moving to Chicago, she became involved with housing through the Council for Jewish Elderly, which led to her passion for supportive living. DiFiore is credited with the creation, building and opening of a pilot supportive living facility for the State of Illinois, in 2001, called Rush Barton of Chicago, which has grown to 118 facilities across the state.
Back to top
Performance & Graphic Arts - Robert Berns
(Posthumous inductee) Robert Berns, 79, of Morton Grove, graduated from the Ray Vogue School of Commercial Art and worked as an advertising manager and art director for several sporting goods companies including Brunswick Corporation, Wilson Sporting Goods, MacGregor Sporting Goods, PGA Golf, Ram Golf and Northwestern Golf. His revolutionary golf equipment designs won numerous national awards. In 1969, he started his own advertising agency and continued to specialize in sporting goods before branching out into other industries. Berns won so many awards for his woodcarving designs and techniques that he wrote an instructional book about it, entitled Patterns for Woodcarving. Berns was a winner for awards from the Graphic Arts Council of Chicago, the recipient of a national offset-lithography award and was cited for outstanding achievement in advertising by the Chicago Federated Advertising Club, among other accolades.
Back to top
For more information on the Senior Illinois Hall of Fame, contact the Illinois Department on Aging Senior HelpLine.