Thursday, September 22, 2011

Fishing for Charity

Every year during the winter holiday season, SmithBucklin employees use a number of creative techniques  to raise money for the worthy causesIn 2010, SmithBucklin presented a check for $32,000 to Kate Maehr, Executive Director & CEO of the Greater Chicago Food Depository. One of the most popular activities is an auction that features unique products and services such as "movie night" at the CEO's house, in-home cooking lessons, babysitting, etc. Using an online eBay-style website, employees bid and outbid each other, and all of the proceeds go to the food depository.

Team sport

Since 2007, three SmithBucklin executives (Bret Kelsey, Mark Thorsby and this blog's author) have participated in the auction by donating a fishing expedition on Lake Michigan. The auction winner and two of his or her colleagues join the three sponsoring executives for a fun afternoon searching for salmon and trout on Lake Michigan. After five hours of fishing near Waukegan, Illinois, the catch is cleaned (by the captain) and divided up among the participants. Some of the fillets are taken home for grilling and others travel to the Boat House Pub & Eatery in Kenosha for smoking. Click on 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 to see the complete set of images for each expedition. Below is the charity winner and a "fishing highlight" image from each year.

August 24, 2012
With Captain Kyle aboard the Spendthrift III.
Best Fish of the Day
Charity Auction Winner: Pam O'Brien

September 11, 2011
With Captain Kyle aboard the Spendthrift II.
"Fish, it's what's for dinner"
Charity Auction Winner: Kevin Baliozian

September 2, 2010
With Captain Jerry aboard the Spendthrift
I caught this one
Charity Auction Winner: Cynthia Narut

August 21, 2009
With Captain Jerry aboard the Spendthrift
Charity Auction Winner: Andy Soltys

July 10, 2008
With Captain Kyle aboard the Spendthrift II
Let's Put This Into Perspective
Charity Auction Winner: John Hausoul

July 27, 2007
With Captain Jason aboard the Finseeker*
Charity Auction Winner: Katie Paffhouse 
*2007 was the final outing with Captain Jason. His fishing boat, the Finseeker sank to the bottom of Lake Michigan on May 30, 2008 during a freak, microburst storm. Captain Jason and his six customers waited out the storm in the cold Lake Michigan water before they were rescued by a U.S. Coast Guard helicopter. Click here to read more about the storm and survivors from the Daily Herald. Below is video of the Finseeker wreck made by divers a few months after she sank.   

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