Happy Birthday Jessica!

It’s March! Time to welcome spring, celebrate Irish heritage (St. Patrick’s Day), Polish heritage (Pulaski Day), International Women’s Day and turn our clocks forward. It’s also a month to commemorate cultural and faith observances of Holi, the Hindu festival of spring, Lenten practices for Christians, Ramadan for Muslims, and the Jewish holiday of Purim.

It’s also time to celebrate Jessica’s Birthday. She would have turned 51 today. So please raise a toast and remember an incredible daughter, sister, friend, aunt, advocate, and colleague who brightened our lives with her love, kindness, loyalty, optimism, and compassion.

We are pleased to share that, in honor of Jessica and her birthday, we are issuing grants to two organizations committed to serving others in ways that we think would make Jessica proud. She was a fearless advocate for justice for vulnerable children and their families and spent her career speaking out to earn second chances for those whose voices aren’t heard. “No” was not a word in Jessica’s vocabulary when it came to responding compassionately to young people in need.

To honor Jessica and say “yes” to carrying on her spirit of service, the Jessica Bryar Legacy Fund (JBLF) will issue the following grants:

  • $5,000 to Illinois Justice Project – promoting criminal justice reform, building safer communities and making the justice system more equitable. www.iljp.org
  • $5,000 to New Life Centers – building leadership for young people and their families through restorative justice, safe spaces, and life-on-life relationships www.newlivescenters.org

These donations are possible because of your generosity to JBLF. More than $40,000 has been donated by friends and family members since the fund was launched in 2019. $33,000 in grants have been issued to community organizations in Jessica’s name, ensuring her lasting impact on the people and causes she cared about so deeply.

If you wish to make a birthday gift in Jessica’s memory, click here to make a donation to the Jessica Bryar Legacy Fund. Thank you for your generous and loyal support. Please contact Bob Eichinger ([email protected]) if you have any questions or need help making a gift.

Be sure to mark your calendars for Memorial Day, Monday, May 29, 2023 and watch for details about how you can participate in and support the Ridge Run in Beverly. Be a part of Team Jessica!

With gratitude,
The Jessica Bryar Legacy Fund planning committee


Team Jessica
To be part of supporting Jessica’s legacy, you can make a donation online. You can also make a check out to The Chicago Community Foundation, with Jessica Bryar Legacy Fund in the memo line, and send to The Chicago Community Trust at 225 North Michigan Ave. Suite 2200, Chicago, IL 60601.
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