Marlene LewisALTON - Marlene Lewis is celebrating a lifetime of service.

Lewis, one of the YWCA’s ten 2024 Women of Distinction, will be honored at the Y’s annual gala for her commitment to the community. Through her career and her retirement, she has remained a pillar in the Alton area. Lewis' giving nature is perfect for today, Easter Sunday.

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“You just feel like your life has a purpose, and it’s really rewarding,” she said. “It’s really rewarding to be able to help people.”

Lewis serves on the Salvation Army Board, the Alton Women’s Home Association Board, the Alton Main Street Board and the Vintage Voices committee. In her career, she worked in community relations and development at Alton Memorial Hospital. She spent a lot of time fundraising and writing grant requests, and through her efforts, the hospital was able to establish funds for breast cancer patients and others.

“When I moved into the fundraising role, I raised funds for the hospital, but I also became more aware of the needs in the community and the people in our community that could use some help,” Lewis remembered. “It was really great to be able to help that way.”

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Lewis has enjoyed becoming involved with groups like the Alton Women’s Home Association, which awards grants to organizations throughout the community. She also loves history, and this inspired her to join Vintage Voices. Twenty-five years ago, she helped out with Alton Main Street and is happy to return to their organization. But one of her biggest passions is the Salvation Army, and she remains a committed board member.

To this day, Lewis is constantly thinking about how she can help and connect people. She encourages anyone who wants to get involved to think about their own interests and what they enjoy, then let these passions guide them in their community service.

“There’s really no limit to the number of volunteer opportunities that are available to people. They just need to take that first step,” she said. “When I worked, I had a lot of people that volunteered and helped me to accomplish the things that I accomplished in my job. So I know how important volunteers are to an organization, so it’s nice to be able to volunteer for a change.”

Congratulations to Marlene Lewis on this recognition!

This is the tenth in a series of articles about the ten 2024 Women of Distinction. For more information about the YWCA’s Women of Distinction Gala, visit the official Facebook event page.

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