Bob Behounek – 2019 Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award Finalist

More about Bob and his cause: Bob has volunteered for 13 years at Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana, which has the mission to care for families of children with complex medical needs by providing comfort, compassion and a sense of community. Specifically, the organization supports children and families at five area houses, three family rooms and two Ronald McDonald Care Mobile units. Bob is an expert artist; he has been a race-car letterer, sign painter and pin-striper for 50 years; he utilizes that background to advocate on the charity’s behalf to get donations from local artists, body shops, paint suppliers and storage facilities. In 2007, Bob started the Chicago Brushmasters, a volunteer force of 50 artists that has raised approximately $850,000. Bob has been a NASCAR fan for 56 years. His favorite drivers these days is Kyle Larson. Funds received from winning the Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award would cover the costs of nearly 1,200 nights in one of the area houses, for families in need.

In Bob’s words: "I think we all have different things in our lives that change us. I know I have. I realized there are a lot of people who have gone through difficult times in their lives. There are families that struggle to have a place to stay when their child is in a hospital, sometimes possibly dying. From my perspective, I’ve had this great opportunity to take my passion for art and turn it into something really positive. It’s great to help people and help a great cause along the way. If I win this award, I will dedicate it to my mother. She taught me how to help people. She taught me not to just think of myself but think of other people."