Dear Special Olympics Illinois community,

As we bid farewell to the first quarter of 2024, I find myself filled with immense pride and gratitude for all that we have accomplished together. These initial months have been a testament to the exceptional spirit and dedication within our organization and I am ecstatic to continue our journey forward.

We are already three state championships into the year, having seen competition so far at Winter Games in Galena, the State Basketball Tournament in Bloomington-Normal, and the IHSA Unified Basketball Tournament in Champaign. The hard work and bravery exhibited by our athletes and Unified partners throughout these state events – and at regional competitions – have been nothing short of inspiring.

In February, 14 athletes completed the Athlete Spokesperson class in Bloomington. As Athlete Spokespersons, these individuals will serve as ambassadors for Special Olympics Illinois, sharing their stories, advocating for acceptance and respect, and educating others about the transformative power of sport. I am excited to see how their voices will resonate far beyond the confines of our organization, inspiring others to embrace diversity, overcome challenges, and champion inclusivity.

In addition, this quarter saw the joining of communities in the 2024 Law Enforcement Torch Run Polar Plunge for Special Olympics Illinois. We can’t thank you enough for your support! From law enforcement agencies, to schools, to corporate teams, to families and friends – because of your dedication to our cause, thousands of athletes will have the critical funds necessary to participate in life-changing programming.

As we look ahead to the next quarter, I am excited and optimistic for what lies ahead. With a calendar full of upcoming events like Spring Games, Lewis University Plane Pull, Cop on a Rooftop, and Summer Games, I have no doubt we will continue to make strides toward a more inclusive future for all.


Pete Signature

Pete Beale-DelVecchio
President & CEO, Special Olympics Illinois