One of the key objectives of the Fox Valley chapter is to support local students through scholarships to the UW. In 2020 the chapter was fortunate that our major fundraisers were held before the pandemic lock-down.
- In January we held a silent auction in conjunction with the annual Red Smith Sports Awards Banquet. Featuring items from UW, and Wisconsin professional sports stars including Giannis Antetokounmpo, the auction raised needed chapter funds for scholarships. Thank you!
- In March, just before the pandemic lock-down, the chapter held our largest fundraiser ever, a sold-out performance featuring Charlie Berens of Manitowoc Minute fame. If you are interested, you can catch up with Charlie on YouTube or his podcast on your favorite streaming platform.
- In May, we awarded 7 students from Calumet, Outagamie, Waupaca and Winnebago counties a $2,000 scholarship each to the UW. We were not able to present the awards in person (an enjoyable activity for chapter members). Hopefully later in the year we can celebrate with them on campus.
- Throughout the year we appreciate the Bucky Business partners and sustaining donors for their ongoing commitment to the Chapter and local students.
- Finally in November, the Fill the Hill campaign saw 18 donations, along with a generous match supporting local scholarships.
Getting together with alumni and all Badger fans to celebrate and enjoy all that the University of Wisconsin–Madison represents is another goal of the Fox Valley chapter. As you can imagine, 2020 was just a little different. Gone were the in-person events and basketball and football game watch parties. Our first-ever bus trip to a football game had to be canceled. Like many other aspects of our personal lives, we had to shift to the virtual world.
- In March, the first event that had to be cancelled was our annual Founders’ Day celebration. We were looking forward to hearing from Dr. Aaron Bird Bear MS’10, director of tribal relations in the UW’s Office of University Relations & Division of Extension presentation: Our Shared Past and Our Shared Future. Founders’ Day also included the presentation of our 2020 Badger of the Year winner, Stephen Seifert, BA’72, JD ‘75
- In May, the chapter sponsored our first ever virtual event, a Trivia contest. The 25 questions included everything from name this tune, to historical UW and sports questions. See if can answer: During the 2019/20 school year, what UW sports team finished second in the NCAA tournament for their sport?
- In place of our annual student send send-off picnic new students were invited to participate in a virtual student welcome held by the Wisconsin Alumni Association. In conjunction with that event the Fox Valley Chapter joined chapters all across the country in distributing almost 150 Welcome signs to students all over our chapter area. Keep showing your Badger pride!
- Then in December we hosted a beer tasting with the Stone Arch Brew Pub. After a brief history we had an entertaining discussion on the beer making process and sampled four of their special craft beers. (Stay tuned for our first 2021 event – Wine and chocolate, anyone?)
The WAA: Fox Valley Chapter has a long history of sponsoring Badger Cafés, and Wisconsin Idea events, both of which bring UW professors and experts to the Fox Valley to provide presentations and discussions that are open to the public. While only one in-person event was held, online resources and virtual events took over.
- In February our Badger Café was a timely topic: The State of the 2020 presidential election, presented by Professor & Director of the Elections Research Center, Barry Burden. Who would have guessed back then that even now in December the Presidential election would still be one of the major news items.
- With the pandemic, additional in-person events were quickly replaced by the very successful UW Now Livestream series. Sponsored by the Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association you can catch up with past presentations on Youtube.
- And to provide us with the latest information, the WAA has created a website with links to articles and stories on the great work UW-Madison is doing related to the COVID-19 virus