Congratulations are in order for Academy Vice President Patrick Bittorf, who was named as the Bulls’ Walmart Community Playmaker for November at a Chicago Bulls game.

When Patrick and his wife were invited to attend a Bulls game, they thought it was for a charity engagement event. Instead, Patrick was surprised during a timeout when it was suddenly announced on the jumbotron that he had won the award. The special moment was marked by confetti cannons and a visit from the spirit squad the Incredibulls to congratulate him.

The Community Playmakers program was built to thank and recognize members of the community who are dedicated to improving the lives of others and being a force for good. This award recognizes the hard work Patrick and our Academy team do each day, particularly around the Hoops to Homework program, on which the Bulls and Mercy Home partner each year.

“It’s humbling,” Patrick said, reflecting on the award. “I think it’s a lot more about the Home and the partnership we have the Bulls.”

“It’s nice to see the Home get recognized for the work that we do.”

In addition to partnering with Mercy Home on our Hoops to Homework program, the Chicago Bulls support our educational programming through a generous grant each year and provide various opportunities throughout the year to involve our young people in sports. We are grateful for the generosity of the Chicago Bulls and their sponsors in supporting the young people entrusted to our care.

And, of course, we are so proud of all Patrick does to help our kids succeed, both academically and in life.

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