Joe Nolan: Making Good Things Happen at Mercy Home
Forming helpful friendships
Since joining the board more than a decade ago, Nolan has been involved with countless Mercy Home events from black-tie galas to intimate gatherings. But there is one celebration that Nolan looks forward to every year more than all others.
“The academic awards event has always been a really fun night for me,” Nolan said. “To see all the kids cheering and pulling for each other, and happy for each other to get awards – the excitement of that night has always been really fun.”
Nolan cherishes the relationships he has formed through his work at Mercy Home, including bonds he has formed with our coworkers and with his fellow board members. But since becoming chairman, he has worked especially closely with our president and CEO, Fr. Scott Donahue.
“One of the great things in life has been for me to be able to work with Fr. Scott and to become friends with him – he is really a special person,” Nolan said. “I kid and call Fr. Scott ‘Padre’, but there’s no better name for him than Father. He is a father figure to so many youths, and I truly am honored to be his friend and to help him in any way I can in his role as CEO of Mercy Home.”
“And I’m very proud to work with so many great people who give their time and their efforts every day to make the home a better place and to serve the youth”
Homegrown and giving back
Nolan is a lifelong Chicagoan – he was born and raised on the city’s South Side and completed his education locally as well. He earned his bachelor’s degree in accounting with high honors from the University of Illinois and his MBA from the University of Chicago.
When he reached a point in his own life when he was able to give back and help others, Nolan decided to make an impact locally. His goal? To give kids from the South and West sides of the city a better chance at succeeding.
Nolan has certainly made a difference in the city of Chicago. In addition to his involvement with Mercy Home and its Board of Regents, he also serves on the board of directors for the Chicago Children’s Choir and is a trustee of the University of Chicago Medical Center.
Here at Mercy Home, the results of his hard work are clearly visible to all. With every child who visits a campus, moves into a dorm, or receives their college diploma – the Dream, Believe, Achieve! program has played a significant role. When every Mercy Home fundraising event builds on the success of the previous year in generating the resources we need to help kids, Nolan’s leadership on the board is unmistakable. Every time a board member makes possible a life-changing opportunity for a young person in our care, Nolan’s legacy at Mercy Home deepens.
“It’s really been one of the most rewarding and fulfilling things I’ve done with my life, to be chairman,” Nolan said. “And I’m very proud to work with so many great people who give their time and their efforts every day to make the home a better place and to serve the youth.”
We are forever grateful for Joe Nolan’s time as our chairman of the board. His passion, energy, and dedication have been contagious – and our board is stronger than it’s ever been.
And as it turns out, good things do happen after 11 o’clock at Ringside.