Melanie Buhle graduated from University of St. Francis in 2010 with a B.A. in Psychology. Now the Director of Advancement with CASA of Will County, Melanie advocates for abused and neglected children in the juvenile court system.

“Together we act as the eyes and ears of the Judge to make sure the children and their families receive services to help them overcome their pasts, and we also act as the voice of the child in court,” Melanie said.

mealaniebuhleHappily married with four children, Melanie recently gave birth in March to her fourth child. She attends community college part-time in pursuit of a certificate in Sign Language Interpretation. When she is not working, in school or caring for her family, Melanie acts as a mentor for two Junior high school girls in the Give Back program.

When asked about the impact of her Give Back scholarship, Melanie spoke not only of the financial stability provided, but also of the vast network of peers that have supported her and also excelled in their career pursuits.

“Recently, CASA (where I work) has partnered with Give Back to allow eligible foster children to attend college debt-free as well,” Melanie said. “I am over-the-moon excited about this, because it means our kids will receive an opportunity that CASA alone would have never been able to give them. I look forward to seeing how this amazing opportunity benefits the lives of these kids!”

Earlier this month, the Give Back staff was honored to present Melanie with the Illinois Mentor of the Year award at the annual Give Back Student Dinner in Homer Glen, IL.

“We could not possibly be more amazed by how Melanie gives, and gives, and gives,” said Steve Cardamone, Executive Director of the Give Back Midwest Regional program. “Working with CASA of Will County is such a testament to the size of her heart.”