About Us

Our Mission

The HEAR Scholarship Foundation’s mission is to provide financial and mentoring support to Chicagoland High School graduates of need, who have demonstrated academic excellence, commitment to community, and highest moral character in pursuing their dream of a college education.

The HEAR Board of Directors


Chris Eigel – HEAR President

Board member since 2012, Board President since 2018.
Resides in Hartland, WI. Previously from Glenview, IL. Graduate of the University of Illinois and holds an MBA from the University of Chicago. Now retired, Former president/CEO of Koenig & Strey (now KoenigRubloff Berkshire Hathaway) Prudential Rubloff real estate brokerage firms. Currently Chairman Emeritus of Berkshire Hathaway Home Services (BHHS) KoenigRubloff Realty Group.
Email: chris@hearfoundation.org

Joe Lamberti – Vice President

Involved with HEAR since its inception.
Resides in Lake Forest, IL. Graduate of Miami University in Oxford, OH with a BA in Finance and an economics minor. Private Wealth Advisor and Managing Director in the Merrill Lynch Private Banking and Investment Group. Holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation and is a Certified Financial Planner certificant.
Email: joe@hearfoundation.org

George Silca – Secretary/Treasurer

Board member since 2015.
Resides in Glenview, IL. Graduate of Indiana University with a BS in Business Administration and an MBA from Loyola University. Began career at IBM, Chicago. Joined The First National Bank of Chicago, continuing through mergers with NBD, Bank One and Chase. Involved with treasury management, energy lending and product management. Retired as Vice President at JPMorgan Chase. Frequent guest instructor for the Mortgage Banking Association.
Email: george@hearfoundation.org


Bob Browne

Board member since 2017.
Resides in Glenview, IL. Graduate of University of Wisconsin with an engineering degree and of Notre Dame with a JD. Specializes in Intellectual Property Law. Recognized by Chambers, Leading Lawyers and Super Lawyers. Served on Intellectual Property Law Association of Chicago and The Non Resident Lawyers Division of the State Bar of Wisconsin. Also served on nine local boards (schools, associations, clubs).
Email: bbrowne@hearfoundation.org

Greg Cadichon

Board member since 2018.
Resides in Buffalo Grove, IL. Graduate of Illinois State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Kinesiology. Founder and Director of Rebound Fitness & Rehabilitation in Northbrook, IL and Rebound Athletics (operating primarily in Asia). National Athletic Trainers Association approved provider of continuing education to sports medicine professionals. Patented two athletic braces.
Email: greg@hearfoundation.org

Karoline Eigel – Feeds Co-Chair

Board member since 2016.
Resides in Glenview, IL. Graduate of Ithaca College with a BA in Broadcast Journalism and a vocal performance minor. Senior Vice President at MB Real Estate, oversees marketing for Murphy Development Group. Previously a principal at MarketHooks Consulting.
Email: karoline@hearfoundation.org

Stephen Hall – Fundraising Chair

Involved with HEAR since its inception.
Resides in Evanston, IL. Graduate of Butler University with a BA in Journalism. Student athlete (football) for four years. Also holds FINRA Series 7, 6, and 63 licenses and Retirement Income Certified Professional designation (RICP) from the American College. Regional Vice President at Athene. Previously Regional Vice President at Genworth Financial. Started career in financial services at Deutsche Bank, Chicago.
Email: steve@hearfoundation.org

Patricia Kelly – Mentoring Chair

Board member since 2018.
Resides in Park Ridge, IL. Graduate of University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a BBA in Marketing. Now retired, career spanned 20 years in Marketing and Management at AT&T. Past President of St. Paul of the Cross’s Home and School Association. Chairperson of the school’s annual fundraiser. Also past President of the Faith Hope & Charity Church Guild.
Email: patti@hearfoundation.org

Dr. Raymond Pollina DDS

Board member since 2008 (past Treasurer, President, Scholarship Chair).
Resides in Glenview, IL. Graduate of University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Illinois Dental School with a DDS and Endodontic Residency. Past owner of endodontics practices in Park Ridge, Elmwood Park and Chicago. Now retired. Proudly served in the Military. Past President of the Illinois Association of Endodontists.
Email: ray@hearfoundation.org

Michael Spaniak

Board member since 2018.
Resides in Northbrook, IL (raised in the suburbs of Chicago). Graduate of University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a BA in Accounting and Northwestern University School of Law with a Law degree. Executive Vice President and General Counsel for Evergreen Bank Group. Previously served as Director and President of Latin American Medical Providers, a not-for-profit organization.
Email: mike@hearfoundation.org

Dan Strzalka

Board member since 2015.
Resides in Glenview, IL. Graduate of the University of Iowa and DePaul University College of Law with a Juris Doctor Degree (JD). Partner at the Chicago office of Nixon Peabody. Has been practicing law specializing in commercial finance and other general corporate transactional matters since 2003.
Email: dan@hearfoundation.org

James Weiss – Finance Chair

Board member since HEAR was founded.
Resides in Vero Beach, FL (born and raised in Chicago). Graduate of Marquette University with a BA in Psychology and Wharton School with an MBA. Served in the U.S. Army. Previously Partner at Stein Roe & Farnham in Chicago, Opened own firm, Weiss Capital Management in 2002. Upon retirement, was Senior Portfolio Manager at Segall Bryant & Hamill, Chicago. Previously worked at State Street Research & Management and IDS Equity Advisors. Involved with numerous non-profit organizations since the 1970’s and currently a member of the Board of Trustees for Marquette University.
Email: jimw@hearfoundation.org

Robert Wise – Scholarship Chair

Board member since HEAR’s inception, currently Scholarship Chair (past President) Resides in Glenview, IL. Graduate of University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh with a degree in Business Administration. Entire career (46 years) at Morgan Stanley. Retired in February 2019 as Executive Director-Wealth Management. Professional designations and distinctions include: President’s Club, Financial Planning Specialist, Barron’s Special Report The Top 1,000 Advisors, FIVE Star Wealth Management (5 years). Serves on the board of the Wentcher Foundation.
Email: bob@hearfoundation.org

Len Wislow – Development & Marketing Chair

Board member since 2018.
Resides in Naples, FL & Chicago, IL. Graduate of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a Bachelor of Science degree. Former CEO of The BECO Group, a Professional Staffing firm for 40 years. Now retired.
Email: len@hearfoundation.org

James Ziemba – Feeds Co-Chair

Founder of The HEAR Foundation.
Resides in Glenview, IL. Graduate of Michigan-State University with a degree in Packaging Engineering.
Made a career for himself in the investment business, specializing in commodities, and went on to found Ziemba Capital LLC. In 2006, helped found The HEAR Foundation to pursue commitment to efficiently invest in smaller charitable projects that make a measurable difference in individuals’ lives. Believes that the best way to change Chicago, and the world, for the better is through education.
Email: jim@hearfoundation.org

  Justin Ziemba

Board member since 2017.
Resides in Chicago, IL. Graduate of University of Colorado at Boulder with a degree in English Creative Writing. Runs Ziemba Capital LLC commodities trading in Chicago.
Email: justin@hearfoundation.org



Vera-Pollina-picVera Pollina

HEAR Executive Director


Lucy Burne

HEAR Marketing & Communications Manager


Kristen Kelly

Director of Development


Leah Brajer

Administrative Assistant


For general Information about the scholarship, please email: