Olivia Harlan Dekker
Inspired by helping people, especially families dealing with a life-changing diagnosis, Olivia teamed up with CCFF. She was drawn to the hands-on care and involvement offered by CCFF to families dealing with childhood cancer. Olivia aims to be as productive as she can with fundraising efforts knowing that money can help ease the financial burden of this disease. She remains motivated watching the organization grow through the kindness of generous donations coming in from the community and across the country. Olivia has many accomplishments of which to be proud, including sports reporting for ESPN, winning Miss Kansas Teen USA in 2010, and graduating from the University of Georgia with honors in 2014.
Simply put, Sarah-Beth likes making a difference in the lives of people experiencing a difficult time. She draws inspiration from knowing CCFF helps lift some of the burdens felt by local families impacted by childhood cancer. She understands battling cancer is likely one of the biggest challenges they will face, and helping them find strength in each other and in themselves is something Sarah-Beth finds deeply rewarding. “Families battling pediatric cancer are some of the toughest and most inspirational people I’ve ever met,” she says. “After spending time with families, all I could ask myself is what more can I do to help them?” Some of Sarah-Beth’s recent accomplishments include being a Future 15 Award Winner - Class of 2017 and a Post Crescent Good Neighbor Feature in June of 2018. She is also involved in various roles in organizations such as Harbor House, Special Olympics, Warming Shelter, Community Christmas, My Team Triumph and the United Way.
Supporting families impacted by pediatric cancer is important to Dave because of his own experience with the disease. Dave’s son, Nathan, was three years old when he was diagnosed with leukemia. “I know what the financial burdens are to have a child on treatment,” says Dave. “CCFF attracted me as an organization because of their mission to help with these financial burdens.” Dave is inspired by the perseverance his son showed during treatment and believes he is making a difference in the lives of CCFF’s families because he understands the challenges they are going through. He is thankful he can help others feel less isolated while battling the disease.
Hesper remembers the helplessness she felt when a friend’s daughter was diagnosed with pediatric cancer. The family had no idea where to start when it came to getting help, and there were few resources at the time. Now Hesper stays motivated with CCFF knowing she is helping families who are facing similar challenges. “I love that we can help people even if it is just a little bit,” Hesper says. “I try to imagine what some are these families are going through and the strength it takes for them to keep their families together. I admire them.” Inspired by her children, Hesper is passionate about family, friendships, and helping children. In her free time, Hesper also volunteers at her children’s schools and other local organizations.
Jennifer is a life-long heath care professional with over 25 years of experience as a registered nurse. She has personal and intimate experience with pediatric cancer and the impact that is has on parents and families. Jen’s son Jake was diagnosed with a rare and aggressive form of cancer and fought it courageously before his passing just after his 9 th birthday. Jen was thankful for the support that she and her son’s Jake and Cole received from the community and friends. She became interested in CCFF to have the opportunity to give back to the community and provide to others the support that she was shown. She enjoys cooking, travelling, camping, fitness, and spending time with family and friends
including her now adult son Cole and husband Patrick.
Alex knows what it's like to hear the gut-wrenching words “your child has cancer.” Her son was diagnosed with eye cancer at just two months old, and that experience drew Alex to Children’s Cancer Family Foundation. Her desire to give back, in the same ways her family was supported in their darkest days, keeps her focused on the mission of CCFF. Inspired by her rambunctious son, now 7, and her beautiful 10-year-old daughter, Alex uses her passion in visual arts and the written word to take challenging stories and present them in creative ways. A marketing and communications professional for more than10 years, Alex graduated from UW-Oshkosh in 2010 with a degree in Speech Communications and earned her Master of Business Administration in 2021 at the same institution.
After raising money for CCFF through his photography, Seth found himself volunteering for CCFF. Inspired by the mission of CCFF and the stories of the families they help, Seth knew that he wanted to help make a difference in any way that he can. Serving as a board member, Seth wants to use his talents with digital media and photography to not only tell the story of CCFF but the families they help to serve as well. A full-time marketing professional of more than 5 years, Seth enjoys telling a story through the lens of his camera.
Matt grew up and attended school in Winneconne, graduating high school in 2002. Matt currently reside in the Town of Vinland with his wife Rachel, of nearly 15 years. Together they have 2 daughters, Sadie (10) and Nora (7). Matt is the Facility Manager for Covanta Environmental Solutions in Oshkosh, which was formerly Chief Industrial Services of Winneconne. He has worked there the past 10 years. Matt attended college at UW-Eau Claire and UW-Oshkosh and studied Biology. In his free time, Matt enjoy spending time with his family and friends, camping, hunting, visiting National Parks and traveling with his family. They have a small hobby farm where we raise animals, some of which their children show at the County Fair. Their family is heavily involved in the Winnebago County Fair. Matt currently serve as the Vice President on the Board of Directors for the Winnebago County Fair Association. Matt also serves on the Planning Commission for the Town of Vinland. Matt has known Sarah-Beth's family nearly his entire life. Her Brother is one of Matt's best life-long friends and former college roommate. Matt & Rachel learned about CCFF through Sarah-Beth after Nora was diagnosed with Leukemia in 2019. They experienced first hand just how truly amazing of organization it was and always knew in the back of our minds that some day they wanted to be a part of it.
Rachel grew up in Omro on a hobby farm with her parents, a younger sister and a younger brother. She graduated from Omro high in 2004. Rachel began working as a medical transcriptionist which she did from home for many years while her daughters were babies. She now lives in Vinland with her husband of almost 15 years, their two daughters, Sadie who is 10 and Nora who is 7. They are slowly building our hobby farm in the home her husband was raised in. They love raising their animals for the kids to show at Winnebago county fair where Rachel is also serving as the superintendent of the Winnebago county Goat Project. They love to camp all over with their family and friends during the summer months. Rachel has a wonderful job in the trauma center at ThedaCare Neenah where she is a licensed EMT. Matt and Rachel joined CCFF after their daughter Nora finished her chemo treatment for acute lymphoblastic leukemia. They knew their journey for cancer wasn’t over just because the chemo was. CCFF had given them so much and they wanted to pay it forward by helping other families going through the cancer process.
After learning more about CCFF through mutual friends, McKenzie found herself volunteering for CCFF events committee. Inspired by the mission of CCFF and the stories of the families they help, McKenzie knew she wanted to help make a difference in any way that she can. Serving as a board member, McKenzie wants to help spread awareness and tell the stories of the families impacted by CCFF.
Aaron is the proud owner of a thriving small business, Crafting Coating, since 2013. Aaron has worked to build and grow the business, contributing to the local economy and giving back to the community. In addition to being a successful business owner, Aaron is deeply committed to giving back to the community. This commitment is exemplified through active roles on the boards of his local church and the Boys and Girls Club of Oshkosh. Through these roles, Aaron actively contributes to community development and youth empowerment, fostering growth and positivity within Oshkosh and beyond. During challenging times, when Aaron's daughter faced a difficult cancer diagnosis he started both biking and running, to raise funds and awareness for cancer research and support organizations. This incredible effort showcases his dedication to family and the community, using personal experiences to fuel a drive for positive change.
Amanda is a devoted stay-at-home mom. Her journey as a dedicated mother took a significant turn when her daughter was diagnosed with cancer, transforming her into an advocate for her child's health and well-being. This experience ignited her passion for contributing to causes that support children and families facing medical challenges. In addition to being a caring and devoted mother, Amanda is invested in homeschooling her two daughters. Amanda also loves to travel with her family to broaden her children’s horizons and make lasting memories. Passionate about cooking, Amanda enjoys creating delicious meals that bring her family and friends together. Through teaching her children the art of cooking, she instills important life skills and a love for healthy, homemade food.