Vital Life Foundation

Kathy Levee • Director

Kathy has been volunteering since high school—working with Special Olympics, helping community groups, reading to pre-school children. “For me, it has never mattered how little or big the project is,” she says. “At the end of the day, it’s just gratifying to help someone else in a time of need.”

Kathy credits her parents with instilling the philosophy of paying it forward. “They taught me that when you do good things for others, good things come back to you,” she says, “so I’ve tried to live by that my entire life. She was the first person hired when Marquis Companies opened its doors in 1989—and has been instrumental in it's success. As vice president of operations, she’s in a unique position to ensure that all employees are aware of Vital Life and of opportunities to support its partners.

She’s perhaps the perfect Foundation cheerleader, since it’s already connected to what she calls “the most gratifying thing I’ve done in my adult life.” As one of the first Vital Life initiatives, Kathy had the idea to distribute backpacks filled with school supplies to more than 500 frontline employees working in long-term care facilities. She secured donations from corporations and coworkers, scoured local stores for the best prices, and prepared the parcels for delivery to their grateful recipients.  “It was an unforgettable experience,” she says, “and showed the kinds of partnerships that are possible.” Her dream is for the Foundation to achieve national recognition for creating synergy between seniors and society. “It’s amazing to see what happens when we help our residents give back,” she says. “It creates value and hope in their lives, and returns them to a place they’ve probably given up on long ago.”

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