Ellen Bernacki - Executive Director

Ellen's story begins in the great state of Michigan. A Detroit native, she attended the University of Michigan and majored in Communications and Psychology. While business-minded, Ellen is a musician at heart. She played in the Michigan Marching Band for four years in college, which speaks to her killer calves. And while her experience in the mitten state shaped her positive and hard-working attitude, her experience in Chicago has contributed to her many accomplishments.

Ellen is currently a media planner at Publicis Health Media, where she has won awards for her work in the advertising industry. She has been the ED for Volunteering Untapped Chicago since April 2018, and is responsible for all the unruly board members on this page. When Ellen isn't #voluntbeering with VU, she's eating at new and trendy restaurants... or listening to the Hamilton album.

Written by Erik Peulicke

Chrissy Swartz - Director of Partnerships

She hails from Chicago, yes born & raised. Loves dark beers and rosé. Works at Rotary International in Evanston and feels her calling is nonprofits. When she's not working or drinking, she's volunteering and drinking with VU. She also volunteers with the tutoring program at Chicago Lights and is on the board of the Rotaract Club of Chicago. Her spirit animal is a cat because she can catnap anywhere. She spends her free time fake-booking international trips, and camping/hammocking when the weather allows. If you're visiting any of the following places soon: Chicago, Seattle, Iowa, North Carolina, and Dublin, Ireland - ask her about them, she's lived in all of them!

Written by Bree Wiethorn

Ankit Chandola - Director of Finance

Ankit graduated in 2014 from the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business with a Bachelor's of Business Administration. Currently, he works as a Investment Associate at Deerpath Capital Management. As the Director of Finance for Volunteering Untapped, his responsibilities include maintaining a budget and raising money to support our efforts. Aside from maintaining our budget, Ankit’s most important job for VU Chicago is to bring us some dope beats to our events. Thanks to him, we don’t #voluntbeer in silence!

Written by Theresa Osunero

Theresa Osunero - Director of Events

Theresa is a born and bred Chicagoan, who certainly knows her way around the city. Got a trendy new bar or restaurant you think is "hip" and "under the radar?" Theresa has already been there and can give you a full synopsis of how fun their scene is and how delicious their farm-to-table, small plates are. She attended the University of Illinois, earning her Bachelor's in Community Health, and Rush University, earning her Masters in Health Systems Management. When she's not at the hottest new Chicago spot, Theresa can be found ruling the healthcare world, spending time with friends, or traveling.

Written by Ellen Bernacki

Erik Peulicke - Director of Marketing

And, lo, on the 13th day of February, Erik Peulicke was born. Originally from the golden state of California, Erik decided that warmth did not suit him and decided to trek northward, into the great beyond, to a town called Ann Arbor. There our hero attended the venerable University of Michigan where he became a proud member of the Michigan Marching Band, wooing the ladies with the sweet silky sounds of his saxophone. He graduated in 2014 with a B.A. in Communications and is now a BA at communicating things.

Erik currently works as a Manager in Data and Analytics for DigitasLBi in Chicago. He achieved his greatest accomplishment in 2016 when he became a founding board member of Volunteering Untapped Chicago where he is the Director of Marketing. Erik is also an avid food lover--except for ketchup he seriously hates that stuff.

Written by Neil Claracay