view of te lake at sunrise

Our Foundation

We are a non-profit that has served Chicago and it's older residents for over 160 years.

The Admiral at the Lake Foundation

Chicago’s Oldest Nonprofit Organization Serving Seniors

Dating back over 160 years, The Admiral at the Lake has maintained a reputation for being a person-centered, values-based community with the highest standards. In 2005 The Admiral at the Lake Foundation was created. The mission of the Foundation is not only to support The Admiral at the Lake residents and staff, but to help support activities that benefit the seniors in our community.

A Gift of Caring

Assisting Chicago’s Seniors

When you give a gift to The Admiral at the Lake, you show your support of a 160 year legacy of caring for Chicago’s seniors. Gifts are used to care for residents and to assist residents who can no longer cover their monthly service fees due to no fault of their own. Gifts enhance our sense of community and assist with daily operations.

Ways of Giving


An outright gift in the form of cash or securities permits an immediate federal income tax deduction. Gifts of long-term appreciated securities may offer additional benefits.

Memorial Gifts

You may wish to make a contribution in honor of someone of significance to you and the community. Perhaps it is a friend, neighbor or someone who has served the community as a board or staff member. All gifts will be acknowledged and

Corporate Matching Gifts

Many corporations match gifts to charitable institutions made by employees; some will match the gifts of employee spouses and retired employees as well. Contact your personnel office for information about your employer’s matching-gift program.

Planned Gifts

These are bequests, gifts made over a period of time, and are structured to meet your specific financial objectives. They offer significant advantages of favorable income, as well as savings on capital gains and estate taxes. Planned gifts allow donors to transfer cash, real estate, or other assets to The Admiral at the Lake.

Foundation Board of Directors

Our Foundation board comprises civic leaders and accomplished professionals.

Sarah Shirk

Sarah Shirk

Sarah Shirk earned an MPH with a concentration in gerontology from UIC’s School of Public Health and a BA from Swarthmore College. Her career has focused on health outcomes in the medical rehabilitation sector and academic research in the public health sector. Sarah has collaborated professionally with Kendal affiliates since her early career while working in community outreach at the Philadelphia Orchestra. She is a member of Oak Park Friends and active in regional Quaker communities. For hobbies, Sarah enjoys singing in the Chicago Community Chorus and is training to compete in national Masters Track & Field Competitions.

Gus Noble

Gus Noble is President of the Illinois Saint Andrew Society (CHICAGO SCOTS & Scottish Home).  Gus worked for the British Consulate General Chicago for 7 years developing UK-US trade and investment. Gus graduated from Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management. Gus serves on the Boards of Rotary Club of Chicago (ROTARY ONE), the world’s first Rotary Club. Gus is a core member of the Chicago Cultural Alliance and is a member of the Chicago Council for Global Affairs. Gus’s interests include playing music and golf and Newcastle United Football Club.

Mike Biver

Mike has made his career in the nonprofit sector, developing an expertise in the legal requirements, governance, fundraising, and management of nonprofits.  After working in the nonprofit sector for a number of years, Mike received his J.D. from the University of St. Thomas School of Law in Minneapolis, MN and is licensed to practice law in Illinois. Mike’s interests revolve around food and farming reform.

Jordan Shields

Jordan is a graduate of Bowdoin College and the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern, and he is a Managing Director with Juniper Advisory, a Chicago-based firm that assists hospital boards with mergers, acquisitions and other forms of partnerships. He serves on the Board of the House Theatre of Chicago and the Chicago Council on Global Affairs Selection Committees for the Gus Hart Fellowship and Emerging Leaders Program.

Gwen Cohen
Board Member

Gwen Cohen, Morgan Stanley Wealth Advisor and FVP, has dedicated her career to serving the financial needs of high net worth individuals, multi-generational families and small business owners. Most recently, she was recognized as a 2016 MAKER at Morgan Stanley, an award that honors game-changing women leaders within the firm and the industry. Gwen has been profiled in a variety of media outlets, including the Chicago Sun-Times, N’Digo, Chicago Defender, Chicago Metro News, Black Enterprise, Ebony magazine and WTTW’s “Chicago Tonight”. In 2019, Gwen received the Egretha Award for financial empowerment. A strong believer in “giving back,” Gwen is a Board Chair of Roosevelt University’s College of Performing Arts, WTTW’s Advisory Council and the Goodman Theatre Spotlight Society Advisory.

Michael Traynor
Board Member

Michael Traynor has over 40 years of diverse experience with business and not-for-profit organizations. He spent 24 years at Harris/Bank/Bank of Montreal, holding executive positions in strategic planning, corporate finance, risk management, credit training and commercial lending. Mike formed a crisis management/consulting practice that served not-for-profit and small business clients and co-founded the Chicago Microlending Institute. Its mandate was to expand microlending in Chicago and expanded to include other U.S. cities.

Wally Verdooren
Board Member

Wally Verdooren has devoted his entire professional career to the nonprofit sector, primarily in the areas of development and external relations for a variety of higher education, healthcare, and human services institutions.  He also has many years of experience as a board member and volunteer leader with several organizations offering arts, education, faith-based, and justice related programming to local communities.  Wally earned his BA from Augustana College in Illinois, MA in religion from Yale University, and MA in English/creative writing from the University of Illinois at Chicago.  When not at work, Wally enjoys playing tennis and riding his bike through neighborhoods and paths in the South Suburbs where he lives.