As a civil engineer at Burns & McDonnell, Adam Blumstein shapes the infrastructure of our region. He works with residents and local municipalities to keep properties safe and water clean by managing and resolving storm water and flooding. 

“I’ve always had an interest in building things and being hands-on. And this position has allowed me to connect with the community that we serve every day,” Adam said. 

Similarly, as a United Way donor, Adam also strengthens Chicago neighborhoods. 

Adam is a member of Young Leaders United (YLU), United Way of Metro Chicago’s affinity group for young professionals. Their support makes United Way’s work in the community possible by fundraising and serving our neighbors through volunteer projects.

Three years ago, Adam joined YLU after learning about United Way through his company. Burns & McDonnell is a long-time corporate partner of United Way. Since, Adam’s recruited his wife to join and formed a committee to grow YLU’s membership. Together, they organize volunteer events and happy hours to engage new people and inspire them to help build a stronger Chicago region. 

“United Way is a great organization to be a part of because they have their hand in so many different areas that they can make a large impact across communities,” Adam said. “They help support basic, fundamental needs for our neighbors who may need a little bit of help.” 

“There are so many opportunities to get involved with the organization, and it’s a really great way to build your personal and professional networks,” he added. “United Way is a bridge to all the other great organizations that it supports.”

This week, Adam and his YLU colleagues are busy planning IGNITE, their mid-winter party for young professionals. Proceeds from the fun night of dancing, dinner and drinks will support job training and workforce development programs in the Chicago region. 

Issues like employment and youth education are especially important to Adam. Over the years, he’s coached young professionals in his field, volunteered with STEM workshops and sports leagues for kids and mentored young adults who are experiencing housing insecurity. That’s why he’s so excited to be a part of IGNITE. 

“My hope is that eventually, across Chicago, it won’t matter where you’re from, that you’ll have the same opportunities and access to the same things whether you live in Lincoln Park or Brighton Park,” he said. 

You can help Adam and YLU bring more employment opportunities to our neighbors. Join them at IGNITE this Friday, Feb. 21! 

Looking for other ways to get involved? Consider joining a United Way affinity group to support our work and connect with other like-minded philanthropists!