Community Link Board of Directors Elect New Officers

July 10, 2023

Breese, IL – As Community Link begins its new fiscal year, the board of directors elected new officers to govern.

The newly elected board president is Ron Foppe. Foppe begins his fifth year on the board as the new president. He and his wife, Kerry, own Foppe Ace Hardware and he is a safety officer for the Breese Fire Department. Foppe is passionate about community employment for individuals with developmental disabilities and plans to continue to move the organization forward with employment opportunities.

Tara Hilmes was elected to a second 3-year term on the board as well as the new board vice president. With a master’s degree in nursing and over 15 years of experience in the medical field, Hilmes is currently a family nurse practitioner at Anderson Hospital Express Care. As a former Community Link employee, she understands the needs of the organization’s participants and continues to make a difference in the lives of people with developmental disabilities through this new appointment.

Community Link is grateful for the continued commitment of Theresa Morrison and Jeff Niemeyer who have been reelected secretary and treasurer, respectively. Morrison spent her professional life teaching special education and is a strong advocate for her son, Alex, who lives in a Community Link CILA (Community Integrated Living Arrangement) home, and all individuals with disabilities. Niemeyer is the general agent for Knights of Columbus – The Niemeyer Agency and provides expertise in finance, insurance, and business.

John Huelskamp, Community Link executive director stated, “Community Link is fortunate to have such passionate, mission-based individuals like Ron and Tara step up into board leadership positions. Ron as a business leader in our community and Tara as a healthcare professional and former employee of Community Link both offer immense value to our organization. We look forward to their leadership in their new roles.”

Community Link thanks former board president Amanda Loepker and former board vice president Paulette Evans for their steadfast service as the organization navigated the challenges of covid and staffing shortage. Loepker served as president for 2 years and will continue to serve on the board for a second 3-year term. Evans served as vice president for 2 years and will fulfill her second term on the board for another year.

Community Link, a non-profit organization and proud United Way member agency, is dedicated to enhancing the lives of individuals with disabilities through a person-centered approach that promotes self-directed living choices and community integration opportunities. The mission of Community Link is to offer opportunities for growth and independence for people with developmental disabilities. For more information, please visit