We are open to the public, and are requiring masks for all visitors over the age of 2. See Plan Your Visit page for additional information.

Skip to Content
200 North Main St | Bloomington, Illinois | 309-827-0428
/ Participate

History Maker's Gala

2021 History Makers

Since 2012, the History Makers Gala has recognized senior citizens whose outstanding, lifelong contributions of time and talents have helped to make McLean County a better place to live. This year the History Makers Gala and the Annual Meeting of the McLean County Historical Society will take place on the evening of June 16 from 6:30 – 7:45 p.m. Festivities will be virtual with a live feed and include presentations to our History Makers under the dome at the Museum. The evening will include the tradition of having a short performance by Illinois Voices Theater to recognize our honorees and their contributions to our community. Memory books will also be given to each honoree. Mail your written memory to the Museum or contact us here. We look forward to coming together in-person again for the Gala in 2022.

  • Jerry and Carole Ringer
  • Jerry and Carole’s shared passion for the arts is well-known in the community. Carole says, “(Art) helps to define the quality of life. Even if you are well able to put food on the table, culture is needed for the soul, mind, and spirit.”

    Click here to read a biography

  • Barbara Stuart

  • Barbara served for several years as president of the Normal Public Library Board and became the first president of the Friends of the Normal Public library. She also founded multiple activist organizations.

    Click here to read a biography

  • Marilyn and Robert Sutherland
  • During their five and half decades in Bloomington-Normal, Bob and Marilyn Sutherland dedicated their lives to make this a better community for everyone, particularly for those who often cannot make their own voices heard.

    Click here to read a biography

Event Registration

Reservations will not have a cost this year, but will still require that you register with your name and contact information. Closer to the evening, those who have registered will receive an email with information regarding how to access the virtual event, along with a digital program booklet. Members will also receive information regarding a new slate of board members and officers and how to vote. Donations and sponsorships may be made during the registration process. You may also mail donations directly to the Museum at 200 N. Main Street, Bloomington, IL 61701.

Donations & Sponsorships

The Museum has been pleased that the Gala in past years provided an average net profit of $22,500 in annual income for our efforts in preservation and sharing the rich stories of the people of McLean County. We invite our members, friends, and our local business community to consider a donation or become a sponsor for the evening. Donations made be made during the registration process. Sponsorship levels include: $5,000 Dome; $2,500 Rotunda; $1,000 Gallery; $500 Exhibit; $100 Display.

2021 Sponsors

Become a Sponsor

Promote your business or organization’s brand during this high-profile event. You will reach an engaged audience that is educated, affluent, and deeply involved in making our local area a better place to live and work. Sponsors will be recognized during the livestream event, in our digital program book, on our website, through social media, and in our On The Square Quarterly magazine that is distributed to over a 1,000 households.

The Gala is a great way to connect with our audience while demonstrating your commitment to the community. Contact Norris Porter, Director of Development, to learn more about our Corporate Alliance Program and how you can partner with the Museum as a sponsor for the Gala and throughout the year.

Nominate a History Maker

McLean County has no shortage of people who have dedicated their lives to making our community a better place to live.  History Maker nominees do not have to be wealthy, prominent or easily recognized. They do need to have a significant story to tell: perhaps it is one of service to their country and community; maybe it is a successful career, whether in a trade, business, profession or social service; or maybe their family together has left a lasting legacy for McLean County. 

Nominees must meet the following criteria:

  • Be at least 70 years of age
  • Have spent significant years in McLean County
  • Be able to share their stories with the community

Please download a nomination form and nominate a History Maker!

Word Document     |       PDF