Pay It Forward: Kimberly Banister
Each month we honor someone who goes above and beyond to help those in need, and our last Pay It Forward story of 2017 is extra special.
Meet Veterans Assistance Commission of Sangamon County Superintendent Kimberly Banister.
"You guys are all in this? (Laughter)," Banister said after getting a $500 check from NewsChannel 20 and Hy-Vee. "Were you in on this too? I'm going to cry. Awwweeee. It's ok."
Banister was nominated by four people to be our year end Pay It Forward recipient.
Friends, veterans, and coworkers all say Banister is a powerful ally, helping everyone she can all the time.
"She gives of herself so often and so freely that, you know, she's somebody I look up to,” said St. John's Breadline Supervisor Shawna Harris. "Somebody I want to do more just because of knowing her."
A Navy veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom, Banister helps prevent other veterans from becoming homeless when they return home from war by connecting them with services through the Veterans Assistance Commission.
She also volunteers with countless organizations.
"There's no one that I know that does more for other human beings than her," said Cary Kasten, a military veteran and lifelong friend.
Banister leaves everyone wondering, how does she have time to do all of this, raise three sons and go to school for her masters degree?
An easy answer.
"I just like helping other people," Banister said. "It makes me feel good."