Chuck Stewart has spent his career helping others to find new jobs, obtain training and better their lives.
And now it is Stewart who needs a helping hand.
The director of Partners in Job Training & Placement, Moline, suffered a massive stroke April 2. After undergoing life-saving surgery and spending weeks in intensive care at OSF St. Francis Medical Center, Peoria, the 56-year-old Stewart now is recovering at a Quad-City nursing and rehabilitation facility.
To assist with his out-of-pocket and growing rehabilitation expenses, his family and friends have organized a benefit event from 4-8 p.m. July 14 at Jim’s Knoxville Tap, 8716 Knoxville Road, Milan.
“Chuck is now going through physical, occupational and speech therapy with the optimistic hope that he will be able to return to work,” said Mark Lohman, the agency’s interim director and one of the benefit organizers.
Stewart’s youngest daughter, Rebecca Stewart, said she and her siblings, Mark and Rachel Stewart, collectively came up with the idea for a benefit and have found strong support from their father’s friends, co-workers and many of the businesses he has assisted throughout his career.
Stewart has served as the workforce agency’s director since 1996 and has worked nearly 30 years for the organization.
“Chuck’s work has benefited both businesses and individuals over the years,” Lohman said.
Lohman, who also serves on the governing Workforce Development Board of Rock Island, Henry and Mercer Counties, credited Stewart’s leadership with helping the unemployed as well as the under-employed. “He also has helped employers to expand their work force.”
Stewart, who grew up on the south side of Chicago, is a graduate of Augustana College, Rock Island. He oversees Job Training & Placement’s nine-person staff which operates out of offices at the Rock Island County Office Building and the Success Network facility near Moline’s SouthPark Mall.
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The Success Network is made up of several partners that provide employment and training resources, including Job Training & Placement, Black Hawk College, Illinois Department of Employment Security and the Illinois Department of Human Services. The network also includes several not-for-profit organizations.
Rebecca Stewart said the ordeal has opened her eyes to all the lives her father has touched. “No one deserves to go through this, but my dad has spent his entire life helping people,” she said, adding that they have received get well cards and wishes from across the country.
“The physical therapist he has right now went to Job Training and they helped with paying for his school,” she said.
Organizers still are accepting items to be raffled off and for an auction. The event also will include food provided by Jim’s Knoxville Tap.
To arrange for a pickup, call Rebecca Stewart at 309-236-1653. The benefit is open to the public. Monetary donations can be made directly at