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“A Chance at Life”

Bob McMahon learned about ProKids almost 20 years ago through the holiday gift collection done at the Cincinnati Bar Association. It was a tradition Bob ended up sharing with his mother and sisters – going out every Black Friday and hunting for the perfect gifts for our children.

To this day, Bob still gives to ProKids during the holidays. For him, the holidays are a constant reminder of the importance of family, a time when those who are often forgotten absolutely shouldn’t be.

Bob’s dedication to our mission has grown ever since that festive introduction – as a Friends of Children Society member, a planned giving donor, a former board member and a still-committed strategic partner.

In part, Bob’s motivation lies in his experience of childhood – as the youngest of 10 siblings raised by “amazing” parents. According to Bob, the love, care and protection he felt – everything that came from growing up in a safe and stable environment – made him who he is today. Bob can’t imagine life any other way, and he’s committed to ensuring that ProKids children have a chance at the same.

For Bob, ProKids’ work isn’t just about ending abuse. It’s about giving our children “a chance at life.”

His tenure on the ProKids Board of Trustees – from 2014 to 2023 – is just one way Bob has worked to achieve that end. He led our Inclusion & Diversity Committee, acted as our secretary, and served as the board president during a turbulent time: the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Not only did Bob lead the board through its fiduciary responsibilities, he ensured ProKids’ staff felt supported through the challenges. From working through changes to the ProKids budget to encouraging his fellow board members to come together for our children, Bob helped to weather the storm. And always thinking of our children, he put together hundreds for PPE (personal protective equipment) kits for our kids and their families.

Not only concerned with supporting day-to-day operations, Bob has been a key supporter as we’ve prepared for ProKids’ future, particularly when it came to finding our new home, where ProKids will move in December 2023. The search for this space, which Bob calls “historic,” started in 2018 – and even then, ProKids was bursting at the seams.

As a member of the ProKids Office Space Committee, Bob helped to identify potential spaces, determine what was feasible, and think through the steps of this very lengthy process. He was ready and willing to visit any space to help determine if it would meet ProKids’ needs – even touring some former funeral homes.

As good as the first 40+ years have been, Bob said this next space will take ProKids to a whole new level, setting the stage for serving more and more children who desperately need a CASA Volunteer in their corner.

Also a longtime table captain at ProKids’ Friends of Children Breakfast, Bob has brought over 10 new donors to our Friends of Children Society. We’re grateful that he isn’t shy about sharing what ProKids means to him:

When Bob speaks to ProKids CASA Volunteers, who he says are the lifeblood of our organization, he sees the result of our community’s investment. He sees them get teary-eyed, talking about their ProKids child with pride.

Each time, Bob hears the powerful outcomes of their advocacy: with kids finding their forever homes, being placed with their siblings, achieving developmental milestones or getting back on track with school. Again, for Bob, it’s about brighter futures – guiding children from abuse and neglect to placements where they can thrive, given a chance to fulfill their promise.

Ultimately, Bob shares our vision earnestly. And ProKids is privileged that he’s taken it to heart – to the lasting benefit of our children.

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