The Rotary Humanitarian Patriot Award  honors outstanding area community contributors and their humanitarian efforts supporting Veterans and Returning Warriors. 

Tom Zengeler is the current President of Zengeler Cleaners and the 5th generation of Zengeler family leadership for Illinois’ oldest and the Midwest’s largest Cleaner. He is a charter member of the Libertyville Sunrise Rotary Club, having been a Rotarian now for nearly 26years.


Through his efforts, and community support, Zengeler Cleaners has supported Veteran’s programs since 2004, when they joined with Weinstein Family Services for the “Operation Sweaters for Veteran’s” program .  Starting in 2008, in conjunction with the Libertyville Sunrise Rotary Club, he led Zengeler Cleaners and the Rotary Club in the “Coats for Vets” program that each fall collects coats, jackets, gloves, and other winter apparel. 


Since that time Zengeler's has collected more than 10,000 articles of winter clothing. These are then inspected, repaired and cleaned before being delivered to veterans by Zengeler's.


Tom’s own words express his motivation and commitment best:


 “Far too many veterans have been negatively impacted by the slowdown in the economy. Now more than ever, we need to support them. After all, every American owes our way of life thanks to the service of our vets. With some international military engagements winding down, that means even more veterans than ever are coming home in need of jobs, food, clothing and housing. ‘Coats for Vets’ is a great opportunity for each of us to show our appreciation in a very meaningful way.”



At Wednesday's meeting at Lamb's Farm, Tom Zengeler received the plaque from Club President Bob Zamor, who had accepted it on Tom's behalf at the May 21st luncheon at the Captain James A. Lovell Center.