Volunteering is a way of life for Chuck Gilbert


Chuck Gilbert is a man of many careers and projects.

If you live in the Stateline area, you are likely to know the name Chuck Gilbert. Chuck’s footprint and influence can be found everywhere. He retired from Hendricks Holdings a few years ago, but hasn’t slowed down. He just switched his energies to a new business - volunteering.

Chuck was born in 1951 at St. Mary Hospital in Madison, WI. He attended elementary and high school in the Menasha, WI area, where he played baseball, football and basketball.

After graduating high school, Chuck continued playing sports at UW La Crosse in La Crosse WI. He earned a bachelor’s degree in education and sports science.

It was at La Crosse that he met his future wife, Carlyn, from Beloit, WI.

After graduating, he worked as a coach and teacher until he was recruited on his honeymoon by the president of Taylor Freezer in Rockton. He retired from Taylor after 38 years, but 40 years ago, he started the Dairyhäus in Rockton.

He and Carlyn lived in Beloit and then moved to Roscoe in 1978, where they raised three children: Ben, Allison and Elizabeth. All three children graduated from Hononegah Community High School.

Chuck’s main volunteer focus has been in educational programs, including Hononegah’s Workplace Readiness Program, Education Manufacturing Connection, and HOPE Foundation. He is a board member of Hononegah’s INCubator Entrepreneur Program.

“I enjoy working with good people who want to do things for others,” he said. “You can accomplish much if you don’t care who gets the credit. I like doing the little things that add up to more accomplishments in a lifetime.”

And that’s not all: Chuck is a board member and one of the founders of elev815, an organization of area business volunteers; a Roscoe Township trustee; Beloit Sports Complex small group contributor, and is on the board of directors of the Catholic Diocese of Madison Foundation (CDMF).

Chuck served as past-president of the Beloit/South Beloit Boys and Girls Club. He was instrumental in changing the name of the club from a boy’s club, to include girls.

It was at the Boys and Girls Club that he met fellow board member Diane Hendricks, president of Hendricks Holdings in Beloit. In 2019, Hendricks invited Chuck to come work for her company, where he was employed for three years.

Once again, he said he was retiring, but the Stateline Chamber of Commerce knocked on his door, asking him to serve as executive director. He accepted and headed the Chamber for one year.

This time, he really did retire, and helped start elev815. He confesses that he is just as busy volunteering as he was when employed.

Currently, Chuck is working with Hendricks Holding, Visit Beloit, and Huddle Up Group to work out options for building an indoor/outdoor hockey arena in Beloit. A feasibility study is underway.

Chuck thrives on being productive. His motto is, "Stay active to stay young." It seems to be working for him.

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