top of page

ABOUT US!

History

Incorporated in April 1951, Friendship House began as a cooperative effort by the American Baptist Church and the local Council of Churches.

Our first facility, a Quonset hut donated by Bradley University and dubbed “Operation Friendship House”, generated community excitement and served as both missionary residence and recreation center.

The Friendship House Board took a leap of faith in 1957, securing the former Grace Presbyterian Church building at 800 NE Madison Avenue, acquiring ten 

times the amount of program space. By 1963, Friendship House of Christian Service had grown to serve nearly 150 families and provide over 23,000 contacts.

Then, with the growth of services and need, in the mid-1970’s, Friendship House needed to create a new space that would allow for that growth for the years to come and the former church building was taken down and a new building was erected in its place, complete with a commercial kitchen, offices, meeting space, classrooms and a full-size gymnasium.  Today, that building is the home of all of the amazing services that Friendship House provides with our complete wrap-around services.

IMG_3319.JPG

OUR TEAM

Our team at the Peoria Friendship House is made up of compassionate and empathetic individuals dedicated to serving the Peoria community. Check out our fantastic team members below!

Sommerville, Marcellus.jpg

Marcellus Sommerville

President/CEO

cortney 5.JPG

Cortney Foster 

Chief Operating Officer

IMG_5696.JPG

Chip Bates

Director of Operations

IMG_5892.JPG

Catalina Zavala 

Director of La Familia

Amya Mitchell

Development & Marketing Manager

IMG_5672.JPG

Adrianne Streitmatter 

6th-8th Grade S.T.E.A.M.S Academy Instructor 

PMP Organizer

IMG_5849.JPG

Valeria Arellano 

3rd-5th Grade S.T.E.A.M.S Academy Instructor

PMP Coordinator

Shaday Brown

K-2nd Grade S.T.E.A.M.S Academy Instructor 

PMP Coordinator 

Taz Bates 

Director of Transportation

Taya Bates

Peoria PeaceKeepers Assistant 

Michelle Estrada

3rd-5th Grade S.T.E.A.M.S Academy Instructor

PMP Coordinator 

The Peoria Friendship House 
Board of Directors

Bob Woolsey

President

Jones Bros.

Email: bob@jonesbros.com 

Screen Shot 2022-08-24 at 12.03.19 PM.png

Andrew Parmelee

Member

PNC Private Bank Market Leader

Email: TBD

Screen Shot 2022-08-24 at 12.01.20 PM.png

Art Oakford

Member

Emeritus

Email: ajoakford50@aol.com

Screen Shot 2022-08-19 at 2.32.00 PM.png

Pam Alwan

Member

IMG_9949 2.heic

Hedy Elliot

Member

Peoria Public Schools 

Email: hedelliott@hotmail.com 

Screen Shot 2022-08-24 at 12.00.58 PM.png

LaMar Anderson

Member

Eureka College

Email: landerson@eureka.edu

Screen Shot 2022-08-19 at 2.32.00 PM.png

David Joseph

Member

Screen Shot 2022-08-24 at 12.00.46 PM.png

Bridget Booker

Member

Reign Construction Inc. 

Email: bridget@reignconstructioninc.com 

Screen Shot 2022-08-24 at 12.00.23 PM.png

Wendy Mitchell

Member

Screen Shot 2022-08-24 at 12.00.35 PM.png

Rick Gaa

Member

Louisville Slugger Sports Complex

Email: rgaa@sluggerpeoria.com 

Michael.jpg

Michael Unruh

Member

Miguel Ramirez

Member

OSF Orthopaedics 

Email: maramirez09@gmail.com

Screen Shot 2022-08-19 at 2.32.00 PM.png

Heather Sexton

Member

Junior Achievement of Central Illinois  

Email: heather.sexton@ja.org

Screen Shot 2022-08-19 at 2.32.00 PM.png

Sharon Tear

Member

Rachelle Cummings Schilling

Member

Kendra Belk

Member

bottom of page