Willie Heineke (he/him) is the National Service Program Manager at Housing Action Illinois. In this role, Willie oversees the management and development of Housing Action’s VISTA Network. In addition to spearheading the expansion of the network, which places and supports up to 30 full-year VISTA members with Housing Action member organizations throughout the state each year, in 2017 Willie launched an additional Summer VISTA Associates program, which places and supports individuals committing to 8- to 10-week terms of service. Willie first joined the Housing Action team in November 2015 as an AmeriCorps VISTA Leader, after which he became the organization’s Outreach Coordinator.
Prior to his time at Housing Action, Willie served two terms of national service through AmeriCorps VISTA in a small town of north central Arizona called Prescott. The first position focused on increasing the use of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program at local farmers markets, and the second position focused on creating a culinary training and gardening program for a local organization serving formerly homeless veterans. Willie earned his B.A. at Prescott College, where he designed his own degree to integrate the school’s Global Studies and Human Development programs.