Small Town, Big Heroes


Photographs by Amy Dreibelbis Fairweather of

D+F  Photography & Design

January 27 - April 1, 2017

Purchase "Small Town Big Heroes" photographs online

images © D+F Photography & Design

The United Way of Northwest Illinois cast a net searching for nominations featuring unsung heroes in Northwest Illinois.  The projects mission was about unearthing and celebrating those people in our community that simply make a big difference in the lives and organizations they touch, on a day-to-day basis and sometimes without realizing it. It wasn’t necessarily about the known leaders, Earth shakers or the outspoken ones, but rather a quest for those Heroes who do what they do and seldom ask for anything in return.  

The response to the nomination process was overwhelming and 13 unsung heroes were chosen to be celebrated during the inaugural Tour de Freeport Bike Ride on Sept. 24, 2016.  The Heroes were privately interviewed by Tim Connors (who is also a hero) in a face-to-face recorded session.  The Heroes were asked personal questions regarding their life journey, ideals and philosophies.  A quote was distilled from each of these conversations that best depicted the essence of their nomination.  After the interviews, photographic portraits were taken by Amy Dreibelbis Fairweather and Ben Fairweather of D + F Studio in a headshot style session. 

This will be an ongoing project with the objective to highlight the stories of individuals who make a difference in Northwest Illinois.