Date: August 21st, 2013

Bill Van Deest Recognized as PCF Volunteer of the Year

The Platteville Community Fund (PCF) has selected William Van Deest to receive its 2013 Volunteer of the Year recognition.  Van Deest has resided in and served the Platteville community for nearly 45 years.

In speaking of the selection of Van Deest, PCF Board President Eileen Nickels noted, “Bill’s involvement with the Platteville Community Fund dates to its founding, over 10 years ago.  Bill has promoted investment in the future of this community.  He has worked diligently on behalf of people, organizations, and projects.  He truly understands the need for providing for the future of Platteville.”

Originally Van Deest moved to Platteville, from Indianapolis, when he joined the faculty in business at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville (UWP).

From left:  Bill Van Deest, Platteville Community Fund 2013 Volunteer of the Year, with PCF Advisory Board members Cindy Tang and Les Hollingsworth.

From left: Bill Van Deest, Platteville Community Fund 2013 Volunteer of the Year, with PCF Advisory Board members Cindy Tang and Les Hollingsworth.

He taught full-time at UWP for 10 years, serving part of that time as department chair in business.  He continued his work as a faculty member, part-time, for many years – teaching on campus and through the distance program.  Van Deest and his wife, Dianne, along with Don Gonnerman, founded Midwest Title Company in 1974.  The Van Deests operated that enterprise, with its primary office in Lancaster, through 2002.

Van Deest’s service to community is noteworthy.  He is a past Platteville Community Fund board member, having served nearly 11 years on the PCF Advisory Board.  He provided leadership, as chair, of the organization and continues his involvement as a volunteer – maintaining the organization’s history and stewardship records.  Van Deest’s other civic involvements include the UW-Platteville Shakespeare Festival Board where he served as president, the Southwest Health Center Board where he acted as secretary, City of Platteville Museum Board, the Platteville Public Schools Music Boosters and the Platteville Morning Optimists.

Van Deest is currently employed by L & M Corrugated as senior advisor.  The Van Deests have two children:  Carrie, Producing Director at the University of Minnesota Theatre Arts & Dance Department, Twin Cities campus, and Sam, a process engineer with J.M. Smucker Co, New Orleans.

The Platteville Community Fund, a component of the Community Foundation of Southern Wisconsin, Inc., is a tax-exempt public charity. The Platteville Community Fund’s growth and success depends on community members who share a commitment and are able to invest their resources in the Platteville community to enhance art, education, health and human services, the environment and historic preservation.  PCF accepts grant applications twice yearly.  The PCF provides a means for individuals, organizations and businesses to support their unique charitable community interests for good, for ever.

For more information about the Platteville Community Fund, contact Eileen Nickels, advisory board chair, at (608)778-2959 or Barb Daus, donor services representative with the Community Foundation of Southern Wisconsin, at (608) 778-3344 or    Community members interested in making a donation may send a check to the Platteville Community Foundation, PO Box 46, Platteville, WI 53818, or visit to donate online.