Meta Berger’s Profile
Past Chair 2006-2007
Meta (Schwartz) (Mrs. Ronald) Berger, Chair of the Lynn Sage Cancer Research Foundation (LSCRF) is of another generation — from the early 50s, a time when women married, had children and didn’t go to work. “If by chance a woman did work, you could be a school teacher, a secretary or a nurse. We didn’t lead boards or go into business,” recalls Mrs. Berger.
A liberal arts graduate of the University of Miami, she eventually did both by serving as Chair of the LSCRF (2006-2007), as part of a distinguished career as a wife, mother, grandmother and ‘professional volunteer’ with some of Chicago’s most prestigious and valuable organizations.
“My charity work is my vocation and I do not get paid in money but in many other ways. I am a professional volunteer and, on some days, I work at it 4 to 6 hours a day,” she says. Her work with LSCRF began in 1996 when she and her husband Ron co-chaired the Foundation’s tenth Anniversary Gala and they continued as members. She became an executive board member in 1997 and became Vice Chairman of the Board (2003-2005).
“Men as well as women have to find a way, a place, to give back. Philanthropy is not only a woman’s job anymore – it’s something everyone must be doing,” says Mrs. Berger.
Among the many organizations Meta Berger contributed to since becoming a professional volunteer in 1975:
- Illinois Arts Council
- Museum of Contemporary Art
- American Jewish Committee
- Ballet Chicago
- The Illinois Committee for the National Museum of Women in the Arts
- The Jewish Women’s Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago
- City of Chicago – Mayor’s Office of Special Events (First Annual Holocaust Remembrance Rally; Conference of Mayor’s Dinner Dance)
- The Art Institute of Chicago
- North Lakeside Cultural Center
- Joffrey Ballet
- Hubbard Street Dance Chicago
- Steppenwolf Theatre Company
- Goodman Theatre