PODCAST: S2:EP12 Joan Steltman, Bounce Children’s Foundation

Joan Steltman joins our host Roy Kessel on S2:EP12 of the Sports Philanthropy Podcast

Joan Steltman, CEO, Bounce Children’s Foundation joins our host Roy Kessel on S2:EP12 of the Sports Philanthropy Podcast to share her insight into how she launched the organization and her plans for expanding the operations over the coming years.

Bounce Children’s Foundation transforms the lives of chronically ill children, and their families, shifting all from surviving to thriving.

Bounce’s core values include:

  • All kids deserve to be just kids.
  • Happier leads to healthier.
  • When Bounce children are diagnosed, the entire family is diagnosed.
  • No child should lose their childhood to the medical system.
  • A child’s work is play.
  • Connecting is the core of our human experience.
  • Kids are the future, invest in them accordingly.
  • Building resilience today creates a lifetime of value.
  • A helping hand, not a hand out.
  • An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Bounce creates community for chronically ill children and their families, creating connection, restoring their bounce, promoting healing, and helping them thrive. Previously she served as Executive Director for Starlight Children’s Foundation Midwest where she grew the organization four-fold in less than five years.

Prior to Starlight, Joan served as Vice President at Lake Forest Graduate School of Management where she led Development, Governance, Alumni Relations, and Community Outreach. She launched her career at IBM in sales leadership, business development, digital marketing and strategic planning and was an active leader in the re-invention of the company. 

Joan has been featured as Executive of the Month by Chicago Business Women magazine and cited in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and the Chicago Tribune. Joan served on the board of directors for National Runaway Safeline, Lake Forest/Lake Bluff Chamber of Commerce, and the Wish Ball Board for the Make-A-Wish Foundation Illinois. Joan earned an M.B.A. Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University and a B.B.A. (highest honors) Ross School of Business, University of Michigan.

Joan Steltman joins Roy Kessel on S2:EP12 of the Sports Philanthropy Podcast


  • 00:30 Background and education
  • 04:15 Accomplishments at Starlight Foundation
  • 10:15 Transition from Starlight to Bounce
  • 17:00 Creating space for kids to participate
  • 19:00 Helping kids that are medically challenged
  • 21:00 Building a support network
  • 24:30 Importance of getting kids involved in sports
  • 27:30 Challenges of care when no longer in hospital
  • 30:00 How Bounce provides support
  • 33:00 Funding support for Bounce programs
  • 36:30 Mechanism for getting referrals to Bounce
  • 41:00 Importance of financial support for programs

For more information about Bounce Children’s Foundation, visit their website at www.bouncechildrensfoundation.org.

Roy Kessel

Roy Kessel

Roy Kessel is the Founder of the Sports Philanthropy Network. Roy has worked in the sports business world for over 20 years including serving as an instructor in Northwestern University's graduate Sports Management Program. Having served as a sports lawyer representing athletes, entrepreneurs and start-up businesses, Roy has extensive experience helping organizations improve their strategy, marketing, communications and leadership development.
Sports Philanthropy Network

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