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June 17, 2024

Company Unlawfully Solicited Kankakee County For $25k –

By John Kraft & Kirk Allen

On November 17, 2021

Kankakee Co., IL. (ECWd) –

Unregistered company, claiming to be a charitable organization, solicited Kankakee County for $25k – thankfully, they ignored the request for funding.

This is simply one more of the many solicitations sent by a company not registered to conduct business in Illinois, not registered to solicit donations in Illinois, and not listed in the IRS’s searchable database of charitable organizations..

This solicitation even claims to be able to certify police officers, and get trained “in under 15 minutes.”

Another local government has been solicited for a “contribution” or “grant” from a company, which, according to the Secretary of State’s Department of Business Services, is not registered to do business in the state of Illinois. This unregistered company has been soliciting local governments for contributions or grants for the purported purpose of developing training for elected officials and police officers.

The company’s name is “Fight For IL”, and is not registered with the Illinois Secretary of State to conduct business in Illinois. It purports to be a 501(c)(3) but has never registered with the Illinois Attorney General’s Charity Bureau to solicit in Illinois (according to both the SOS and AG websites).

This specific solicitation was sent by Tara Gunder (read the email here) on May 10, 2021, to the Champaign County Clerk’s email account.

Fight For IL registered in Florida as a not-for-profit in February 2021, but does not list a FEIN in their business registration, and cannot be found in the Internal Revenue Service’s database of charitable organizations (maybe the IRS is slow in updating its database…). Illinois law requires foreign (out-of-state) corporations to register in Illinois prior to conducting business in Illinois.

The Illinois Charitable Trust Act and Solicitation For Charity Act require registration prior to solicitation in Illinois.

The corporate officers are Bonnie Kurowski, Erik Phelps, and Eowyn Correl. Employees of the corporation (according to their website)  include Matt Knutelsky, Tara Gunder, and Lynn Urlaub.

They recently asked Shelby County and Champaign County for $50K each to help develop their corporation and indicated in the solicitation they were asking other local governments for grants also.

A copy of the solicitation to Kankakee County can be found (HERE).

As always, we challenge any public body to provide the citation to any authority for them to expend any public funds for such a purpose as this.

More on this to follow in the coming days, until then, we urge local governments to do their due diligence prior to gifting taxpayer funds to anyone.




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1 Comment
  • Darrel W. Bruck Jr. President of OUTRAGE
    Posted at 10:51h, 17 November Reply

    Thanks for posting this. If this company would have been politically connected to the good old boy/girl political network here in Kankakee County, they would have gotten the taxpayers money. Kankakee County is a little Chicago/Cook County. They don’t even allow the duly elected Kankakee County Auditor to do his job as required by the state statutes. They keep financial information from him. They keep financial information from him. Even the sheriff does not allowed the auditor access to all his departments financial information. My organization OUTRAGE would love to sue the county of this issue but we do not have the funding or access to a out of county attorney who would take the case.

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