Brooke Witterman has worked as a real estate agent in the Beaver County/Robinson Township area for 12 years. She and her husband, Michael, also flip houses and rental properties together. The Witterman’s have 4 children, Grant (12), Christian (9), Carter (5), and Elle (1).
When Joel Repic, founder of Aliquippa Impact, was in high school, Brooke and Michael were his youth directors. Brooke and Michael kept in contact with Joel as he attended college, graduated, and eventually started Aliquippa Impact. When the youth programs were short-staffed the Witterman’s lent a helping hand.
One day, Joel contacted the Witterman’s to ask if one of them would consider joining AI’s board. The board was in need of someone with real-estate expertise after they obtained 2 houses and some vacant space to use for the youth programs. Brooke accepted Joel’s invitation. She has served on the board for nearly 4 years.
As a member of the board, Brooke works to find new, creative ways of expanding the organization’s resources. AI’s main source of revenue comes from grants and donations from individuals, companies and churches. Brooke explains that one of the board’s tasks is to ask, “Being creative, how can we more strategically meet places that are already giving? For instance if we are going to focus on churches, what are we doing or not doing with the churches to be able to capitalize on them knowing about what’s going on with Aliquippa Impact and how they can be involved? “ Brooke and the board also seek to discover additional people and places that they can inform about AI’s ministry.
The Witterman’s themselves have come a long way in their understanding of Aliquippa. Brooke says, “Really I can say Aliquippa Impact has opened our eyes up over the years we’ve been a part of the ministry to see what the needs of Aliquippa are and how vast some of the problems are. We currently live in Center Township-only a couple miles from the heart of Aliquippa-, but in a lot of ways it’s almost like different worlds. There’s a lot of stereotypes and prejudices that can be perceived.”
Being a part of Aliquippa Impact and growing closer to the community, the Witterman’s have also learned many valuable lessons. Brooke says, “Michael and I found that we need the people of Aliquippa as much as they need us. We have so much to learn from them. Michael mentored a boy from Aliquippa for years and that was really eye-opening. One of the things that we learned from him was generosity. I remember one of the first times Michael was with him, he bought the boy a Reese’s Peanut Butter at the library. The first thing he did was offer Michael half of the candy bar, even though he was hungry and had next to nothing himself.”
Brooke Witterman and members of AI’s board work to increase awareness of Aliquippa Impact’s programs and how they benefit kids like Michael’s mentee.