Member Spotlight: Michelle Sanders

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Michelle Denise Danage- Sanders, Community Outreach Manager for Heartland Health Services, Peoria, IL. Born and raised in Peoria and daughter of Fred M Danage Jr and Royce F. Danage. Her father was one of the first Minority contractors in Peoria, and mom was a stay at home mom, until she returned to work in the banking industry. She attended Manual High School, graduated in the top 20% of her class. Michelle was the Captain of the Orange Crushettes, dance and poms team all four (4) years of high school. Michelle played Clarinet, tennis, bowled and participated in different talent/drama productions in school.

She worked in the banking industry as a Bank Vault Teller, Data Entry Specialist, Trust Clerk, Bond and Investment Specialist, and as a Brokerage Clerk. Opportunity to work as a Brokerage Branch Cashier/Office Assistant for Dean Witter presented itself, and she left the banking industry.

Michelle has worked for State Farm Insurance assisting two agents with Marketing and cold calling. She later, switched the direction of her career because of her son having an inherited blood disorder. She was then offered a job to work in public housing as a Finance Assistant, then promoted to Program Coordinator over the Family Self-Sufficiency department. Later she was hired by Illinois Central College as an Academic Advisor for the Upward Bound Program, and later worked as a School Liaison and Teacher Assistant for Peoria Public Schools.

Michelle was then hired by Advocates for Access as their Grant/Development and Homeownership Coordinator for a pilot program they started for persons with disabilities. After Advocates for Access, she was offered a position as a Nutrition Program Manager with Central Illinois Area Agency on Aging.

Michelle then received the opportunity to work for a Managed Care Organization – Molina Healthcare, which opened the doors for her to have experience to work for Heartland Health Services as the Community Outreach Manager.

Currently she is a board member for the Pekin YWCA and the Women’s Fund Advisory Board.She is active with OSF Women Advisory Council, Peoria Chamber of Commerce Ambassador and a City of Peoria Commissioner for Fair Employment and Housing Commission and serves as Vice Chair. Michelle, is also the Special Events and Wedding Coordinator for St. Paul Baptist Church, under the leadership of Pastor Deveraux R. Hubbard. Michelle is currently a writer for the Traveler Newspaper, Radio Host of the FORUM on WPNV 106.3 FM, and Talk Show Host for Stage 729, on Public Access TV. Michelle also holds a leasing agents license, certification in grant writing, and is a former member of the AFP (Association of Fundraising Professionals). She holds a degree in Business Management and Finance. She also has 4 children and 14 grandchildren to add to her list of accomplishments.


Michelle has been blessed to develop an extensive skill set in event planning, marketing, fundraising/development, programming and communications to better serve her community and church. Michelle is always seeking to network and connect with others.


You can follow Michelle Sanders on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn or email her at work or personal email is:

Liz Gunty