About
America's
Gold Star Families

America’s Gold Star Families is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization created to provide honor, hope and healing to those grieving any military loss through active duty service. We include all family members representing all conflicts, all branches of service and all circumstance of death.

IRS EIN 46-5574571.

Mission Statement

America’s Gold Star Families honors our fallen heroes who served in the United States Armed Forces and cares for their survivors through programs and services at no cost to the survivors.

Advocacy and Awareness

Many people are unaware of the significance of the Gold Star banner and its meaning. America’s Gold Star Families is committed to educating others on this important designation, how to properly respond when meeting someone who has lost a loved one in service to our country and advocating for their needs.

Governance

America’s Gold Star Families is governed by a Board of Directors which serves under the oversight of a Gold Star Advisory Council comprised of gold star family members and survivors. This is to insure the Board properly meets the needs of survivors adequately with appropriate protocol. At this time founder and president Patti Smith is on sabbatical with Scott Corsaut serving as Interim President. Scott can be reached at 309-678-0117.

Gold Star Advisory Council

  • Kathy Bastean, Gold Star Mother
  • Brenda Bland, Gold Star Mother
  • Jerome & Frances Maddox, Gold Star Parents
  • Dale & Mary Ann Nannen, Gold Star Parents
  • Don & Robyn Pannier, Gold Star Parents

Board of Directors

  • Scott Corsaut, President, US Marine Veteran
  • Billy Halstead, Vice President, Chairman Peoria County Democrats
  • Mary Ardis, Secretary
  • Kent Rotherham, CPA, Treasurer
  • Chris Doscotch, Attorney at Law, US Army veteran
  • Dennis Tipsword, US Coast Guard Veteran, Current Vice Chairman National American Legion Veterans Employment and Education Commission
  • Patti Smith, MBA

Honorary Board Members

  • Kevin Lacz, US Navy Seal, American Sniper co-star
  • Lt. Col. (Ret.) Lester D. Bergsten, United States Air Force
  • Lt. Col. (Ret.) Jack McManus, United States Marine Corps
  • Aaron T. Boyer, MD, former Major United States Air Force

Events

Call 309-678-0117 for more info. All sponsors are listed on our website.

Scott Corsaut Bio

  • Honorably Discharged Unites States Marine Corps Veteran
  • Commander of the General Wayne A Downing American Legion Post 1111, Peoria Heights Illinois
  • Past Board member, Americas Gold Star Families
  • Member of U.S. Congressman Darin LaHoods 18th Congressional District Veterans Advisory Council
  • Alternate Delegate on the Peoria County Veterans Assistance Commission
  • Member of the Peoria Memorial Day Committee
  • Chairman, Armed Forces Celebration Day
  • Member of the Marine Corps League

About the Founder

Patti Smith is a double blue star proud Mother of two US Marines who are now veterans. When her two sons enlisted in the United States Marine Corps within six months of each other, she received a crash introduction course into the military community. The emotional roller coaster of send off’s, boot camp graduations, writing letters, deployments, sending care packages, supporting other military families, homecomings—all occurred within a few short years. At one point both sons were deployed to Iraq at the same time. These life changing events altered the course of her life forever and while her sons now lead productive civilian lives, Patti serves as support advocate for Gold Star families and survivors everywhere. Along with their two sons, Patti have two daughters and several grandchildren.