The 2018 Outstanding Young Person is a Union native who continues to give back to his community.
Dan Rettke was honored with the award Saturday night at the Union Area Chamber of Commerce’s 48th Annual Distinguished Service Awards Banquet.
“Whether it’s through his work, club activities or his church, this person believes that you get out of your community what you put into it,” Chamber President Steve Campbell said. “With that philosophy in mind, the outstanding young person has — as long as anyone can remember — worked to leave things a little bit better, stronger and more enriched than when he started.”
Rettke has been at the United Bank of Union since 2012. He currently serves as the assistant vice president of marketing.
In 2015, while working with the bank, Rettke created and launched the first Project United, a community service day sponsored by United Bank of Union. The event is now held each spring and fall to make the community a better, cleaner and prettier place to live.
These projects have improved the community and have ranged from clearing invasive plants to helping pick up trash, painting, and even working to construct playground equipment at the city’s new Veterans Memorial Park.
Since the first event, nearly 1,000 volunteers representing approximately 54 individual groups, businesses, and organizations have come together to complete 50 unique projects and donated more than 4,200 hours of volunteer community service, all under Rettke’s guidance.
In addition to his work with Project United, Rettke has been a member of the Union Kiwanis Club since 2012. Over the years, he has volunteered his time and talents serving a number of committees.
He is a chairperson for the club’s largest fundraiser, the annual golf tournament, and helped launch the organization’s website. Additionally, he helps facilitate and run the annual Founder’s Day 3-on-3 basketball tournament.
Retkke has worked with youth in the Union Middle School Builders Club and partnering activities with kids (PAK) student leadership/development groups. At Christmas Rettke helps deliver gifts and hams to struggling families in the Union School District through the Angel Tree Project, making the holiday special for kids.
Continuing his mission to serve youth, he supports the Webster Hills United Methodist Church Youth Group, providing a gathering place and breakfast for about 20 children each Sunday.
A few years ago, he and his wife, Meaghan, chaperoned a mission trip to an HIV/AIDS community in the Bahamas where they helped build structures for shunned residents to live.
Rettke serves on the church’s facilities committee, which oversees projects and facility improvements and serves as a special events chairman and a board member for the Missouri Young Bankers Leadership Division.
Rettke grew up in Union and graduated from Union High School. He went to college at Truman State University. He currently resides in St. Louis with his wife and 7-month-old daughter, Reese.
“This was extremely unexpected,” Rettke said. “. . . Union was my home growing up and it has become my home again through work and other things. This is very appreciated.”