Our Mission

Operation Snowball is an international youth program that empowers student leaders through prevention education, community advocacy, and leadership development to create a positive impact.

The Creation of Snowball

Operation Snowball began in 1977 in Rockford, Illinois when participants of the Illinois Teenage Institute (ITI) (now the Cebrin Goodman Teen Institute/CGTI) came back to their community and thought, “We could do ITI back home!” Thus, Operation Snowball was created.  The name originates from the idea that “If I have a positive impact on you, you can have a positive impact on someone else and the effect snowballs.”

By 1989, Operation Snowball, Inc. obtained it’s not-for-profit 501(c)(3) status to make the program stronger. 

Funded in whole or in part by the Illinois Department of Human Services, Division of Substance Use Prevention and Recovery a grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and the Lillian and Larry Goodman Foundation.

A Comprehensive Program

The program fosters a youth & adult partnership.

Has been implemented in schools and communities ranging from rural, suburban and urban...from small towns to major metropolitan areas...with the ability to adapt components to address local conditions.

Uses the powerful energy and influence of youth to create an atmosphere of positive peer support, recognizing youth as part of the solution.

Supports Social Emotional Learning as youth develop attitudes, beliefs, behaviors, and cognitive skills that create healthy and competent adults.

Utilizes SAMHSA’s Strategic Prevention Framework in developing the infrastructure needed for a community-based, public health approach.

Program models include: Snowball, Snowflake, Snowflurry, Snowcap, Blizzard, and Segue

Team Membership

We are now offering FREE team and individual registrations. No longer do we have accreditation fees and individuals can sign up versus being affiliated with a team or group from your school.


Alumni & Friends

For most, Snowball was a life changing experience and people want to continue the connection. The Operation Snowball Alumni & Friends was developed to do just that.  You learned what it means to have the confidence to believe in yourself and continue to make healthy life choices, and impacting the next generation of Snowballers is legacy worth continuing.  Click here to fill our Alumni Database form and stay involved with Operation Snowball, Inc.!

2023 Board of Directors

Katie Hyland  

Kelly Stadter

Ankit Patel

Amari Brown 

Teresa Rosa-Jacks

Angie Patel 
District 1

Kelly Stadter
District 1

Emma Murphy
District 2

Tessa Konzal 
District 2

Mary Czaplewski
District 2

Dennis Trask 
District 3

Christine McMillian  
District 3

Symone Farmer
IABH Appointee

Holly Windhorst 
IABH Appointee

Carter Langston
IABH Appointee

Darin Sullivan
IABH Appointee


Hailey Baffico 
Youth Advocate

Yanna Flor
Youth Advocate

Kayla Mata 
Youth Advocate

Julia McDermott   
Youth Advocate

Maya Rubio 
Youth Advocate

Claudine Ricana 
Youth Advocate