CHICAGOLAND VACCINE PARTNERSHIP
Addressing our communities’ most immediate needs has always been—and always will be—foundational to the Trust’s work. In 2021, one of our most urgent priorities was making sure Chicago’s Black and Latinx communities were not left behind in the COVID vaccine rollout.
MEDIA MAKERS NETWORK
Community media groups are vital to the people and places they serve. Whether it’s a treasured legacy newspaper or a weekly podcast, such outlets use their passion, creativity, and deep community knowledge to provide residents with the information they need to make positive local change.
CAFÉ DU BOIS
When it comes to helping individuals, families, and communities build wealth, neighborhood investment is a force multiplier. Neighborhood development projects create businesses and jobs, bring in new services and amenities that make life better for residents, and increase the flow of dollars to and within the community.
COALITIONS FOR EQUITY IN WEALTH POLICY
From redlining to predatory lending, laws and policies have played an instrumental role in preventing generations of Black and Latinx families from building as much wealth as white families. For our region to move forward, we need laws and policies that work for all of us.
SEARLE FUNDS HIGHLIGHT:
A CONVERSATION WITH PEGGY DAVIS AND ANGEL GIBSON
To administer the Searle Collaborative Funds, the Trust works closely with Kinship Foundation—a private operating foundation that advances the institutional philanthropy of the Searle family. The two organizations have a long history of working together to create large-scale, strategic grant making initiatives designed to maximize the Searle Funds’ impact.
OUR PARTNERS IN CHANGE
Brian Barnes is the founder and CEO of financial tech start-up M1 Finance. With his siblings, he also manages a fund at the Trust that was…
For Marty Castro, philanthropy is a kind of family business. “For at least a couple of generations before me, we Castros have been very…
When Ken O’Keefe was starting out as an investment banker, he was struck by the contrast between the luxurious lifestyles…
TERESA PRIM AND G. SEQUANE LAWRENCE
Teresa Prim and G. Sequane Lawrence have spent their personal and professional lives serving their community and…
MARS WRIGLEY FOUNDATION &
THE VISTRIA GROUP
Recognizing that we can do far more together than alone, the Trust is deeply committed to partnerships—not just with our donors and…
THE TRUST FONDLY REMEMBERS OUR FRIENDS WHO HAVE RECENTLY PASSED
Activist, educator, and historian Timuel Black worked tirelessly for civil rights and helped mobilize the political power of Black residents on the South Side. After liberating a concentration camp during his service in World War II and drawing parallels to the experiences of Black people during United States slavery, Black pledged his life to building peaceful and just communities. He fulfilled this vow as a community organizer, a Chicago Public Schools high school history teacher, and a sociology and anthropology professor with City Colleges of Chicago. His many accomplishments included helping spearhead the voter registration campaign credited with assisting Mayor Harold Washington’s election; being the lead plaintiff in an Illinois lawsuit that secured key measures against voter discrimination; and authoring two oral history volumes on the Great Migration.
DAVID S. CHERNOFF
Attorney and philanthropist David S. Chernoff was deeply committed to Chicago. Born in Chatham and raised in South Shore and Hyde Park, he began his career in corporate law and retired as associate general counsel of the MacArthur Foundation. Chernoff led numerous program-related investments for MacArthur and became its unofficial historian, a role in which he took great pride. He had a donor advised fund at the Trust and supported many organizations, including the Chicago Architecture Center, VanderCook College of Music, Goodcity, Chicago Volunteer Legal Services, and Forefront. He was also an active member and past president of the Cliff Dwellers, an organization for people passionate about the arts. Chernoff firmly believed in making sure people understood the importance of philanthropy and often mentored and encouraged others to get involved at every level.
FRANCES “FRANCIE” COMER
Francie Comer spent her life giving back to the city where she was raised. Comer and her husband, Gary, the founder of Lands’ End clothing company, were devoted to investing in neighborhoods on Chicago’s South Side, where Gary grew up. With the Trust’s counsel, the pair launched a comprehensive community development strategy in Greater Grand Crossing anchored on the Gary Comer Youth Center. They also donated more than $80 million to create Comer Children’s Hospital at the University of Chicago. After Gary’s death, Comer carried on their mission, establishing Gary Comer College Prep, funding the Greater Grand Crossing branch of the Chicago Public Library, and creating High School Smarts, a teen entrepreneurship program. A devotee of the arts, she made the lead contribution for the Art Institute of Chicago’s Modern Wing and endowed the Gary C. and Frances Comer Curator of International Modern Art.
Richard Driehaus rose from humble beginnings on the South Side to become a legendary investor and philanthropist. A devoted civic leader with a passion for architecture and historic preservation, Driehaus reinvested large amounts of his fortune in organizations benefiting the arts, education, and those less fortunate. He was also an energetic founder of several institutions that bear his name. The Richard H. Driehaus Museum, established in 2003, is a testament to Driehaus’ vision to inspire others by providing an immersive space for learning about great works of art, architecture, and design. The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation partners with the MacArthur Foundation to provide general operating support to arts and cultural organizations in Chicago. At the Trust, two donor advised funds established by Driehaus support architecture, historic preservation, and the arts.
Professional fundraiser Brian Lauterbach helped more than 100 nonprofits across the nation develop the resources to advance their missions and grow their capacity. Lauterbach understood the essential role of technology in fundraising success and often served as a bridge between organizations and tech solutions. As founder and CEO of DonorPath, a fundraising consulting firm, he partnered with the Trust to create the Capacity Building Fund, which helped organizations access integrated tools and coaching to strengthen their fundraising operations. He held leadership roles with Network for Good, an organization that provides small nonprofits with fundraising support, and Children First Fund, which raises philanthropic funds to support the success of Chicago Public Schools. From 2019 until his death, Lauterbach was practice director for The Nonprophet Fundraising Group, a group he founded.
Business and civic leader Jim Mabie was a passionate advocate for public media and fine arts broadcasting. He served as trustee of WTTW and WFMT for more than 20 years and chaired both boards from 2014 to 2020. Major projects launched under his chairmanship included the Studs Terkel Radio Archive and the 10 That Changed America national PBS series hosted by Geoffrey Baer. Mabie’s challenge grants were instrumental in securing support for multiple programs, such as the Chicago presentation of Ken Burns’ The National Parks: America’s Best Idea and all three seasons of the WTTW digital series Firsthand. Beyond public media, many arts and human services organizations benefited from his generosity. He was an early supporter of the North Lawndale Employment Network—a recipient of grants from the Trust and We Rise Together, and a Benefit Chicago participant. One of his proudest achievements was co-founding the Chicago High School for the Arts.
BERNARDA “BERNIE” WONG
Bernie Wong was a trailblazing advocate for Chinese Americans and immigrants in Chicago. In 1978, she founded the Chinese American-Service League (CASL) with seed money from the Trust. CASL grew into the largest community-based nonprofit serving Asian Americans in the Midwest, providing thousands of people with counseling, job training, and other services. Over her 38 years as president, Wong launched CASL’s language and music programs and led initiatives to build its senior housing facility and community center. She was the first Asian American appointed to the boards of United Way of Metro Chicago and the Chicago Public Library, and she chaired the Mayor’s Advisory Council on Asian Affairs. Wong received many honors, including the Distinguished Community Leader Award from Mayor
Richard M. Daley, a Woman’s History Month Legacy Award from Mayor Lori Lightfoot, and President Barack Obama’s “Champions of Change” award.