Our Fellows

Ideal candidates have demonstrated leadership qualities in their professional lives, have a history of volunteering and civic engagement, and possess the passion and drive needed to tackle major issues facing the Greater Chicago region. Candidates must be ages 30-45 as of July 1, 2018. All candidates are required to be nominated and supported by their sponsoring organization, and seconded by at least one additional nominator.

Leadership Greater Chicago's Fellows Program is an intensive, year-long engagement that requires significant investment from both the Fellow and his or her sponsoring organization. Acceptance into the Leadership Greater Chicago Fellows Program is contingent on a commitment to the following program requirements:

  • Attendance at the Opening Retreat (September), Mid-Year Dinner (January), and Closing Retreat (June);
  • Attendance at all eight Friday Sessions (Usually the first Friday of the month, excluding holidays, October – May);
  • Attendance at five of the seven Leadership Breakfasts (monthly, October  – May);
  • Active participation in recommended/optional programming, including discussion groups, site visits, cultural events, and social activities;
  • A financial contribution from the sponsoring organization ($17,500 for private sponsors and large nonprofits; amount scaled for smaller nonprofits, government, educational institutions, and entrepreneurs); and
  • An individual contribution of $1,500.

Fellows Year in Review

Our Fellows spend 10 months exploring complex issues through a series of retreats, seminars, and community visits. As an example, the 2018 Program Year consists of the following:


Opening Retreat


Community Awareness


Economic Perspective: Global to Local


Race, Identity, and Inclusion


Housing and Infrastructure






Crime and Violence


Leadership in Action


Closing Retreat

Past/Sample Leadership Breakfast Speakers

John Rogers, Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, and Chief Investment Officer, Ariel Investments LLC

Former Deputy Mayors Andrea Zopp and Steve Koch, moderated by Civic Consulting Alliance CEO Brian Fabes

Anita Alvarez, Former Cook County State’s Attorney

Patrick Fitzgerald, Former U.S. Attorney, Northern District of Illinois

Francis Cardinal George

Terry Mazany, Former Chief Executive Officer, Chicago Community Trust

Ronald S. Burt, Herbert Williams Professor of Sociology and Strategy, University of Chicago

Past/Sample Cultural Events

Stony Island Arts Bank - Rebuild Foundation

Black Ensemble Theater

Goodman Theatre

Joffrey Ballet

Kartemquin Films

Lookingglass Theater

to the 

The Fellow Program creates lifelong partnerships and develops community awareness among leaders in the Chicago metropolitan area.

Learn More

Contact Us

Leadership Greater Chicago
111 East Wacker Drive
Suite 1220
Chicago, IL 60601
(312) 565-0300

About Us

Leadership Greater Chicago is the region’s premier convener, connector and mobilizer of bold leaders, building capacity across the private, nonprofit and public sectors to effect transformative civic impact in Greater Chicago.