March 5, 2012

Governor Quinn and Mayor Emanuel Announce Appointees to McCormick Place Board

Eight Appointees Will Guide Organization as it Fosters Convention Business and Economic Development Throughout the City and State

Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

Governor Pat Quinn and Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced today their eight appointments for the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority (MPEA) Board. The Governor and the Mayor are each allotted four appointments under state law.

The appointees from Governor Quinn are Carmen Lonstein, Ron Powell, Bob Reiter and Becky Strzechowski.The appointees from Mayor Emanuel are: Roger J. Kiley, Jr.; Dan Hynes; Frank M. Clark, Jr. and Julie Chavez.

“Thanks to the reforms that we worked together to put in place this fall, McCormick Place will continue as a major economic engine in Illinois,” Governor Quinn said. “Our new board unites business and labor to provide the necessary expertise and experience that will attract new tradeshows and compete with the world.”

“McCormick Place is essential to Chicago’s economic future,” said Mayor Emanuel. “I’m committed to making sure we have the best team in place to ensure McCormick Place’s success in attracting conventions and business travelers to Chicago, which create essential jobs for Chicagoans and grow our city’s economy.”

Earlier this month, it was announced that Jack M. Greenberg will serve as the Chairman of the MPEA board. Greenberg is Chairman of the Western Union Company and also serves as Chairman of Chicago-based InnerWorkings, Inc., in addition to being a director of Allstate Corporation and other major corporations. He is a trustee at the Field Museum, the Institute of International Education, and DePaul University, where he previously served as Chairman. He is also a member of the Executive Committee of the Chicago Community Trust.

“I thank the Mayor and Governor for the opportunity to serve, and look forward to working with the Board and Management to build on the solid platform for success that has been created,” Greenberg said. “I hope to provide significant assistance in attracting visitors to McCormick Place and Chicago in order to grow the region’s economy.”

Jim Reilly, who has served as MPEA Trustee for the past 20 months, will stay on as CEO of MPEA.

“The Interim Board, headed by David Mosena, has worked tirelessly in support of Jim Reilly and the MPEA mission, including helping us successfully resolve the McCormick Place labor issues,” said Mayor Emanuel.

MPEA formerly served both McCormick Place and Navy Pier; however, as of July 1, 2011, Navy Pier is operating as a separate not for profit entity. The selections by Governor Quinn are subject to the confirmation by the state Senate. All appointees will be effective immediately.

Information about the Appointees:

Julie Chavez is the Senior Vice President and Community Relations Manager for Bank of America in Chicago. She has worked with Bank of America since 1994, and currently is responsible for leading the bank’s efforts in philanthropy, community and civic engagement, and business development. In her time in Chicago she has worked with a number of organizations, including the National Museum of Mexican Art, of which she is the chair of the board, Metropolitan Family Services, and Chicago United, among others.

Frank M. Clark, Jr. is the retired Chairman and CEO of ComEd, where he oversaw the organization that delivers power to 3.8 million customers across Northern Illinois. He joined ComEd in 1966. During his time in Chicago he has been a civic leader in many regards, sitting on the board of many organizations including the Museum of Science and Industry, DePaul University, the Illinois Manufactures Association, and the Chicago Convention and Tourism Bureau.

Dan Hynes is a senior vice president at Ariel Investments. He served three terms as State Comptroller from 1999 through 2011. In addition to his tenure as the state’s Chief Fiscal Officer, he has also served as Chairman of the State Employees’ Retirement System and has been a trustee of the Illinois State Board of Investment.

Roger J. Kiley, Jr. is an attorney with the law firm Mayer, Brown LLP. He has been a consistent figure throughout Chicago, having served as Chief of Staff to Mayor Richard M. Daley in the 1990s. In his lengthy career he has served in a number of civic and philanthropic roles, including as a judge of the Circuit Court of Illinois and a representative to the 6th Illinois Constitutional Convention. Kiley is a member of the MPEA interim board.

Carmen H. Lonstein is a partner in the Chicago office of Baker and McKenzie and chair of the Financial Restructuring, Creditors’ Rights and Bankruptcy Practice Group in North America. She is a member of the board of the Institute of Puerto Rican Arts and Culture. Lonstein lives in Chicago and has been named an Illinois Leading Lawyer and ranked in Top 50 Leading Women Business Lawyers in Illinois.

Ronald E. Powell serves as the International Vice President of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) International Union. He has led the UFCW Local 881 as president since 1983.

Robert G. Reiter, Jr., serves as the Secretary-Treasurer of the Chicago Federation of Labor.  He is a third-generation member of the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 150 who also sits on the Metropolitan Planning Council's Resource Board and is Treasurer of the Cook County Workforce Investment Board. Reiter earned his law degree from the Chicago-Kent College of Law and his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Eastern Illinois University.

Becky Strzechowski serves as Secretary-Treasurer and Assistant Trustee of Teamsters Local #700 in Park Ridge, where she has worked on behalf of 13,000 public employees. She previously worked for 22 years at Teamsters #727 in Chicago, first as an assistant and eventually becoming the first woman to serve as its vice president and business manager. She holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and a juris doctor from DePaul, the latter of which she earned through night school while working full-time. She sits on the Teamster’s National and Joint Council 25 Women’s committees and is a member of the Illinois State Bar Association.

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