June 20, 2019

Mayor Lightfoot Appoints Mellody Hobson To Serve as Vice Chair of World Business Chicago

Hobson to provide leadership on organization’s focus of inclusive economic growth

Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

CHICAGO—Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot today announced the appointment of Mellody Hobson as vice chair of World Business Chicago (WBC). Hobson is the chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Ariel Investment Trust and the president of Ariel Investments. She is a founding member of WBC, and will join Mayor Lightfoot, chair of WBC, in executing the organization’s mission of driving a robust economic growth strategy in partnership with the business community.

"I am thrilled to appoint Mellody Hobson, a prominent business leader from Chicago, to serve as the vice chair of World Business Chicago, and would like to thank Michael Sacks for his service as vice chair,” said Mayor Lightfoot. “As a distinguished executive in the business world and a dedicated servant to her community, Mellody has experienced firsthand the important role that businesses play in ensuring that as they thrive, so do our neighboring communities. Mellody will bring a wealth of experience to WBC's work as a major driver of business growth for all of Chicago."

As vice chair, Hobson will provide leadership for WBC to continue to accomplish its mission of driving inclusive economic growth and job creation, supporting businesses, and promoting Chicago as a major global city. She will work with the business community to ensure collaboration to execute Mayor Lightfoot’s vision for building a Chicago that is stronger, fairer, and more prosperous for every resident in every neighborhood.

“I am honored to join Mayor Lightfoot and World Business Chicago to advance their mission of inclusive economic growth throughout Chicago,” said Hobson. “Chicago is a leading global business hub, and I look forward to partnering with our corporate and civic communities to ensure that the continued growth and prosperity of our downtown district extends to all of Chicago’s neighborhoods.”

Hobson has been an advocate for investor education and serves in a number of community leadership positions. She serves as chair of After School Matters and recently completed her term as chair of The Economic Club of Chicago.  In addition, she is co-chair of the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art and is a board member of the George Lucas Education Foundation. She is also vice chair of the Board of Starbucks Corporation and a director of JPMorgan Chase. Hobson is a member of the Rockefeller Foundation Board of Trustees, and serves on the executive committee of the Investment Company Institute’s board of governors.

“Mellody Hobson is a tireless advocate for Chicago, and we are thrilled to welcome her as vice chair of World Business Chicago,” said Andrea Zopp, president and CEO of WBC. “As a leading voice for economic inclusivity, along with her corporate work and civic leadership, Mellody is the perfect person to support our work towards a Chicago economy that works for all of its citizens. She will be a great addition to build on the work done under outgoing vice chair Michael Sacks, whose dedication and commitment has been integral to World Business Chicago’s success over the past eight years.”

WBC’s Board of Directors consists of 87 Chicago corporate and civic leaders. Michael J. Sacks, chairman and CEO of GCM Grosvenor, served as past vice chairman since 2011, and will remain on the board of directors.

"I applaud Mayor Lightfoot for making Mellody a partner in her commitment to inclusive economic growth by appointing her to serve in the vice chair position,” said Sacks, outgoing vice chair. "I have no doubt that together they will ensure the organization is a valuable partner in driving growth and equality for Chicago, and I look forward to staying on to support their efforts.”