As we kick off a new fiscal year, I’ve been reflecting on how far we’ve come. Fiscal year 2019 was a big one for us. Personally, it was the year my family and I returned to Chicago, a city we love. While we’ve always been thrilled to be back, I have to say, we’re even more confident in our decision this time of year. My boys are loving summer in the city.

As with any area, the city has seen changes over the years. One thing I’ve been encouraged to see remain the same is people’s love for Chicago. We’re proud to call this city and the surrounding suburbs home, but there’s no doubt that our home is facing some tough challenges. A family in one neighborhood can have vastly different outcomes than a family living a zip code or two over. That’s why it’s crucial that we come together at the neighborhood level to make sure that every person has access to the resources they need to succeed.

It’s hard work, but we’ve got the team in place that’s up for the task. At the end of the year, Betsy Hughes joined our team as Senior Vice President and Chief Development Officer.  A leader in the philanthropy community, we’re excited to have her drive the fundraising efforts that support the great work of our community partners. For the past two years, under the leadership of Bob Sullivan, Regional Chairman of Fifth Third Bank, our Campaign Cabinet has made great headway. We’re thankful for Bob’s dedicated service and are excited to announce that Dave Casper, President and CEO of BMO Harris Bank NA, will be taking up the mantel this year.

We’re set up for success, and we’re already showing that we can deliver. Our own Jose Rico, Chief Partnerships and Initiatives Officer, was recently selected as a 2019 McCormick Foundation Executive Fellow, highlighting his wealth of expertise and United Way’s continued focus on early childhood education. And, just last week, we had the opportunity to co-host a collective impact breakfast panel, which was an engaging conversation featuring a great cross-sector perspective.

Our new fiscal year is off to a strong start, but we can’t do it without YOU. The donor, the volunteer, the community leader, the advocate – it takes all of us, working as a united front to build stronger neighborhoods. We’re looking forward to what this new year has in store, and we’re thrilled that we get to do this work in partnership with you.


Letter from the President_Sean Garrett

Sean Garrett
President and CEO
United Way of Metro Chicago