The Chicago Community Trust now Home to Metropolis Strategies, Supporting Agenda to Improve the Region

Mar 03, 2011, 17:19 ET from The Chicago Community Trust from ,Metropolis Strategies

Chicago Metropolis 2020 becomes Metropolis Strategies

CHICAGO, March 3, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- After 12 years of civic leadership, Chicago Metropolis 2020 has become Metropolis Strategies, a supporting organization of The Chicago Community Trust.  The move sustains the vital regional leadership of Chicago Metropolis 2020 and brings to bear the resources of both nonprofit organizations to address the economic challenges posed to the seven-county region by increased global competition.  

As a supporting organization of The Chicago Community Trust, Metropolis Strategies will leverage its civic leadership and program expertise to further implementation of the Trust's new strategic plan – a plan which includes a bold agenda for sustainable economic development.  The Trust, which has seven supporting organizations, is the Chicago region's community foundation with a 95-year history of working with donors, civic leaders, nonprofits and public institutions to improve the quality of life for Chicago area residents.

Metropolis Strategies will be led by several senior executives from Chicago Metropolis 2020, which was created by The Commercial Club of Chicago in 1999 as a project to improve the economic vitality of the region.  One-half of Metropolis Strategies' governing board will include members from The Commercial Club of Chicago. The board will also include members of the Executive Committee of The Chicago Community Trust, as well as officials from labor, government and civic organizations.

"Metropolis Strategies will strengthen the research capacity and knowledge base of the Trust," said Frank M. Clark, Chairman and CEO of ComEd and Chair of the Executive Committee of the Trust.  "By partnering with Metropolis Strategies, the Trust will have access to leadership that has a proven track record in defining critical public policy issues and achieving results by helping to change laws, practices, ideas and public opinion."

"Metropolis Strategies builds on the Chicago Metropolis 2020 history, and benefits from the guidance of several veteran policy advocates who have extensive track records in solving regional problems and advancing evidence-based practices to improve the quality of our communities," said Donald G. Lubin, who is Chairman of the Board of Metropolis Strategies.  "Metropolis Strategies will benefit from being associated with the Trust, a well-known and well-respected community institution."

Lubin is a partner with SNR Denton and formerly served as Chairman of its predecessor, Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal LLP. He was Chairman of the Executive Council of Chicago Metropolis 2020 from 2001 to 2011. Andrew J. McKenna, the Founding Chairman of Chicago Metropolis 2020, will also serve on the board of Metropolis Strategies. Mr. McKenna is Chairman of Schwarz Supply Source and Chairman of McDonald's Corporation Board of Directors.

"Due to the prolonged national economic recession and severe fiscal problems hampering state and local governments, this is a challenging time for our region," said George Ranney, President and CEO of Metropolis Strategies.  "It is also a time of change in political leadership, and these circumstances require strong civic leadership capacity to address the problems and capitalize on the opportunities."

"The Trust looks forward to our partnership with the board and staff of Metropolis Strategies to address critical regional challenges," said Terry Mazany, President and CEO of the Trust.  "The Chicago Community Trust is launching our new strategic plan guided by a vision to support the development of metropolitan Chicago as a thriving global economic center supporting diverse and sustainable communities across the region.  We look to Metropolis Strategies' expertise to help the Trust achieve the objectives of the strategic plan."

George Ranney, Adele Simmons and Paula Wolff are unpaid volunteer Senior Executives with Metropolis Strategies.  Other leaders in the new organization include Frank H. Beal, Executive Director and Jim LaBelle, Vice President.  

The initial agenda for the collaboration of Metropolis Strategies and The Chicago Community Trust includes the following:

Regional Economic Development.  Metropolis Strategies and the Trust are committed to pursuing strategies and actions designed to grow the region's economy and create more employment opportunities. While Chicago has enormous assets and many advantages, it risks losing its momentum without developing a region-wide vision and action plans for building a stronger economy.

Create a Sustainable Region. Chicago's national leadership for sustainability includes the City of Chicago's award winning Climate Action Plan and the creation of the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP), the seven-county area's regional planning agency that combines land use and transportation planning under one roof for the first time.  The Trust and Metropolis Strategies will pursue a sustainability agenda that focuses on policy changes and practices to build a more sustainable region.

Create Safer Communities.  Illinois' criminal justice system is expensive and ineffective.  The Trust and Metropolis Strategies will work to change public policies and practices to improve outcomes for the criminal justice systems and individuals affected by these systems.

NOTE:  A complete board list is available online at:

About The Chicago Community Trust

For 95 years, The Chicago Community Trust, our region's community foundation, has connected the generosity of donors with community needs by making grants to organizations working to improve metropolitan Chicago. In 2010, the Trust, together with its donors, granted more than $100 million to nonprofit organizations. From strengthening schools to assisting local art programs, from building health centers to helping lives affected by violence, the Trust continues to enhance our region. To learn more, please visit the Trust online at

SOURCE The Chicago Community Trust; Metropolis Strategies