Chicago United Announces 2019 Business Leaders of Color Honorees

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Chicago United has unveiled its 2019 Business Leaders of Color publication. The biennial publication profiles 50 remarkable, diverse business professionals who help dispel the myth that there are not enough qualified, dynamic, visionary and talented executives of color to step into corporate board directorships in Chicago and beyond.

Corporate Membership and Advocacy Organization Honors Local Executives

Chicago United has unveiled its 2019 Business Leaders of Color publication. The biennial publication profiles 50 remarkable, diverse business professionals who drive transformational change and make an impact in Chicago’s business community. Chosen from a highly competitive field of 182 nominees, the individuals selected for the publication demonstrate a broad range of professional experiences and proven track records of success in numerous industries.

Since its first release in 2003, the Business Leaders of Color publication has served as a resource to increase inclusion of diverse candidates on the boards of Fortune 1,000 corporations. Between 2003 and 2019, the publication has featured 420 individuals who dispel the myth that there are not enough qualified, dynamic, visionary and talented executives of color to step into corporate board directorships in Chicago and beyond. Executives featured in the publications over the years have been elected to more than 300 directorships.

In the publication, each leader tells their story in his or her own words, highlighting not only their business acumen, but their personal journeys and motivations for success. The leaders profiled in the publication are outstanding examples of what it means to overcome obstacles and biases to navigate the corporate landscape and ascend to leadership with boldness and confidence.

Past Business Leaders of Color include former First Lady Michelle Obama, Valerie B. Jarrett, former senior advisor to former President Barack Obama, Jose Luis Prado, chairman and CEO of Evans Food Group Ltd, Don Thompson, retired chief executive officer of McDonald’s Corporation, Andrés Tapia, global diversity and inclusion thought leader at Korn Ferry, Billy Dec, chief executive officer of Rockit Ranch Productions, and Kwame Raoul, Illinois attorney general.

“It’s been remarkable to see the individuals who have been honored over the years evolve into a network of the most influential diverse leaders in Chicago,” said Gloria Castillo, President and CEO of Chicago United. “These leaders are using every bit of their skill, education, rich experience and innovative spirit to boldly lead their teams and their organizations to business success and profitability.”

The 2019 Business Leaders of Color will be honored at the Chicago United Bridge Awards Dinner on Thursday, Nov. 9, 2019 at the Hilton Chicago. To reserve tickets or tables for the event, contact Gail Arrigo, Chicago United Director of Operations, at 312-977-3066 or

To download the 2019 Business Leaders of Color publication, go to,

2019 Business Leaders of Color

AURORA ABELLA AUSTRIACO, Partner/Shareholder, Valentine Austriaco and Bueschel, P.C.

ISAAC AKRIDGE, Vice President of Operations, Exelon

ANNE L. ALONZO, President and Chief Executive Officer, American Egg Board

VICTOR ALVARADO, Vice President, Global Manufacturing Petrochemicals, BP

TERI ARVESU, Vice President of Content, Univision Chicago

DANIELLE BROWN, Vice President and Chief Information Officer, Brunswick Corporation

LEVOI K. BROWN, Managing Director, BMO Wealth Management

JOHN H. CAMPBELL, Senior Vice President, Managing Director –Wealth Planning, U.S. Bank Private Wealth Management

CARLOS R. CARDENAS, Group Senior Vice President, Wintrust Commercial Banking

MARTA CARREIRA-SLABE, Americas Chief Compliance Officer, Chief Counsel – Latin America, Aon plc

HAMILTON CHANG, Chief Executive Officer, Ballparks of America

MANUEL CUEVAS-TRISÁN, Former Chief Human Resources Officer and Corporate Vice President, Employment Law and Data Protection, Motorola Solutions, Inc.

REMBERTO DEL REAL, Chief Marketing Officer, DeVry University

JOSEPH DOMINGUEZ Chief Executive Officer, ComEd, An Exelon Company

MIGUEL EDWARDS, Chief Information Officer, Kemper Life and Health

TALITA RAMOS ERICKSON, General Counsel (Americas) & Chief Executive Officer (Restaurants), Barilla Group

KIMBERLY EVANS, Senior Vice President, North America Head of Private Capital Administration, Northern Trust

JOSE FELICIANO, System Vice President, Environmental Services and Linen Distribution, Advocate Aurora Health Care

LORI FLORES ROLFSON, Vice President – Operations, Peoples Gas & North Shore Gas

MARION K. GROSS, Senior Vice President and Chief Supply Chain Officer, North America, McDonald’s Corporation

LEO HARMON, Managing Director, Mesirow Financial

DOUG HARRIS, Chief Executive Officer, The Kaleidoscope Group

STEPHANIE HICKMAN, President and Chief Executive Officer, Trice Construction Company

ADRIENNE D. HUGHES, Associate Market Executive, Bank of America Merrill Lynch

FRANCIS O. IDEHEN, Chief Operating Officer, GCM Grosvenor

PARRISH IVY, Principal, Deloitte Tax LLP

PRAN JHA, Partner, Sidley Austin LLP

KEVIN JOHNSON, Regional Chief Operating Officer, Aon plc

TOMOKO KIZAWA, Partner, Deloitte


BRIAN LEE, Design Partner, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill

JUAN LEYVA, General Manager, LondonHouse Chicago

VINCENT A. MARIN, Global Chief Information Officer, Sidley Austin LLP

SANDRA CORDOVA MICEK, President and Chief Executive Officer, WTTW and WFMT

DAVID OLIVENCIA, Managing Director, Accenture Cloud, Health and Public Service, Accenture

REBECCA MARTINEZ O’MARA, Vice President of Service and Solutions, Grundfos

NICHOLE OWENS, Vice President of Customer Channels, ComEd, An Exelon Company

SANKAT PATEL, Senior Vice President and Treasury Management National Sales Director, Fifth Third Bank

REAZ RASUL, General Manager, Global Acute Therapies, Baxter International Inc.

MICHELE BAKER RICHARDSON, Founder and President, Higher Education Advocates, LLC

SUSAN MARIE SANTIAGO, Senior Vice President, Miraval Resorts, Americas, Hyatt Hotels Corporation

KARRIEM SHAKOOR, Senior Vice President – Chief Information Officer, UL

OMER SULTAN, Vice President, Finance, Northwestern Memorial HealthCare

LYNN SUTTON, Owner/Managing Principal, Kairos Consulting Worldwide

RUSSELL E. TONEY, President, Specialty Products Group, Dover Corporation

MANIKA M. TURNBULL, Vice President, Workforce and Business Engagement, Health Care Service Corporation

PALLAVI VERMA, Senior Managing Director – US Midwest, Accenture

CHAD E. WALKER, Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary, Morton Salt, Inc.

ROOPA WEBER, Chief Marketing Officer, Ariel Investments

TIANYI JOE ZHU, Managing Partner, Playground Capital


About Chicago United

Chicago United is a corporate membership and advocacy organization whose mission is to achieve parity in economic opportunity for people of color by advancing multiracial leadership in corporate governance, executive level management, and business diversity. Founded in 1968, the organization is focused on transforming the Chicago region into the most inclusive business ecosystem in the nation by engaging the top publicly and privately held corporations in leading talent management and inclusive diversity practices. Chicago United’s signature programs include its Business Leaders of Color publication, which showcases a diverse pool of corporate director candidates, the Five Forward Initiative™, designed to invigorate job creation in communities of color by increasing the scale of large Minority Business Enterprises in the Chicago region, Inside Inclusion featuring the Corporate Diversity Profile, and the Corporate Inclusion Institute, the first-ever citywide business talent development program.

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Kimberly Crooms
Chicago United
+1 (312) 977-3064
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