Since it opened its doors in 2008, the Chicago Office has worked with more than 500 community-serving congregations representing the religious, racial, ethnic and socio-economic diversity of the City.
The office has built strategic relationships with local faith leaders, lay leaders, community leaders, universities, seminaries, public officials, foundations and philanthropists. These collaborations have been instrumental in the successful local rollouts of Partners’ trainings, programs, research and consulting services, including New Dollars/New Partners, Making Homes for the Arts in Sacred Places, The Halo Effect and, in 2014, Strategic Investment in Sacred Places.
When Partners announced the launch of the Chicago Office, it was with an eye toward adapting our work to serve the city in a way that respected and reflected what makes Chicago unique. From the outset, Partners’ President Bob Jaeger identified three key differences:
- The people of Chicago are highly aware—and proud—of their architecture, perhaps more so than in any other city. The downtown Loop are is laced with magnificent buildings by luminaries such as Louis Sullivan, Daniel Burnham and Mies van der Rohe, and Chicago’s neighborhoods are marked by countless domes and steeples built by waves of immigrants and migrants alike…
- Chicago’s Millennium Park, already a huge success, is only the latest example of a major civic improvement encouraged and led by leaders from both the public and private sectors. The city’s civic leadership is forward-thinking and energetic.
- Chicago’s distinguished history of community organizing makes it a natural place to support and strengthen the role of sacred places as engines of community growth and health. Partners’ message about the “public value” of sacred places — the way they share space to house social service programs and the way they stabilize their immediate neighborhoods — resonates strongly here.
Our commitment to tailoring our work to the needs of diverse communities continues — and has expanded. As the office grows, our work has taken us into the city’s suburbs and collar counties, into neighboring states and across the Midwest. In each congregation and in each community that we work, we commit ourselves to tailoring programs, training, research and consulting services to address local cultures, challenges and opportunities.
To view the list of Chicago Advisory Board members, click here.
For more information, please contact
Gianfranco Grande, Director
866.796.0297, x24 [toll free]
Ellyn Barkley, Program Manager
Laura Schuetz, Consulting Services Associate
866.796.0297, x94 [toll free]
Partners for Sacred Places
401 South LaSalle Street
Chicago, IL 60605
866.796.0297 [toll free]