City Club of Chicago: The Future of Social Services in Illinois

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Marca Bristo, Wendy DuBoe, and Ric Estrada discuss the future of social services in Illinois at the City Club of Chicago, March 28, 2016 (City Club of Chicago)

March 28, 2016

The Future of Social Services in Illinois – Marca Bristo, Wendy DuBoe, and Ric Estrada

Marca Bristo is a nationally and internationally distinguished leader in the disability rights movement. As president and chief executive officer of Access Living of Metropolitan Chicago, Bristo is the leader of one of the nation’s foremost disability rights organizations. For over 30 years, she has directed Access Living, one of the first centers for independent living in the United States.

As the former president of the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL), Bristo worked with the broader civil rights community on the Civil Rights Restoration Act of 1987, the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

Bristo has received numerous awards and recognitions, including the Distinguished Service Award of the President of the United States; the Americans with Disabilities Act Award for her role in the creation and passage of the law; and the Henry B. Betts Laureate. Bristo also was named by the Chicago Sun-Times as one of Chicago’s “100 Most Powerful Women” and by Crain’s Chicago Business as one of Chicago’s “100 Most Influential Women.” In 2007, Chicago Magazine named her one of the seven “Outstanding Chicagoans” of the year.

Bristo holds two degrees: a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from Beloit College, and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Rush College of Nursing. She lives in Chicago with her husband Bob Kettlewell, and has two children, Sam and Madeline.

Wendy DuBoe serves as the President and Chief Executive Officer of United Way of Metropolitan Chicago (UWMC), the largest private funder of health and human services in the greater Chicago region.

Since joining United Way of Metropolitan Chicago in 2003, DuBoe has held positions of Chief Strategy & Integration Officer, Chief Community Investment Officer and Chief Operating Officer prior to her current position as President and CEO. She has lead the regional merger of 54 local offices into one metropolitan system, unifying staff and volunteers, integrating investments and operations and reducing operating costs by 20% across the territory. DuBoe has been instrumental in transforming United Way’s community investment approach from broad human service funding to more strategic and focused investment.

DuBoe was a member of Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s 2011 Transition Team and currently serves as a commissioner of the Governor’s Human Services Commission. She chairs the Board of FEMA’s Emergency Food and Shelter Program for Chicago and Cook County. She is a member of the Executive Council of Thrive, a member of the Mayor’s Commission on Public Safety and a member of the International MENSA Society.

DuBoe graduated cum laude with a BA in Economics and Psychology from the University of Michigan, earned her MA in International Economics and International Relations from Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies and received a degree in Economics from the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Ricardo (Ric) Estrada was named President and CEO of Metropolitan Family Services (MFS), one of Chicago’s first and largest human services agencies, in March 2011.

During his tenure at MFS, Estrada has led the expansion of the agency’s reach by 25,000 (currently totaling 68,000), and overseen the growth of the agency’s budget from $32 million to $50 million. Estrada spearheaded efforts to secure funding to establish an early childhood facility on Chicago’s Southwest Side. In 2015, he also led the launch of the Campaign to Mpower Families, a $25 million initiative to reach more families and strengthen Metropolitan’s communities with better services and an even stronger organization.

Estrada has more than two decades of leadership experience in human services, philanthropy and government. His record of civic and community involvement includes appointment to the Chicago Early Learning Executive Council; the University of Illinois Board of Trustees; Board of Directors of Leadership Greater Chicago; and Board member of the Woods Fund of Chicago.

Estrada’s educational background is grounded in social services and business, including an MBA from the University of Illinois at Chicago, an M.A. in Policy and Administration from the University of Chicago, and a B.S. in Psychology from Loyola University of Chicago.

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