November 4, 2019
Helene D. Gayle – President & CEO – The Chicago Community Trust
Helene D. Gayle is President and CEO of The Chicago Community Trust, one of the nation’s leading community foundations. The Trust works with donors, nonprofits, community leaders and residents to lead and inspire philanthropic efforts that improve the quality of life for the residents of the Chicago region. As the seventh executive in the Trust’s history, Dr. Gayle is responsible for establishing the priorities of the Trust and building positive engagement with the Trust’s diverse family of stakeholders in ways that advance the organization’s mission and goals.
Prior to joining the Trust, Dr. Gayle was the inaugural CEO of McKinsey Social Initiative, a nonprofit that brings together varied stakeholders to address complex global social challenges. She was instrumental in setting the organization’s direction and building its first program, Generation, designed to increase youth employment in India, Kenya, Mexico, Spain and the United States.
Named one of Forbes’ “100 Most Powerful Women,” Foreign Policy magazine’s “Top 100 Global Thinkers,” and Newsweek’s top 10 “Women in Leadership,” she has been featured by media outlets as diverse as the New York Times, Washington Post, ForbesWoman, Glamour, Essence, O Magazine, National Public Radio and CNN. She has also authored numerous articles on global and domestic public health issues, poverty alleviation, gender equality and social justice.
Her contributions have been honored with awards from Columbia University, Barnard College, Spelman College, Bryn Mawr College, the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases, the U.S. Public Health Service and AARP, among others. She has received 13 honorary degrees and holds faculty appointments at the University of Washington and Emory University.