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Business UNusual

Chicago companies invented many of today’s business practices—now C Suite leaders are reinventing them.

Companies are replacing business as usual with new ways to align business operations and equity in hiring, real estate development, procurement, finance and other areas to achieve great results

Advancing Business UNusual at our September Meeting in Chatham

The Corporate Coalition met at Discover's Shine Bright Community Center, call center and technology hub in Chatham. The inspiring meeting provided all who attended the opportunity to experience Business UNusual in action.

Forging New Pathways in STEM for Chicago Students

University of Chicago and City Colleges worked together to form a formal internship program to forge new pathways for students in STEM. “This is an opportunity to show that there are people from a variety of backgrounds and education levels that can have a place at the University of Chicago,” said Kelli Chávez, Associate Director of Community Development Initiatives at UChicago's Office of Civic Engagement.

Working Across Your Supply Chain for Collective Change

Relativity launched Justice for Change, an initiative that offers RelativityOne software (built on Microsoft Azure) free of charge to organizations—including existing customers—leading pro bono cases with a focus on racial and social justice. Justice for Change has supported over 60 justice-oriented matters to date.

Re-envisioning Job Postings to Give a Fair Chance to All Applicants

The University of Chicago set a goal of expanding hiring from nine surrounding neighborhoods but workforce-ready residents believed they were ineligible to be employed due to a criminal record. So leaders in the Office of Civic Engagement worked to spread awareness of the university’s fair chance hiring policy internally and externally.

Discover revamped its background investigation process to reduce barriers to hiring

In 2016, background investigations for prospective Discover employees were handled by placement agencies, outsourced, or managed through individual departments. Although this is a common approach among large companies, Discover’s leadership recognized that consolidating the effort under a single team would ensure a more consistent, equitable, and regulatory-compliant process.

Looking Forward, Looking Back at February Member Meeting

Managing Director Brian Fabes thanked members for their investment in our shared purpose to use Chicago firms’ brainpower and economic strength to build a regional economy that works for all at our first member meeting in February 2023 hosted by Sidley Austin LLP.

Rethinking an employee perk uplifts local restaurants and the community

Discover found catering lunch daily from restaurants near their new Chatham call center was a win-win for front-line customer care agents and the community.

Accenture and Chicago Apprentice Network Create Career Pathways

Accenture has powered its U.S. hiring in recent years by removing degree requirements for nearly half its roles. Diversifying hiring sources has led to a more inclusive culture and attracted top talent from varied backgrounds, the firm's Mike Chiappetta says.

Google Career Certificate holders find career path at Deloitte

Increasingly Google Certificates -- instead of degrees -- are creating an inclusive new hiring pipeline that’s also an avenue for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Deloitte and many other employers.

Rethinking Partnering

DEI principles inform every aspect of the business at SDI Presence, including how they work with subcontractors — a term SDI replaced with the word "partners" early on.

Fifth Third Goes Beyond “Writing the Check”

As one of the first financial institutions to establish a foundation, Fifth Third has a long history of philanthropy. But to make transformative progress toward equity, especially in communities that have experienced sustained disinvestment, they knew they needed a different strategy.

From Supplier Diversity to Business Diversity: Northern Trust Expands Procurement Beyond MBE/WBE Owners

Protiviti partners with INROADS for an inclusive recruiting process

HC3 Podcast: Business Unusual with Brian Fabes, Corporate Coalition of Chicago

In the premiere episode of the HC3 Podcast from Health Care Council of Chicago, HC3 Co-Founder David Smith and HC3 Executive Director Meghan Phillipp sit down with Brian Fabes, Managing Director of the Corporate Coalition.

‘Why we should give people with a criminal record a fair chance at getting hired’—new op-ed in Chicago Tribune

In an op-ed posted by the Chicago Tribune Feb. 21, Jeffrey Korzenik, author of Untapped Talent, and our own Managing Director Brian Fabes argue that Chicago firms can help lead the drive for fair chance hiring to boost a regional economy that works for all.

P33 and World Business Chicago Form Coalition to Help Laid-Off Tech Workers with H-1B Visas Find New Jobs in Chicago

The Chicago H-1B Connect Coalition brings together the Commercial Club of Chicago, 1871, the Executives' Club of Chicago, the Chicago Chamber of Commerce, the Corporate Coalition of Chicago, and MATTER, along with Fortune 500 corporations and rapidly scaling, well-funded startups to help support and to retain highly skilled and valuable international talent.

Urban Institute: Exploring Capital Flows in Chicago

'Depending on where you look, Chicago can be highly invested and affluent or it can be disinvested and declining,' researchers at Urban Institute write in this useful take on the regional economy as a whole.

RFP for an Evaluation & Learning Partner

The Corporate Coalition of Chicago is seeking a learning partner to lead its data collection, dissemination, evaluation, and learning strategy.

Chicagoland Workforce Funders Alliance celebrates 10 years of impact

The Chicago Workforce Funder Alliance recently celebrated their 10th anniversary, and last month they shared a video that highlights the Alliance's approach to its work and impact over the past decade. Check it out- and congratulations to all involved in this work!

Discover opens Chatham customer care and community center

Congrats to Co-chair Roger Hochschild & Discover on the grand opening last week of the Chatham Customer Care Center, at 85th Street and Cottage Grove Avenue. The new call center puts 1,000 jobs in the community and it includes the 13,000 square foot Shine Bright Community Center.

A vibrant, prosperous economy calls for a new approach to business

Hear from our Co-chairs Roger Hochschild of Discover and Maurice Smith of HCSC outlining their rationale for bringing jobs directly to Chicago's underinvested neighborhoods with their partner Leon Walker of DL3 Realty.

How inadequate infrastructure fails some Chicagoans

Investing and transforming underserved neighborhoods requires collective action and coordination between communities, government agencies, AND the private sector.

For scalable impact, bigger and bolder actions required

CDFIs can only produce a greater, scalable impact if corporations and others take bold actions to realize all of the expressed good intentions of the last two years.

'Coalition of the willing' meets a community in need

An organization backed by the private and nonprofit sectors, the Corporate Coalition of Chicago is working to bring businesses to areas lacking investment and the tools to get it.

Chicago companies step up racial equity efforts to mark anniversary of George Floyd's death

A new initiative is calling on businesses to work with more minority-owned firms and invest in underserved communities.

Leaders in Chicago’s Business Community Announce Actions Underway to Advance Racial Equity

More than 25 businesses ensure their actions match their words.

‘5/25 Move to Action’ pushing Chicago businesses to keep racial reckoning commitments'

On May 25, the anniversary of George Floyd’s murder by a Minneapolis police officer, the Chicago Community Trust and the Corporate Coalition of Chicago launched “5/25 Move to Action,” pushing businesses to address systemic racism.

Work of the Corporate Coalition- February 2023 Member Meeting
Interviews of Corporate Coalition members during our first meeting of the year highlight our shared vision and values for work to build equity.
31 October, 2022
Business UNUsual at the Blue Door Neighborhood Center Morgan Park
At our September member meeting, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois highlighted their firm's Morgan Park Blue Door community service center as a physical presence in the community and participation in the Corporate Coalition, helping to model Business UNUsual practices.
30 August, 2022
Chicagoland Workforce Funder Alliance celebrates 10 years of impact
The Chicago Workforce Funder Alliance celebrated their 10th anniversary, and last month they shared a video that highlights the Alliance's approach to its work and impact over the past decade.
16 July, 2020
A Conversation with Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot
Lori E. Lightfoot, Mayor of Chicago, spoke to the Executives’ Club of Chicago to discuss building a COVID-19 Recovery Task Force to recover from the devastating impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
30 September, 2020
Chicago's Corporate Coalition: How Businesses are Working Together to Address Long-Standing Inequities
Brian Fabes, Cutis Reed of J.P. Morgan Chase, Audrey Williams-Lee of Hyatt Hotels Corporation, and Deputy Mayor Samir Mayekar spoke to the Executives’ Club of Chicago about the Corporate Coalition and its goals.
29 July, 2021
Acting Collectively to Support Transformational Community Change
Julia Stasch (Senior Advisor), Denean Pillar-Jackson (Founding Executive Director of the Chicago Resiliency Network), Eileen Mitchell (President of AT&T Illinois) and Eric Patton (Senior Advisor) spoke at ChamberRVA Shared Values forum to discuss the Coalition’s work and the power of acting collectively with other leaders to make region wide progress.
19 January, 2021
Why We All Win with an Equitable Recovery
Gloria Castillo of We Rise Together, David Doig of Chicago Neighborhood Initiatives, Martin H. Nesbitt of The Vistria Group, Anne Vela-Wagner of The Mars Wrigley Foundation, and Helene Gayle of The Chicago Community Trust conducted a roundtable on equitable recovery in Chicago with Executives’ Club.
7 May, 2021
Closing Capital Gaps
Gloria Castillo of We Rise Together, Calvin Holmes of Chicago Community Loan Fund, Curtis Reed of J.P. Morgan Chase, and Lyneir Richardson of Chicago TREND hosted a panel discussion, moderated by Julia Stasch, around ways to close capital gaps that create barriers to catalytic community development.
2 November, 2020
Purpose Driven Implications of a Segregated City
Kendra Freeman of the Metropolitan Planning Council, Paul C. Carlisle of Wintrust, Alden Loury of WBEZ, and Nadia Quarles of the University of Chicago spoke to The Executives’ Club of Chicago to discuss the implications of Chicagoland’s segregation.
11 May, 2021
Discover on Need for Equitable Corporate Commitment to Underinvested Urban Areas
Roger Hochschild, Chief Executive Officer and President of Discover Financial Services, spoke to the Executives’ Club of Chicago on the need for equitable corporate commitment to underinvested urban areas and how Discover is leading by example opening their new call center in Chatham, creating 1000+ jobs.
26th October, 2020
Invest South/West Anniversary
Lori E. Lightfoot, Mayor of Chicago, celebrates the 1 year anniversary and accomplishments of Invest South/West.
Virtual Event

Showcasing Promising Talent Solutions 2023

Join the Corporate Coalition, the Executives’ Club, and our 10 partner organizations on Thursday, 9/28 from 12:00 - 1:00 PM for our third annual virtual Workforce Showcase. The Showcase is a business-to-business discussion to help companies create a more equitable, thriving workforces. Participants hear directly from and talk with business leaders who have implemented new practices and those exploring new challenges. This year's showcase includes new topics and new takes on previous topics, for example integrating young workers into the workplace, getting started with fair chance hiring, new models for tech talent, AI in the talent landscape, and more. Expect insights, connections, and practical information to enrich your thinking and inspire action.

Virtual Event

Signature Series - Second Chance Hiring Isn’t Charity, It’s Good Business

Join us for a conversation focused on the regulatory and reputation concerns that come with leveraging the often-untapped talent of those with criminal records. Jeff Korzenik, Chief Economist at Fifth Third Commercial Bank and author of “Untapped Talent: How Second Chance Hiring Works for Your Business and the Community,” will moderate this conversation. Registration & Networking: 4:00pm-4:30pm CT | Program: 4:30pm-5:30pm CT | Reception: 5:30pm-6:00pm CT Fifth Third Bank | 222 South Riverside Plaza, 32nd Floor, Chicago, IL 60606

Virtual Event

Dr. Bruce Perry: Emotional Regulation & Resilience in the Workplace

Dr. Bruce Perry will be joining the Chicago Resiliency Network virtually on Friday, March 3rd from 12:00 - 1:30 PM to discuss emotional regulation & resilience in the workplace.

Virtual Event

Showcasing Promising Talent Solutions

Hear directly from companies including Alinea, Discover, Eaton, Everywhere Wireless, Freedman Seating Company, JLL, Pete's Fresh Market, S&C Electric. They will be discussing new strategies for fair chance hiring, utilizing front-line managers as a key to retention, employer role in support services, becoming an employer of choice, retaining youth of color, public commitments spurring action, utilizing civic engagement to build the talent pipeline, and much more.