Jack Lavin | President & CEO
Jack Lavin is the sixth President and Chief Executive Officer of the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce since the organization’s founding in 1904. He has more than thirty years of financial and management experience in both the public and private sectors. Throughout his career, Jack has focused on economic and business development in order to create jobs and improve the quality of life for people in Chicago and Illinois.
Jack served as Director of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, the State’s economic and workforce development agency. He revamped and rebranded the organization to incorporate technology and entrepreneurship into the overall mission. He worked closely at the time with the Chicagoland Chamber to incubate the Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center and developed an early stage venture capital fund, which led to the founding of 1871. His work with the Chamber also established the award-winning Disabilityworks program, which provides job training for people with disabilities and promotes their hiring.
Jack also served as Chief of Staff for Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, and Chief Operating Officer of the State of Illinois. He led the passage and implementation of the largest capital infrastructure bill in Illinois history and was responsible for managing the operations of the Governor’s office and all State government agencies. Prior to that, he served in financial leadership positions for Abbott Laboratories and a private restaurant company.
Jack serves on boards for the Chicago Children’s Theatre, the University YMCA, and the Chicago Leadership Alliance. He has also served on the City of Chicago’s 2016 Olympic Bid Committee, Navy Pier’s Long Range Strategic Plan Committee as Co-Chair, and the BIO Convention Steering Committee. Jack is a strong advocate for people with disabilities. He led a Task Force for Mayor Daley on Special Education in the Chicago Public Schools and serves on the advisory board of the Adult Down Syndrome Center.
Jack holds an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, a master’s degree in International Relations from the University of Chicago, and a bachelor’s degree in Finance from the University of Illinois. He lives in Chicago with his wife and three children.