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Terry Mazany spent 16 years with the Chicago Community Trust, the last 13 as president and CEO. He will leave the post in September. | Sun-Times file photo by Rich Hein

Mazany leaving after 13 years leading Chicago Community Trust

SHARE Mazany leaving after 13 years leading Chicago Community Trust
SHARE Mazany leaving after 13 years leading Chicago Community Trust

The Chicago Community Trust will begin the search for just its seventh president in 102 years after Terry Mazany announced he will be stepping down after 13 years of leading the community foundation.

Mazany announced Friday that he will leave his position as president and CEO at the end of September after 16 years, including 13 at the helm, druing which the Trust “doubled in size and more than tripled its grant making,” a statement from the CCT said.

“I am proud of our stellar record delivering on our promise to serve donors who seek to make a difference in the lives of others, and to serve our diverse community by supporting the incredible nonprofit organizations that champion equity and opportunity for all,” Mazany said.

He will be leaving with high praise from others in the philanthropic community.

“Under Terry’s leadership, the Trust has been an exemplar of how a community foundation can work effectively with a global philanthropy with a deep commitment to the city it calls home,” Julia Stasch, president of MacArthur Foundation, said in the statement. “The Trust is an invaluable resource for Chicago and a force behind collaborations that get things done.”

“Terry has made a real and lasting difference for Chicago, transforming the Trust into a dynamic and fast-growing community foundation that has become a significant force for good in Chicago,” Michael Ferro Jr., chairman of the CCT’s executive committee, said in the statement.

In 2011 he also served as the interim chief executive officer of Chicago Public Schools.

The former interim CEO of Chicago Public Schools and member of the board of directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Mazany was also appointed to serve as chairman of the National Assessment Governing Board by former Education Secretary Arne Duncan, a biography on the CCT’s website said.

He spent 15 years working for school districts across the country, including Detroit, Chicago, Baltimore, Oakland and San Francisco. Prior to his work in education, he was an archaeologist and dendrochronologist–tracking human settlements and past climate records using tree-ring chronology. Mazany holds masters degrees in anthropology and business administration from the University of Arizona, and a masters in education policy from the University of Illinois at Chicago.

CCT partners with donors to to transform lives and communities, according to its website. It uses donors’ money to make grants to nonprofits working to improve Chicago. Since being founded in 1915, it has awarded more than $2 billion in grant funds–$229 million in 2016–to more than 11,000 local nonprofits.

“The Trust provides vital resources and leadership for an amazingly broad range of civic institutions and priorities, and it has been an extraordinary privilege to serve our community,” Mazany said. “The Trust is Chicago’s civic treasure and is a very real expression of the character and optimism of Chicagoans, best expressed by Daniel Burnham in 1909 as ‘the spirit of Chicago.'”

The executive committee will begin the search for the next CEO, the seventh leader in its 102-year history.


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