Board of Directors
Marc J. Lane
Law Offices of Marc J. Lane, President and Attorney – Board Chairman
Marc J. Lane, a nationally recognized business and tax attorney and financial adviser, practices law at The Law Offices of Marc J. Lane, P.C. in Chicago (www.MarcJLane.com). An innovator in helping social enterprises, foundations, corporations, investors, lenders and philanthropists leverage capital to maximize financial results while driving positive social change, he is the author of 35 books including Social Enterprise: Empowering Mission-Driven Entrepreneurs (American Bar Association) and The Mission-Driven Venture: Business Solutions to the World’s Most Vexing Social Problems (John Wiley and Sons).
Director, U.S. Community Affairs – Board President, Co-Chair Marketing & Programming Committees
Wendy Raymer is a Director in BMO Harris Bank’s Community Affairs department. In this role, she is accountable for the strategy and execution of BMO Financial Group’s corporate philanthropy initiatives within the U.S. Wendy enjoys the challenges and rewards of nonprofit funding and attends many community and industry events throughout the year. She welcomes opportunities to network and connect with others in the nonprofit, CSR and social enterprise sectors. Wendy earned a BA degree in History from University of Illinois at Chicago. She is a Commissioner on the Cook County Commission on Social Innovations and currently serves on the boards of Instituto del Progreso Latino and the Social Enterprise Alliance Chicago Chapter.
President of Hess Advantage, Inc. – Board Vice President, Co-Chair Marketing & Programming Committees
John Hess is President of Hess Advantage Inc, providing tax incentive administration and employer of record solutions to for-profit companies and non-profit organizations nationwide. Mr. Hess assists employers in taking advantage of tax incentives available for hiring qualified employees. In addition, his experience with transitional jobs, subsidized wage programs and alternative staffing organizations has enabled non-profit organizations to successfully manage employer risk and increase placement outcomes. Mr. Hess is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Economics. He is currently on the Boards of Directors of the Social Enterprise Alliance Chicago Chapter and PPRE-Forevergreen and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Asset Builders Community Development Corporation.
CiTTA Partnership, Founder, CEO and Chief Consultant – Board Treasurer
Belinda Li is Founder, CEO & Chief Consultant of CiTTA Partnership (www.cittapartnership.com), a management consulting firm that helps social enterprises become more sustainable and create greater social impact by improving their business models and practices. Belinda’s expertise includes: strategic planning, business modeling and planning, market analysis, and project management. She has helped social enterprises, both non-profit and for-profit entities, across various sectors, including: higher education, early childhood development, human services, sustainable homeownership, clean energy and energy efficiency, smart grid, and more. Belinda holds an MBA degree from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, and a Ph.D. degree in Medical Physics from the University of London, UK.
John W. Pfeiffer
Partner, Open Door Advisors - Board Secretary
John is a social impact leader with more than 25 years of experience in nonprofit, government and consulting organizations. He is a Partner at Open Door Advisors, a consultancy focused on helping social impact organizations achieve greater scale, sustainability and impact. Previously, John served as First Deputy Commissioner of the Chicago Department of Family and Support Services; CEO of Inspiration Corporation; COO of Chicago Cares; Chief Development Officer of Chicago House; Director of Individual Philanthropy at Feeding America; and Senior Consultant with KPMG LLP. John holds a BA in Economics from Northwestern University and an MPA from Columbia University. He serves as board secretary of the Center for Housing and Health at the AIDS Foundation of Chicago and as a board member of the Back Office Cooperative and Social Enterprise Alliance – Chicago; he previously served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Chicago Low Income Housing Trust Fund, the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, and Reeling, the Chicago LGBTQ+ International Film Festival.
Senior Product Manager, Caremerge
Mike Hyzy, Senior Product Manager at Caremerge in Chicago, Illinois, is an entrepreneur, product manager, and artist. His passion for creating technology has brought about sustainable impacts to health outcomes. Mike’s focus is on the development of human centered design, behavioral economic research, and agile software to create measurable results. For more than 10 years, Mike has worked in management and has consulted to several startups. His services cover everything from the idea, to implementation, and then to growth. Mike has a BA in economics, and independently studied graphic design, video production, and software development.
Mike’s specialties include: project and product management, creative services, consumer behavior, price theory, digital marketing strategy, web development, entrepreneurship and public speaking. When not working, Mike enjoys traveling, cooking, getting involved in the film community, golfing and playing volleyball.
James L. Miles, Sr., PhD., DMin., EDFP
Senior Community and Economic Development Strategist, Faith-based Leader, Public Policy & Population Health Practitioner
Dr. Miles’ primary passion is to help leaders and communities, fulfill their vision for positive transformations and collaborative empowerment that drives social, cultural, and economic development for all. Dr. Miles currently works with Veterans throughout the Greater Chicago area, public health organizations across northern Illinois, faith-based institutions, universities, community health and engagement initiatives, which includes providing trauma informed training focused on resilience capacity building for individuals, teams, and businesses/organizations.
Mark G. Mulroe
Executive Vice President at A Safe Haven LLC – Academic, Co-Chair
Mark Mulroe is Vice President of A Safe Haven LLC. Mark holds positions on several industry and professional associations and committees and is an active member of several committees that address the needs of the homeless, including veterans and correctional populations.
Maija Renko, PhD
Professor at DePaul University, CEC Chair of Entrepreurship
Maija Renko is a Professor and Coleman Chair of Entrepreneurship at DePaul University, Driehaus College of Business, in Chicago. She holds a D. Sc. in Business Administration degree from Turku School of Economics (Finland), and a Ph.D. in Business Administration from Florida International University (USA). Between 2007 and 2019 she worked at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), first as an assistant professor of entrepreneurship, then as a tenured associate professor (2013-2019), and finally promoted to full professor in 2019.
Maija teaches entrepreneurship and social entrepreneurship classes in the undergraduate business and graduate programs of DePaul University’s Driehaus College of Business. Her research and teaching interests are focused on the early stages of the entrepreneurial process (entrepreneurial motivation, opportunities and nascent entrepreneurship), social entrepreneurship, and technology entrepreneurship. Her research has been published in leading management and entrepreneurship journals, and she serves on the editorial and review boards for six of the top journals in entrepreneurship and management.
Vice President at the Safer Foundation
Mark Yates is a Continuing Education Lecturer for the City Colleges of Chicago Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program. He is also a National Facilitator for the Babson College location in Wellesley Massachusetts. He has taught over 1,200 Entrepreneurs and Small Businesspersons in the area of Accounting. He is currently serving as Adjunct Faculty in the Harold Washington Business Department.
Mark Yates is also a Vice President at the Safer Foundation located in Chicago. Mr. Yates is also the General Manager of Reconstruction Technology Partners (RTP), a social enterprise created to further the mission of the Safer Foundation.
Mr. Yates received his MBA from DePaul University, and his BSBA from Roosevelt University. His prior employment includes: Brinks Hofer Gilson and Lione (Intellectual Property Law Firm/Accounting Manager), Robert Morris College (Accounting Instructor), Baker and McKenzie (Law Firm/Manager of Accounting), Blatt, Hammesfahr and Eaton (Reinsurance Law Firm/Assistant Controller), Lovell White Durrant (Reinsurance Law Firm/Manager of Accounting), Bellows and Bellows (Law Firm/Controller), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI/White Collar Crime Squad – Financial Analyst) and University National Bank (Banking/Bank Officer).