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City Year Chicago announces new executive director

City Year Chicago, an education nonprofit devoted to developing young leaders and reducing the high school drop-out rate, is pleased to announce that Myetie Hamilton has been selected as the organization’s new Executive Director.

“We are thrilled to welcome Myetie Hamilton as the Executive Director of City Year Chicago,” said John Gilligan of BDT Capital, outgoing Board Chair. “Myetie brings an extensive background in educational innovation and analysis to the role, as well as the ability to plan strategically to meet the everchanging needs of our communities.”

Hamilton will begin her new role with City Year Chicago on November 4th, succeeding Rebeca Nieves Huffman, who served as Executive Director from 2016 until the conclusion of the organization’s 25th anniversary year, in mid-2019.

“I believe deeply in supporting, mentoring and providing exposure to the youth of Chicago, allowing them the opportunity to pursue their dreams and change the world,” said Hamilton.?” I am honored to join City Year Chicago and look forward to building on its incredible momentum, and working alongside our dedicated staff, board, CPS partners and an expanding network of corporate investors and friends to further elevate our impact on Chicago’s youth and communities.”

Myetie Hamilton

Hamilton brings over 20 years of experience leading innovative change in K-12 education. She served most recently as Executive Director of EPIC Academy, a public charter high school on the far southeast side of Chicago where she led organizational strategy and vision, fundraising and external relations, and board engagement. Prior to taking on the role with EPIC, Hamilton served as Deputy Chief of Schools for Network 9 with Chicago Public Schools (CPS), managing transformation efforts for 28 schools in Chicago’s Woodlawn, Bronzeville, and Hyde Park communities. She also held positions in CPS as Deputy Chief of Staff in the CEO’s Office and Chief of School Support Services for the District.

Hamilton received an undergraduate degree in business management from Alabama A&M University, a master’s degree in public administration from the Illinois Institute of Technology, and is a Leadership Greater Chicago Fellow (Class of 2016).

The beginning of Hamilton’s tenure at City Year Chicago coincides with the organization’s biennial board leadership succession plan. The organization also named Jeff Cohodes as Board Chair, and Kristen Saranteas as Board Vice Chair, who will begin serving in their new roles at the conclusion of John Gilligan’s and Cohodes’ term as Board Chair and Board Vice Chair, respectively.

Jeff Cohodes

Cohodes has been a dedicated member of the City Year Chicago Board since 2012, most recently Board Vice Chair. Cohodes served most recently as President of Northern Trust’s Corporate and Institutional Services Americas until his retirement in 2018. Over Cohodes’ 25-year career with Northern Trust, he led a number of business units as Chief Risk Officer, Executive Vice President in Wealth Management, Chief Operating Officer in Asset Management, Head of Global Corporate Strategy, and Head of Middle Market Commercial Lending. Cohodes is currently a senior lecturer at Loyola University Chicago School of Law.

Cohodes received his undergraduate degree in economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, an M.B.A. degree in finance and accounting from the Graduate School of Business (now Booth) at the University of Chicago, and also holds an inactive Certified Public Accountant license. Cohodes is the President of Temple Chai congregation, a former member of the Board of Directors for the Golden Apple Foundation for 20 years and was a member of the Economic Club of Chicago for 12 years.

Kristen Saranteas

Saranteas serves as Head of Treasury Management at First Midwest. Prior to joining First Midwest Bank, she served as Senior Vice President at Wintrust leading the Treasury Sales, Solutions and Support team. Saranteas has over 25 years in sales and management experience in this space, spanning from domestic small business coverage through global, large corporate transaction services.

Saranteas received her undergraduate degree from Miami University and attended Harvard Business School Executive Education Program while working with the Royal Bank of Scotland. Saranteas is actively involved in the local community and has served on the Executive Board of City Year Chicago for over 13 years. She currently serves as Chair of the Finance and Development Committee for City Year and serves as the Treasurer for Foundations of Music. She is also actively involved with Chicago Cares, Working in the Schools (WITS), and is a Leadership Greater Chicago Fellow (Class of 2020).

About City Year Chicago

Founded in 1994, City Year Chicago helps students and schools succeed. Fueled by national service, City Year Chicago partners with 31 Chicago Public Schools. A diverse team of 254 City Year AmeriCorps members provide research-based student, classroom and school-wide supports to help nearly 16,000 students stay in school and on track to graduate from high school, ready for college and career success. A proud member of the AmeriCorps national service network, City Year is supported by the Corporation for National and Community Service, local school districts, and private philanthropy from corporations, foundations, and individuals.


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