For Immediate Release
CHICAGO, IL—The Chicago Center Board of Directors have selected three new leaders to join its board: Lynette De Johnette, Asset Management at the Chicago Housing Authority; Catherine Sanders, Ph.D., chief of staff at the University of Chicago Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice; and Jeff Meece, Ed.D., vice president of strategy at Mongoose Research. The new members add a diverse set of experiences and urban expertise to the Chicago Center’s board.
“The Chicago Center has a proud history of academics, community leaders, alumni, and philanthropists joining our board to help guide the institution as a leading provider of place-based experiential education,” said board chair Kevin Hough, FA’99. “Lynette’s storied history with CHA will allow us to dig deeper into understanding the ways the Chicago Center can support the development of future leaders tackling systemic issues. Cat and Jeff’s deep and relevant experiences in higher education and tech complement the board and will uniquely propel our new vision and enrollment growth.”
“As we carry forward Reigniting Our Strategic Directions, we will greatly benefit from their analytical, strategic, and management expertise to support this next chapter for the Chicago Center,” said Executive Director Tyler L. Hough, MS.
Lynette De Johnette is an always-learning real estate and affordable housing professional with over 20 years in the industry. She currently serves the residents of the Chicago Housing Authority, wearing various hats in the Agency’s Asset Management division. Lynette also considers herself a displaced museum professional, having worked in visitor studies and program evaluation in zoos and museums around the country before shifting to real estate. Museum-style institutions are where she developed an interest in informal learning, which ultimately brought her to the Chicago Center for Urban Life as a Board member. She holds degrees and certifications in traditional economics, behavioral economics, project management, and conscious leadership.
Jeff Meece, Ed.D., is an accomplished sales and enrollment management leader with over 25 years of tech and higher education experience. During the course of his career, he has overseen college/university departments including the offices of admissions (undergraduate, graduate, transfer and international), registrar, financial aid, orientation and first-year experience. As a sales executive and consultant, Dr. Meece works with colleges and universities to provide communication solutions and strategies to better engage with students, families, alumni and donors. Dr. Meece has served on a number of boards such as the United Way and Rotary.
Catherine Sanders, Ph.D., is chief of staff in the University of Chicago Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice. Sanders leads projects and initiatives including planning and implementing long-range and strategic plans; working with faculty and staff in managing key priorities and operations; facilitating institutional and global collaborations; and developing systems and efficiencies to support overall School effectiveness. She previously served as chief of staff to the chancellor at the University of Illinois Chicago from 2013-2021, facilitating processes to allow the chancellor and Executive Cabinet to work collaboratively to resolve obstacles and focus on institutional priorities during a period of unprecedented growth and development. Sanders previously worked in student affairs and residence life roles at Northwestern University and the University of Texas at Austin. She holds Bachelor of Social Work and Master of Public Administration degrees from the University of Illinois Chicago and received her Ph.D. in higher education administration from the University of Texas at Austin.