September 2017


Brian Fabes

Civic Consulting Alliance
Dear Friends,
Our thirty-third year has been a time of both stability and change at Civic Consulting Alliance. What has not changed is our belief that the collaborative work of our talented staff, dedicated clients, and generous pro bono partners is the most promising vehicle to effect meaningful, positive change in the things that matter most to everyone in Chicagoland. We continue to invest in this model, and we believe passionately in its potential to develop high quality education, inclusive economic vitality, dependable public safety, fair application of criminal justice, and  effective civic leadership.
At the same time, the large scale challenges facing our region and the needs of its residents are evolving. Those changes create new opportunities and responsibilities for us. This year we worked hard to listen to the voices of Chicago's many varied communities in our projects. We expanded our "traditional" client base to work with a greater range of leaders driving change, tackling longer-term initiatives that crossed over several of our platform areas. For example, we and our partners:
  • Began and continue to support Rush University Medical Center and partner anchor institutions in establishing the West Side Total Health Collaborative, an effort to improve health and wellness outcomes for more than 450,000 residents of Chicago's West Side;
  • Helped to define and launch Black Chicago Tomorrow (BCT), a model for neighborhood vitality, and with significant community and private sector engagement.
The scourge of gun violence led us to expand our work in public safety and criminal justice. Building on our work with the Police Accountability Task Force and our long-standing collaboration with the Illinois Supreme Court, we and our partners:
  • Stood up and are helping to manage the Partnership for Safe and Peaceful Communities. This coalition of philanthropic organizations, in partnership with community, public and private sectors, funds targeted intervention and supports initiatives that reduce gun violence.
  • Continue to provide project management oversight for the new Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA), with the goal of restoring community trust in the City's capacity to conduct fair and thorough investigations of police misconduct allegations.
  • Have invested significant resources in supporting the Chicago Police Department's "Next Steps for Reform." Our work included change management guidance and development of a comprehensive plan for in-service training enhancements.
  • Developed a transition plan and subsequent strategy for the newly-elected Cook County State's Attorney. Our work helped State's Attorney Foxx turn her campaign platform into an action plan to improve public safety for all Cook County residents while also bringing greater accountability and to the Office.
Our 2017 Scorecard lists some of the accomplishments of our team, partners, and clients over the past year. The positive changes that we see only happen because of this extraordinary, extensive collaboration with our clients, who trust us to help with their most challenging issues; Chicago's private sector leaders, who respond with alacrity to our requests for pro bono support; our funders, who see and invest in the potential of our operating model; and our own staff and Board, who are committed to this work day in and day out. Together, this partnership is a reflection of what makes Chicago special.

A final thing that will never change is the deep gratitude I have for the chance to work with so many people who genuinely want to change the world for the better. In a landscape that can seem chaotic and contentious, our work motivates me and, I hope, you.


Brian Fabes
  • The Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA) officially launched on Friday, September 15. The formation of COPA was a recommendation of the Police Accountability Task Force and will have responsibility for conducting impartial investigations into allegations of police misconduct.
  • The Chicago Police Department has released a public record of progress towards completion of its Next Steps for Reform. Updates can be found on the CPD website here.
Questions? Comments? Contact Robert Owens.

Civic Consulting Alliance is an affiliate of the Civic Committee of the
Commercial Club of Chicago.