, Chief Executive Officer
Juan Rangel is the Chief Executive Officer for the United Neighborhood Organization (UNO), metropolitan Chicago's largest Hispanic community-based organization. Since becoming CEO in 1996, Mr. Rangel has greatly increased the scope and impact of UNO, expanding activities within the city of Chicago, as well as among the quickly-growing suburban Hispanic communities, building on the success that UNO had reached in its first decade of community organizing.
In doing so, Mr. Rangel has sought to refine UNO's mission to better represent its Hispanic constituents, honoring its immigrant roots and values, challenging it to reach its full potential, guiding it to fulfill its aspirations, facilitating and accelerating its assimilation as our nation's newest Americans.
In 2001, Mr. Rangel co-developed the Metropolitan Leadership Institute (MLI), aimed at engaging young Hispanic professionals in the public arena, including political, corporate, governmental and non-profit spheres. The MLI is a year-long training program which incorporates UNO's 20+ years of community organizing experience towards the development of Hispanic leaders within metropolitan Chicago.
Among his accomplishments as CEO, Mr. Rangel opened the Octavio Paz Charter School in 1998, successfully demonstrating that all children can indeed learn given an environment of high expectations and accountability for students, faculty, and staff alike.
Since then, UNO has opened a total of nine campuses including its first high-school and its first campus outside of Illinois in New Orleans, LA.
, Executive Board Chairperson
Veronica Alanis, Chairperson of the United Neighborhood Organization's Executive Board of Directors, currently works for the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) as Director of Strategic Initiatives. She joined the CTA nearly two years ago to oversee the Marketing, Government Affairs, and Real Estate Departments, which are at the core of the agency's ability to minimize the impact that the economic crisis has had on the CTA. Since joining the CTA, she has been overseeing various revenue-generating and branding initiatives, and managed an extensive outreach effort to inform stakeholders about the CTA's budget challenges and ensure riders were prepared for the inevitable reductions in service, while helping them better plan their commutes through the use of technology.
Prior to joining the CTA, Ms. Alanis worked with the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) for ten years, where she last served as the Director of Administration. Initially joining the CHA as an aide to the CEO, she was the first Hispanic woman to form part of the agency's new executive team in 1999 when the city of Chicago assumed control of the notoriously distressed public housing agency. She worked closely with the agency's last four CEO's, and was responsible for facilitating policies and projects that helped move forward the CHA's plan to transform public housing into integrated, mixed-income communities. During her tenure with the CHA, she developed a process to determine the order of building closures and demolition to make way for the redevelopment of new homes, streamlined the leasing process, and devised strategies for effective communication with CHA residents.
Ms. Alanis also worked as a Project Manager and Communications Director for the Hispanic American Construction Industry Association (HACIA), and as a receptionist and Project Coordinator for UNO from 1993 to 1995.
Ms. Alanis previously served as President of the 18th Street Development Corporation (ESDC) Board of Directors where she oversaw the financial recovery of the organization which was near collapse. She has been involved with UNO for more than 16 years and has served on its Board of Directors for almost ten years. In addition to her role as UNO's Chairperson, she also sits on the Board of Advisors for Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago.
|PHILIP J. MULLINS
, Chief Operating Officer, UNO
Philip Mullins has been involved in leadership training and grassroots advocacy efforts for nearly 30 years. Throughout
this time he has served as both a community organizer and chief strategist on civic campaigns and initiatives spanning
an array of policy areas.
Mr. Mullins began his professional career in the early 1980s, working with entities which have become some of Chicagoland's
most prominent Latino organizations, including El Hogar del Niño, Latino Youth Alternative High School, and the Pilsen
Chamber of Commerce. After becoming UNO's Regional Director, Mr. Mullins spent a year with the Gamaliel Foundation, and
also organized in the western suburbs, which led to the creation of the Interfaith Leadership Project. Before returning to UNO,
he provided consulting to the Michigan Empowerment Project.
During UNO's involvement in the Chicago school reform movement in the late 1980s, Mr. Mullins organized thousands
of parents at the grassroots level in support of campaign activities. He also helped to draft and lobby for legislation that
ultimately implemented Local School Councils throughout the city of Chicago.
Mr. Mullins also played a lead role in developing UNO's grassroots naturalization campaign, which brought together
over 2,000 volunteers and 100 churches across the metropolitan Chicago region. Ultimately this effort assisted 65,000
individuals to become U.S. citizens, making it one of the country's most successful grassroots outreach campaigns and a model
for citizenship campaigns across the United States.
Beyond UNO, Mr. Mullins has been engaged by a number of public institutions for organizational and leadership
development. In the 1990s, he performed an analysis of inefficiencies for U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Services, and
co-developed a Chicago community outreach strategy to address its 60,000 applicant backlog. Mr. Mullins also assisted
in training 18 church-based organizations in four states that participated in the Industrial Areas Foundation (IAF) Active
Today, as Chief Operating Officer of UNO, Mr. Mullins directs the organization's long-range planning for program and
policy initiatives. He also developed UNO's grassroots health outreach strategy, which has connected nearly 70,000
Hispanics throughout metropolitan Chicago with free or reduced-cost healthcare. Mr. Mullins co-founded the MLI,
addressing a prominent need for increased leadership across Chicago's public sector.
, , Director of the Center for Urban School Leadership
University of Illinois at Chicago, MLI Program Advisor
Peter Martinez has been involved with the MLI since its creation, measuring program effectiveness and lending
his expertise in community organizing to training retreats and monthly discussions, providing real examples for the
analysis of power plays and organizing tactics. Mr. Martinez has over 40 years of experience in leadership training and
His 25-year organizing career started with the Organization for the Southwest Community (OSC), a Saul Alinsky
Industrial Areas Foundation (IAF) project, where he became the Executive Director within three years, managing projects
across the southwest, and running organizer and leadership trainings nationally. He continued conducting leadership
trainings as the Latino Institute's Associate Director for organizations including UNO, and in places as far as Johannesburg,
Soweto, Cape Town, Durban, and Port Elizabeth for the South African Council of Churches.
In 1987, Mr. Martinez became the first full-time Executive Director of the Hispanic American Construction Industry
Association (HACIA), where he increased the dues-paying membership four-fold, initiated paid affirmative action contracts
as a way of funding the operating budget, and pioneered their annual banquet.
In 1991, Mr. Martinez became a senior program officer at the MacArthur Foundation, in charge of their $40 million Chicago
Education Initiative. A decade later, he left MacArthur to design and lead a dramatically innovative urban principal
preparation program called the Center for Urban School Leadership at the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he is
currently the Director.
In 2009, he was among the 22 individuals chosen from a field of over 800 nominees to serve on the national committee
to develop Accomplished Principal Standards for the United States.
In less than five years that the program has been in existence, it has prepared 40 new transformative principals for
Chicago Public Schools. In fact, one of those leaders is the School Director for the UNO Veterans Memorial High School,
opened in 2008, where Mr. Martinez continues to consult on the school's design and development.