Part of the CAC's “What's Next” series • COVID-19 has created significant challenges to urban transit systems and efforts to reshape mobility in cities worldwide. Hear what strategies are on the table in Chicago for the future of transportation.
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How can Chicago correct steep declines in transit use, continue to improve access and encourage active transportation alternatives? This panel of experts will explore opportunities for shoring up Chicago’s world-class transportation network in a time of crisis. We will also investigate the critical role of transit infrastructure in anchoring new investment in our neighborhoods.
Audrey Wennink, Director of Transportation at the Metropolitan Planning Council, leads this important conversation with CDOT Deputy Commissioner for Strategic Planning Jamie Simone, Elevated Chicago Program Director Roberto Requejo and Center for Neighborhood Technology VP of Government Affairs Jacky Grimshaw.
PROGRAM SPEAKER: Audrey Wennink
Audrey Wennink directs the Metropolitan Planning Council’s transportation efforts and coordinates transportation initiatives with other facets of planning including affordable housing, land use, equity and the environment. She leads transportation research and advocacy efforts including pursuing sustainable funding for transportation in Illinois, integration of performance-based planning methods into transportation practice, and developing efforts to boost transportation equity. Prior to MPC, Wennink was a transportation planning and policy consultant for 12 years. A longtime Chicago resident, Wennink is an advisory board member of the Greater Chicago chapter of WTS, a professional organization to advance women in the transportation industry. She also serves on the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning’s transportation committee. Wennink holds a B.A. in English and Spanish from Colby College and a Master’s in Urban Planning and Policy from the University of Illinois at Chicago.
PROGRAM SPEAKER: Jacky Grimshaw
Jacky Grimshaw joined the Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) in 1992, and has since developed its capacity to engage in public policy advocacy and transportation planning, transportation research, environmental justice, community economic development and more. Grimshaw advocates for and provides expertise to increase transit in the Chicago region. She created and led CNT’s transportation and air quality programs and led CNT’s Transit Future campaign in the fight for mass transit reform and dedicated funding in the Chicago region. Since 2005, she has led CNT’s policy efforts at all levels of government. Prior to CNT, Grimshaw was a researcher in hematology and gastroenterology and served in numerous other capacities, including political advisor for the late Mayor Harold Washington and Director of the Mayor’s Office of Intergovernmental Affairs. Grimshaw has completed the Master of Arts in Public Policy requirements at Governors State University and holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Marquette University in Milwaukee.
PROGRAM SPEAKER: Roberto Requejo, Program Director, Elevated Chicago
Since April 2017, Roberto Requejo has led Elevated Chicago as its program director by developing the coalition’s foundational work culture, values and governance; coordinating its strategies and workplan for equitable Transit Oriented Development (eTOD); and developing processes to ensure racial equity and inclusion in support of a $150M+ pipeline of capital projects near transit. Previously, Requejo was an officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, leading the development and implementation of the Bank’s diversity and inclusion strategic plan. He was also responsible for shaping and managing the Bank’s first Corporate Social Responsibility strategy. Prior to joining the Chicago Fed, Requejo was a program officer at The Chicago Community Trust and worked for the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) and for Citi Community Capital, in a number of initiatives related to development, property management and resident services in communities built as a result of the Chicago Housing Authority Plan for Transformation. In 2019, Requejo was appointed co-chair of Mayor-Elect Lori Lightfoot’s Transition Committee for Transportation and Infrastructure. Born and raised in Galicia, Spain, Requejo holds bachelors and advanced degrees in Political Science and Public Administration from the Universidade de Santiago de Compostela. He also holds a Master’s degree in Urban Planning and Policy from the University of Illinois at Chicago.
PROGRAM SPEAKER: Jamie Simone
Jamie Simone is Deputy Commissioner for Strategic Initiatives at the Chicago Department of Transportation. In this role, she is leading a strategic plan for the Department as well as coordinating the City’s transportation related COVID response. Simone has worked in the field of urban planning in Chicago for over 15 years, with experience in the public, private, and non-profit sectors. She earned a Master in Urban Planning and Policy from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Iowa.
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