The Chicago Community Trust Fellows - 2012

Robert Castaneda, Emerging Leader
John Bouman
Robert Castaneda is the executive director and co-founder, along with his wife Amy, of Beyond the Ball, a nonprofit that uses the power of sport to change lives, give hope, reclaim space and create a culture of opportunities for youth and families in Chicago. Based in the Little Village neighborhood, Beyond the Ball not only develops youth through sport and play, but also develops the community. The organization was honored with the "Most Courageous Use of Sport" Award at the 2010 Beyond Sport Summit, chosen among over 400 entries from over 120 countries around the world. Castaneda has shared his expertise at international events such as One Young World in Zurich, Switzerland, and Beyond Sport United at Yankee Stadium. In 2010, the Castanedas were honored with The PrivateBank Norman Bobins Leadership Award at the Chicago Neighborhood Development Awards.
Gabriela Fitz, Emerging Leader
John Bouman
Gabriela Fitz, co-founder of IssueLab, works with social sector organizations to translate their information into usable knowledge, to help them share that knowledge in ways that cultivate engagement and to set up the online tools and strategies that make knowledge mobilization possible. After nearly ten years of working as an online strategist and web designer for nonprofit organizations such as Feeding America and StoryCorps, Fitz brought her skills in digital content development, communications strategy, interactive design and social science research to IssueLab, an open access archive for nonprofit research.
Paul W. Hamann, Experienced Leader
John Bouman
Paul W. Hamann is president and CEO of The Night Ministry, a 35-year-old Chicago nonprofit that compassionately provides housing, health care, outreach, spiritual care and social services to adults and youth who struggle with homelessness, poverty and loneliness. The Night Ministry operates a 38-foot Health Outreach Bus that serves six Chicago neighborhoods and has 52 shelter beds available to homeless youth. In San Francisco, Hamann worked in adult and youth homeless shelters, assisted with the administration of the Fulbright Scholarship Program on the West Coast, directed programs at Chinatown Youth Center, assisted with the repatriation of refugees during the civil war in El Salvador and founded Families on Track, a public school/ nonprofit collaborative providing supportive services to low-income families within a public school setting. Hamann joined The Night Ministry in 2002 as director of finance & administration and was appointed its president in 2007.
Benjamin Helphand, Emerging Leader
John Bouman
Ben Helphand is the executive director of NeighborSpace, a nonprofit urban land trust dedicated to preserving and sustaining community managed open spaces in Chicago. NeighborSpace shoulders the responsibility of property ownership for a network of flower, vegetable and prairie gardens across the City, so that community groups can focus on gardening. Since joining NeighborSpace in 2009, Helphand has overseen the expansion of the land trust from 56 to more than 80 gardens, each one reflecting a unique vision of a Chicago community. Helphand is also board president of GreenNet, Chicago’s community greening coalition, board president of the Friends of the Bloomingdale Trail and a board member of the Active Transportation Alliance.
Marco Jacome, Experienced Leader
John Bouman
Marco Jacome is chief executive officer of Healthcare Alternative Systems, Inc. (HAS), the largest Latino behavioral health care provider in the state of Illinois. HAS provides bilingual substance abuse treatment, together with a wide variety of other health and social services, to around 8,000 individuals each year. Jacome joined HAS as program director in 1984. He was promoted to associate executive director in 1987 and has served as chief executive officer since 1992. Throughout his tenure at HAS, Jacome has worked effectively to extend affordable behavioral health care to Hispanics and other underserved populations. As chief executive officer, In October 2010, Jacome was recognized as one of Hispanic Business’s 100 Most Influential Hispanics in the United States; he was also named International Employee Assistance Professionals Association 2010 Member of the Year. Jacome currently serves on the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT) national council, and is a board member of Faces and Voices of Recovery, the Illinois Alcoholism Drug Dependency Association (IADDA) and the Great Lakes Addiction Technology Transfer Center.
Darlene M. Oliver, Emerging Leader
John Bouman
Darlene M. Oliver is the associate director for the Metropolitan Chicago Breast Cancer Task Force. The Task Force's mission is to eliminate disparities in breast cancer outcomes for African American women in metropolitan Chicago through research, advocacy and public education. In November 2011, the Illinois Department of Health and Family Services announced that it will partner with the Task Force on a new, statewide breast cancer initiative that will improve the quality of mammogram screenings for women throughout the state. This quality improvement project is the first of its kind in the nation. Before joining the Task Force, Oliver was a partner in a law firm handling commercial and civil rights litigation. In 2008, she was appointed as a hearing officer with the Chicago Commission on Human Relations, a position she currently holds. Oliver has served as a board member or volunteer for Chicago Cares, Inspiration Café, Chicago Youth Centers, Chicago Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights, the Art Institute of Chicago (Evening Associates Board), Chicago Foundation for Women and Personal PAC.
Barbara Otto, Experienced Leader
John Bouman
Barbara Otto is CEO and former executive director of Health & Disability Advocates, a national policy and advocacy organization centered on providing health care and employment-related services to people with disabilities. She is also a principal in the National Consortium for Health Systems Development, a state-to-state technical assistance center, where she focuses on the intersection of health and employment policy. She previously served as Adjunct Faculty in the Employment & Disability Institute of Cornell University and has been a consultant for Virginia Commonwealth University, among other organizations. Otto is a member of the National Academy of Social Insurance, and is an author of several publications including the No Nonsense Guide Series on Employment & Disability. In 2000, the Coalition of Citizens with Disabilities in Illinois awarded Barbara the Justin Dart Award for Advocacy, and in 2003 she received a national commendation from the Social Security Administration. In 2011 President Obama appointed her to the national Advisory Group on Prevention, Health Promotion and Integrative and Public Health.
Rebeccah Sanders, Emerging Leader
John Bouman
Rebeccah Sanders is the first executive director of the Chicago Cultural Alliance (CCA), a growing consortium of community-based ethnic museums, cultural centers and historical societies partnered with many of Chicago’s larger institutions. The CCA works to promote social change and public understanding of cultural diversity through the first voice perspectives of Chicago's ethnic communities. Under her leadership, the CCA has grown from a fledgling collaborative effort to a vibrant organization. In 2011 the CCA was named a semi-finalist for the national Lodestar Collaboration Prize, which recognizes unique models of collaboration that “impact and increase efficiency of nonprofit organizations." Sanders was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship to Israel following her graduation from Notre Dame. She serves on the education committee at the Loyola University Museum of Art.

Read the press release announcing these new Trust fellows.

Learn more about The Chicago Community Trust Fellowship.