Andrea Sáenz is the President & CEO of The Chicago Community Trust, a community foundation whose strategic focus is on closing the racial and ethnic wealth gap in the Chicago region.
Andrea Sáenz (pronounced Ahn-dray-a Sigh-enz) is the president and CEO of The Chicago Community Trust. The Trust, one of the nation’s largest and oldest community foundations, is committed to a vision of equity, opportunity, and prosperity for the entire Chicago region. The Trust’s work is both professionally fulfilling and deeply personal for Sáenz. As an immigrant from Ecuador who came to Chicago as an adult, she is energized by the strength, creativity, connection, and cultural vibrancy that exists across the region. However, she has also experienced the obstacles too many Chicagoans still face as they strive to build financial stability and prosperity.
Before being named president and CEO in 2022, Sáenz served as the Trust’s chief operating officer, overseeing information technology, learning and impact, and talent. In this role, she applied professional and personal insights to improve systems that affect people still left out of decision-making.
As First Deputy Commissioner for Chicago Public Library, a system of more than 80 neighborhood branches, Sáenz led efforts to reimagine the role libraries can play in improving community wellbeing. Her team pioneered a human-centered approach to designing library services that prioritize the lives and goals of community residents.
Before joining the Library, Sáenz was chief of staff to the Chicago Public Schools CEO, policy advisor for the U.S. Department of Education Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education, and executive director of HACE, a national nonprofit working to increase Latinx entry and success in professional careers. She began her social sector career leading community-based adult education and workforce development services at Congreso de Latinos Unidos in Philadelphia. In each of these roles, she seized every opportunity to reimagine civic institutions to engage and serve people impacted by poverty.
In 2019, Crain’s Chicago Business recognized Sáenz as one of Chicago’s 25 Most Powerful Latinos. Her extensive board service includes the Economic Club of Chicago, National Louis University, American Civil Liberties Union, Albert Pick Jr. Fund, Chicago Learning Exchange, Chicago Public Education Fund, Chicago Public Library Foundation, and Chicago United. She is a member of Leadership Greater Chicago and received an honorary doctorate from Dominican University. She holds a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Pennsylvania and a bachelor’s degree in Latin American Studies from Scripps College.