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Sylvia I. Garcia is the chief operating officer for The Chicago Community Trust.
In this role, Sylvia is responsible for delivering on the Trust’s mission and vision by leading its internal operations. She brings two decades of experience working at the local, state, and national levels to increase access to economic opportunity in a diverse range of industries, including housing, transportation, and economic development. Most recently, Sylvia served as the Director of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity(DCEO), where she led the state’s economic development arm investing in people, communities, and businesses to expand inclusive economic growth across Illinois.
Prior to DCEO, Sylvia led WSP USA’s national planning strategy and grants consulting team working with clients to identify and secure resources for important projects across the country. She also served as Chief Operating Officer and Chief of Staff at the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), managing the day-to-day operations of the transit agency. Before joining CTA, Sylvia spent nearly a decade working in Washington, DC. During her tenure, she was nominated by President Obama and confirmed by the U.S. Senate to serve as Chief Financial Officer at the U.S. Department of Transportation.
Sylvia has a bachelor’s in social science with a minor in Spanish from the University of Michigan and a master’s in public service management and public policy from DePaul University.