October has been filled with so many incredible moments and people to celebrate that I’ve doubled down on my Inspiration of the Month and added Ciere Boatright to the list! 

Ciere is the perfect example of how when you invest in your community, the rewards return to you tenfold. She is currently the Vice President of Real Estate and Community Development at CRG but takes on the role of the City of Chicago’s commissioner of the Department of Planning and Development next month! Mayor Brandon Johnson announced Ciere’s appointment yesterday, and I could not support his decision more. 

Ciere is a native Chicagoan and has been a driving force toward facilitating inclusive and equitable spaces in Chicagoland communities and beyond. This new position will enable her to oversee even more high-impact developments. As a nationally recognized real estate professional with 10+ years of experience developing industrial, retail, affordable housing, and mixed-use projects, she is more than qualified for the job. 

Throughout her career, Ciere has done an excellent job of bringing stakeholders together to jumpstart city investments, which will be helpful when implementing Mayor Johnson’s economic development agenda across Chicago’s 77 neighborhoods. As Vice President of Real Estate and Community Development at CRG, she led the planning and development of various projects, including CRG’s philanthropic arm, CRG Cares, and community-identified initiatives. Ciere was also responsible for the launch of PILLAR, CRG’s diverse developer initiative, to provide support, mentoring, and technical assistance to emerging commercial developers of color.  

Before joining CRG, she was Vice President of Real Estate and Inclusion at Chicago Neighborhood Initiatives, Inc., where she led the planning and development of the company’s most significant real estate projects. She drove multi-million-dollar projects throughout the city and created over 1,600 jobs, serving as CNI’s affordable housing policy point person. She also participated in working groups and increased the supply of for-sale affordable housing across Chicago. 

 As part of her commitment to collaborative leadership, Ciere and a planning committee recently hosted the inaugural Diverse Developers Conference, bringing together Midwest executives to discuss and examine how to strengthen communities through innovation, opportunities, and partnerships. Ciere is a team player and skilled leader who cares about the communities where she works – and it shows.  

If something is to be done to bring more diverse people together, Ciere is who to call to do it. She will undoubtedly be successful in her continued contribution to building stronger neighborhoods for all. Congratulations, Ciere, and good luck on the next step of your journey. Keep fostering inclusive growth through equitable practices to foster pivotal opportunities for future generations of Chicagoans.

I look forward to what you accomplish next!

Read more here.