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Episode 038 – Lynn Osmond, President and CEO, Choose Chicago

On this episode of the Executives’ Exchange, we welcome Lynn Osmond, President and CEO of Choose Chicago. She is joined by guest host, Teresa Wilton Harmon, Chicago Office Managing Partner at Sidley Austin LLP. Osmond tells us her tale of going from music to architecture to champion of all things Chicago. She details her mentorship experience, her 25 years with Chicago Architecture Center, and why she’s passionate about Chicago’s future. 

00:00 – Introduction
02:00 – Lynn details her journey growing up in Canada, moving to the US, and finding a passion for architecture
04:28 – Lynn discusses taking over the Chicago Architecture Foundation and building its programming, eventually founding the Chicago Architecture Center
07:25 – Developing Open House Chicago and the Chicago city model
09:24 – Expanding CAF, her priorities, and growth mindset
11:10 – Lynn discusses engaging young people, developing architecture curriculum in CPS, and programming specifically for girls
14:30 – Lynn discusses role as President Emeritus, future of CAF; equitable programming
16:08 – Shure sponsor message
17:20 – Transitioning to Choose Chicago; rebuilding staff, audiences, and funding post-pandemic
24:45 – Lynn discusses being first woman in her role; mentorship, supporting other women in the industry; work-life balance
29:45 – Tourism disruption; opportunities for people in hospitality, including training and advancement
31:34 – Lynn discusses which awards mean most to her; CAC Lynn Osmond award, which will live on; recognized with honorary AIA
32:50 – Rapid fire questions
36:21 – Outro

Episode Link: Choose Chicago | Chicago Architecture Center | Sidley Austin LLP

Guest Host: Teresa Wilton Harmon, Chicago Office Managing Partner, Sidley Austin LLP
Producer: Eva Penar, Chief Content & Communications Officer, The Executives’ Club of Chicago

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