Meet the Board
Gary D. Ahlquist is senior partner of PwC Strategy& (US) Inc. (formerly Booz & Company). Mr. Ahlquist served three terms on the Booz & Company’s Board of Directors prior to its merger with PwC. He has been Managing Partner of the Global Health Group, the Chicago office and was President, Booz Allen Healthcare, Inc. He is a past chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Children’s Home and Aid Society of Illinois. He is a member of the Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago, and the Economic Club of Chicago. He holds a B.S., Tufts University and an M.B.A., the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Mr. Ahlquist served as chairman of the Latin School Board of Trustees from 2002-2006. He and his wife, Susan, have four children --all are Latin graduates (Class of '97, '03, '05, and '08).
Diana Aixalá is a Latin School parent and has been an active member of the school community for the past decade. She has held several Parent Association positions including primary school vice president, grade chair and co-chair of the Latin Book Fair. Ms. Aixalá was also a member of the Capital Campaign Committee for Latin and co-chaired the 2012 Scholarship Dinner event. Currently, she is serving as upper school vice president on Latin's Parents Association. She has served on the board of several institutions including: Mary Meyer School 2001-2005, as president 2003-2005; Chicago Children’s Museum Auxiliary Board 2003-2010, as co-president 2007-2009 and on the High Jump Board since 2007, currently chairing the development committee. Previously, she was a marketing director at Kraft Foods from 1989-2001 and teamwork/leadership consultant from 2001-2005. She holds a B.A. from Boston University and an MBA from The University of Michigan.
Edward H. Benford is a managing director of Benford Capital Partners, LLC, a Chicago-based private equity firm. He has served on the board of several institutions including: St. Chrysostom’s Day School and the MetroSquash Gala. He earned an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago and a B.A. from Vanderbilt University. He and his wife, Tracey Benford, established the Benford Family Scholarship at Latin.
Jonathan Berger is the founder and manager of The Equitable Funds LLC, (a real estate investment and development company) and The Equitable Group, Inc. (a property management company), and is the owner and president of The Berger Company, Inc. (a private investment and asset management company). He is also a director of the Berger Family Foundation. Jonathan earned his B.A. from Hampshire College and is an alumnus of the Latin School of Chicago (Class of 1980). He also serves as an active member of the Disaster Action Team with the American Red Cross, the Berger Park Cultural Center for Advisory Council, and the Development Committee of Latin’s Board of Trustees as well as the school’s Enrollment Management Task Force. He and his wife, Rebecca, are currently serving as co-chairs of the Latin Fund.
Pamela Bless is co-president of the Latin School Parent Association. Since moving to the Chicago area in 2013, she has volunteered for the Latin PA as a grade chair and as upper school vice president. She has been an active community and school volunteer for many years and served as PTA vice president and chair of the annual school fundraiser in Carmel, California. She also serves as a financial review committee head for Impact 100 Chicago. Pam is a graduate of Princeton University and spent her professional career as a reinsurance underwriter in New York. She held management positions at Transatlantic Reinsurance Company and Swiss Re America.
Meredith Bluhm-Wolf is a principal of LAMB Partners, a private investment company. She also is a director of the Bluhm Family Foundation. Prior to joining her family business, she practiced law in various capacities including a tenure with the Corporation Counsel of the City of Chicago and with Mayer, Brown and Platt. In addition, Meredith serves on the board of the Children’s Research Fund (formerly the Medical Research Institute Council), The Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital Foundation, The Woman’s Board of the Art Institute and The Photography Committee of the Art Institute of Chicago. She graduated from University of Vermont with a B.A. in Political Science and graduated from Northwestern School of Law with a J.D. in 1995. Meredith’s volunteerism at Latin includes serving on the Board of Trustees since 2013 (Academic Program, Campaign and Facilities committees), and co-chairing the 2012 Scholarship Dinner.
Jillisa Brittan is a mediator at the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. Before joining the court, she was a partner in the Trial Department at McDermott, Will & Emery. Ms. Brittan received her bachelor's degree in English with honors from Northwestern University, and her master's degree in English literature from Columbia University, where she was a President's Fellow in the English Ph.D. program. In 1991, she received her J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School, where she was a member of the University of Chicago Law Review. Ms. Brittan, a 1981 graduate of Latin School, has served as an alumni trustee of Latin's Board of Trustees (1999-2002), a current trustee of Latin's Board of Trustees (2002-2007), and served as the co-chair of the Alumni Committee of Latin's Capital Campaign. She currently is the Trustee liaison to Latin's Dean of Multicultural Affairs. Ms. Brittan also has served on the boards of High Jump, Planned Parenthood, and Jewish Family and Community Service. Ms. Brittan co-chaired Latin's 2000 Scholarship Dinner.
Judy C. Bross is the former director of agency services for Episcopal Charities and Community Services. Prior to joining Episcopal Charities, Ms. Bross was head of the USA Education Charitable Trust. She served as chairman of the Latin School Board of Trustees from 1998-2002, and she has served as President of the Women's Board of Northwestern Memorial Hospital, the Junior League of Chicago, and the Antiquarian Society of the Art Institute. In 2004, Ms. Bross was selected by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) to receive the Seymour Preston Award, which recognizes a school trustee who has provided exceptional commitment and leadership to his or her institution. In 1997, she received the Mercedes-Mentor Award presented by Chicago Magazine and Mercedes Benz. She has co-chaired capital campaigns for the Latin School ('96), the Chicago History Museum and St. Chrysostom's Church. At Latin School she has served as president of the Parents' Council and of Finders Keepers, the former school thrift shop. She has co-chaired the Auction (’89 and ’03) and the 1991-92 Annual Fund (now known as the Latin Fund).
The Rev. Dr. John M. Buchanan, Pastor Emeritus of the Fourth Presbyterian Church of Chicago, where he was Pastor for 26 years, has held a variety of leadership positions in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and is Editor/Publisher of The Christian Century magazine. He served as Moderator of the 208th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in 1996-1997 and has represented the Presbyterian Church as a member of the Governing Board of the National Council of Churches. He has received numerous doctorates and honors, has held several Board memberships, and has written three books.
Jacolyn Bucksbaum is a graduate of the Rochester Institute of Technology, with a BFA in Photographic Arts and Sciences. Ms. Bucksbaum worked as a location manager and unit production manager in the motion picture industry for 11 years prior to starting her family life in Chicago.
She currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Chicago International Film Festival and the Board of the Moadon Kol Chadash. Ms. Bucksbaum has served as a volunteer and leader for many organizations including the U.S. Ski Team, The Aspen Valley Ski Club, The Ounce of Prevention Fund and The Society for Contemporary Art at the Art Institute of Chicago.
She served on the Latin School Board of Trustees from 2005-2014 and chaired the Academics Program Committee from 2013-2014. She has been actively involved in the current Endowment Campaign and served as co-chair of the Fidelitas Society with her husband, John. Jacolyn looks forward to her continued service as a Senior Trustee.
Philip A. Canfield is a principal of GTCR Golder Rauner, LLC, a Chicago-based private equity firm. He earned an MBA from the University of Chicago and a degree in finance with high honors from the Honors Business Program at the University of Texas. Mr. Canfield is a member of the Council on the Graduate School of Business at the University of Chicago.
Sonia Chae is a senior attorney in the corporate reorganization group of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Ms. Chae earned her bachelor’s degree in philosophy with honors from Dartmouth College, and her law degree from Rutgers University, where she was a member of the Rutgers University Law Review.
Taylor Cope ’01 is an International Industrials and Resources Analyst at William Blair & Company in Chicago. Prior to joining the firm in 2007, he worked as a Research Analyst at Giuliani Capital Advisors, also in Chicago. Taylor is a graduate of the University of St. Andrews, Scotland, where he was awarded a Joint M.A. (Honors) in International Relations and Social Anthropology. In 2012, Taylor became a JEOPARDY! champion. Taylor has served on the Alumni Association Board of Directors since 2006. In 2011, he served as alumni speaker for the Admissions Open House. As a member of the Alumni Outreach Committee, he co-chaired the first Life After Latin program in 2013 and served as a panelist, and has participated as a panelist in the first two College Romans networking events. Taylor and his wife hosted an alumni Scholarship Dinner in their home in 2014.
Vince Cozzi is president and chief investment officer at NorthWest International Healthcare Properties REIT. Prior to joining NorthWest, Mr. Cozzi was a senior vice president of Ventas. He graduated with a B.A. in economics from the University of Wisconsin in 1987 and received an MBA from the University of Chicago in 1993. Mr. Cozzi, a 1983 graduate of Latin School, is past chairman of the Latin School Board of Trustees (2012-2016). He has served on Latin's Board of Trustees since 1997 as an alumni trustee, regular trustee and charter trustee, and as president of the Alumni Association from 1997 to 2000. Mr. Cozzi has been actively involved in the High Jump program, both as a volunteer teacher and mentor, and is a founding member of the program's Board of Directors. He and his wife, Maureen Rogan, co-chaired the 2008 Scholarship Dinner.
Paula Crown is a principal of Henry Crown and Company, a private investment firm. Prior to joining Henry Crown and Company, she was employed by Salomon Brothers Inc. as a vice president in the real estate finance department. She earned an A.B. degree from Duke University magna cum laude in 1980 and is currently pursuing a master’s in painting and sculpting from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Ms. Crown is involved in a variety of corporate, charitable and civic activities. She serves on the Board of Trustees of the Museum of Modern Art, Duke University, Conservation International, and is Vice Chair of High Jump. She serves on the National Council of the Aspen Music Festival and School, the Board of Advisors of the Nasher Museum of Art, and the Women’s Board of both the Lyric Opera of Chicago and University of Chicago. She is also a member of the President’s Committee of the Arts and Humanities, the Committee on the Arts of the Aspen Institute, Clean Energy Trust, the Executive Committee of The Chicago Community Trust, the Executive and Campaign Committees of Children’s Memorial Foundation, and Chair of the Committee on Environment for Crown Family Philanthropies.
Angela Dago is president and founder of Divine Financial Consulting Inc., an organization that educates young adults and teenagers financial literacy and to provide general financial advice. Ms. Dago earned her bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Chicago and an M.B.A. in finance and marketing from the University of Illinois Chicago. Ms. Dago has served as a Parent Association Lower School vice president and as ninth grade capital campaign captain.
Ritu Dhingra is the director of operations and chief compliance officer for High Pointe Capital. At High Pointe, Ms. Dhingra oversees compliance and is responsible for business administration and management. Her 20 years of work experience includes managerial positions at Underwriters Laboratories, W.W. Grainger, and Morton International. Ms. Dhingra has a master’s of management degree from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, and a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from The Ohio State University. She is a member of the board of directors of Evans Life Foundation, which reaches out to children at risk in the greater Chicago area. Ms. Dhingra has been actively involved in volunteering for Latin since her family joined the school in 2006. She has been a member of the Academic Program Committee of the Board since 2008 and has served as co-chair of the Auction Advertising Committee, in 2008 and 2009.
Jacky Ferro is a former Chicago Public Schools teacher. She earned a B.S. from Michigan State University in elementary education and a graduate degree from DePaul University in education administration. Ms. Ferro is the vice chair of trustees at the Notebaert Nature Museum, a vice-chair of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Chicago corporate board, and a member of the Lyric Opera Woman's Board. In addition, she serves as a co-chair for the Endowment Campaign for Latin School.
Marshall Front is chairman and managing director of Front Barnett Associates, LLC, an investment counseling firm rendering investment advice to individuals, trusts, tax–free institutions and corporations. Prior to founding Front Barnett Associates, LLC in 1994, Mr. Front was chief executive officer of Stein Roe Investment Counsel and director of Stein Roe & Farnham Incorporated, a Chicago–based investment counseling and mutual fund management firm. He earned his A.B. degree in economics at Columbia University in 1958 and his MBA in finance from the Columbia University Graduate School of Business in 1961. He served as president of the Board of Trustees of Latin School from 1992 to 1998. He also serves on the boards of many corporate, civic and charitable organizations, including the Museum of Contemporary Art, The Field Museum, and Window to the World Communications, Inc. He is a recipient of Columbia University's Alumni Gold Medal for distinguished achievement and its John Jay Award for Professional Accomplishment, and he received an honorary Ph.D. from St. Xavier University (Chicago). Mr. Front is the first recipient of Latin School's Marshall B. Front Award for Extraordinary Trustee Stewardship, and the 1993 recipient of the Edwin S. Van Gorder Award, which is presented to that member of the Latin community who, through volunteer effort and devotion to the school, has rendered extraordinary service to the Latin School of Chicago.
Suzanne Gignilliat is a realtor at Coldwell Banker where she specializes in high-end residential real estate on the north side of Chicago. Prior to her career in real estate, Ms. Gignilliat worked in advertising at DDB Worldwide. She is a graduate of Yale University ’80 and of Northwestern University ’83. She currently is active in a variety of philanthropic organizations. Ms. Gignilliat, along with her husband, Tom Hinkes, chaired the Latin School Annual Fund for two years, and headed the 125th Shine A Light Scholarship Dinner in 2014. She currently chair’s the Development Committee, and serves on the Steering Committee for the Endowment Campaign, the Committee on Trustees, and the Facilities Committee. She is the parent of Paul ’15 and Philip ’17, both “Latin Lifers”.