Now accepting nominations: 2023 Leaders for a New Chicago Award

By Field News

All nominations must be submitted by March 1, 2023

The Leaders for a New Chicago Award enters its fifth year in 2023. The award recognizes past accomplishments and promotes and advances a range of leaders whose influence will inform decision making across the city of Chicago. This unique, no-strings-attached $50,000 award ($25,000 for the individual and, if eligible, $25,000 for their affiliated not-for-profit corporation) will be awarded to 10 leaders per year.

The nomination portal is now open. You can learn more about the program, check your organization’s eligibility, and nominate yourself or a peer/colleague here. Awardees will be announced in June 2023.

Welcome, Maudlyne Ihejirika!

By Field News

Photo by Karen Kring

We’re so excited to welcome Maudlyne Ihejirika to our Field Foundation team. Maudlyne, who will manage our Media & Storytelling portfolio, spent 29 years with the Chicago Sun-Times, where she was an award-winning reporter and columnist. She is responsible for supporting the foundation’s work in seeking to change how news production and storytelling reflect Chicago—and in creating a more equitable, connected, and inclusive local media ecosystem in which the stories of all Chicagoans are told accurately, fairly, authoritatively, and contextually.

Learn more about Maudlyne below. She brings deep knowledge and experience to her new role, and we look forward to our work together!

Meet Maudlyne

Prior to joining Field, in her career at Chicago Sun-Times, Maudlyne served as assistant city editor, and covered beats from crime and the inner city to housing and education, politics, and philanthropy. From 2016 until 2022, when she left the newspaper to cover racial equity issues for myriad newspapers, Maudlyne wrote “Chicago Chronicles”—long-form columns of diverse and untold narratives focusing on racial, social, and economic justice issues impacting Black and Brown communities.  

As weekend city editor in 1977, she left to work for Gov. Jim Edgar as press secretary for the Illinois Department of Children & Family Services. In 1999, she left state government to launch the Ihejirika Media & Communications Group, managing media operations for members of the U.S. Congress, Illinois Legislature, and City Council. It was during that time she managed media strategy for the successful re-election bid of U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush in the heated race against a then-fledgling Illinois politician, Barack Obama.

Returning to the Sun-Times in 2003, her numerous awards include the prestigious Studs Terkel Award, and top national and local honors from the Society of Professional Journalists, National Association of Black Journalists, Associated Press, and Illinois Press Association. Her myriad civic awards range from the Chicago Defender “Woman of Excellence” and African Festival of the Arts’ “Community Servant” awards; to the Chicago Coalition of African American Leaders’ “Vernon C. Jarrett Par Excellence in Journalism Award,” and the Big 10 BANboree’s 2022 Black Alumni of the Year. She was ranked on the 2019 annual list of “The 25 Most Powerful Women In Chicago Journalism.”

Maudlyne holds an M.S.J. from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, and a B.A. in Journalism from the University of Iowa. She is also a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. A highly sought-after speaker, including several university commencement speeches, she holds an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Saint Xavier University. In 2020, Ihejirika was inducted into the Hall of Achievement at her alma mater, Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. In 2018, she was similarly inducted into the Halls of Fame at her undergraduate alma mater, the University of Iowa School of Journalism and Mass Communication, and the Hall of Fame at Downers Grove South High School. She is a longtime member of the Professional Advisory Board of the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Iowa, and of the prestigious Council of 100 at Northwestern University.

Maudlyne is Immediate Past President of both the Chicago Journalists Association and the National Association of Black Journalists Chicago Chapter. She is also the author of “Escape From Nigeria: A Memoir of Faith, Love and War” (Africa World Press, 2016)—a riveting tale of her family’s survival of the brutal Nigerian-Biafran War and miracles that brought them to the US as refugees.

For many years a frequent guest contributor on PBS-TV’s “Chicago Tonight: Week In Review” and FOX-32’s “Good Day Chicago,” Maudlyne has appeared as a political analyst on outlets from CNN to MSNBC, TV One, ABC and CBS networks, as well as on NPR, WBEZ, WVON and V103 radio.

More on her Sun-Times work here

More on Ihejirika here

Follow her on Facebook/Instagram/Twitter: @Maudlynei



We’re hiring: Media & Storytelling Program Manager

By Field News



The Field Foundation is a private, independent foundation that aims its grantmaking toward the goal of community empowerment through Art, Justice, Media & Storytelling, and Leadership Investment.

The Foundation’s Media & Storytelling program intends to create an equitable, connected, and inclusive local media ecosystem in which the stories of all Chicagoans are told accurately, fairly, authoritatively, and contextually. To achieve its goal, the Field Foundation funds capacity building and content creation for BIPOC media makers, journalists, and storytellers to magnify narratives.

To learn more about the Field Foundation’s work in Media & Storytelling, please visit our website:


The Field Foundation is guided by the core values of equity, respect, transparency, trust, and kindness.


The Field Foundation’s Media & Storytelling Program Manager role leads and manages the continuation of a three-year, grant-funded initiative focused on a portfolio of Chicago-area grantees who work at the intersection of racial equity and community-centered journalism. The Program Manager leads and coordinates the Media & Storytelling work, including developing strategies to strengthen the impact of the Foundation’s work, particularly for BIPOC media makers, journalists, and storytellers.


  • Grant Making (50%)
    • Review and solicit grant proposals and reports
    • Conduct site visits and information meetings
    • Write briefs and funding recommendations
    • Recommend and present grants to the Foundation’s board
    • Develop and update grantmaking strategies
    • Leverage impact and gain knowledge
  • External Sector Engagement (25%)
    • Engage with nonprofit partners
    • Represent the Field Foundation externally
    • Convene stakeholders
    • Develop content about grantees
  • Grant Reporting and Compliance (25%)
    • Lead reporting, communication and compliance with partner foundations


  • Knowledge of Chicago, its history, and opportunities
  • Five-to-ten years of work experience
  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Knowledge of mission-driven, impact-focused, nonprofit-sector work
  • Understanding of nonprofit and community journalism, both locally and nationally
  • Ability to:
    • Take ownership and lead projects from start to finish
    • Think critically and work collaboratively with internal and external stakeholders
    • Set and achieve strategic objectives
    • Manage multiple tasks and priorites simultaneneously
    • Communicate and present ideas with clarity and humility
    • Operate in ambiguous and changing environments
    • Maintain and build trusted relationships
  • Experience with grants and/or data management software is a plus.


Operating at the intersection of art and justice in Chicago, the Field Foundation is a unique place. Our small team is both creative and collegial and values collaboration, discussion, and debate. We are proud to be located at Impact House, a social innovation space in the Loop, where we work alongside other foundations and social impact organizations. In this environment, we connect and support one another, which serves not only the Foundation’s work but the work of our grantee partners as well as our Impact House neighbors.

We are an equal opportunity employer. Our diverse team and board bring unique experiences, ideas and perspectives to our work and reflect the diversity of Chicago. We are interested in candidates who will thrive in this culture and share our commitment to community empowerment. All are welcome.


$90,000: Benefits include top-tier health insurance, dental and vision coverage, life insurance, paid vacation, personal and wellness days, matching gift program, a transit plan, partial cell phone reimbursement, a hybrid and flexible work schedule along with holidays, and a generous 403b retirement plan after one year.

Field Foundation is also open to exploring long-term contractual engagements with independent contractors as well as those seeking full-time employment for this unique, three-year, grant-funded program.


Please submit your resume or CV to, along with a cover letter highlighting relevant experience and why you would like to work with the Field Foundation. Please use M&S Program Manager role + Your Name in the subject line.

Download a copy of this job description here.

Celebrating our Fall 2022 Grantees

By Field News

Field Foundation News

Celebrating our Fall 2022 Field Grantees

We are so pleased to announce our Fall 2022 Grantees. In this grant cycle, we awarded slightly more than $1 million to 33 organizations—including new and returning grantee partners. As always, the majority of our dollars are directed to the South and West Sides of Chicago, and to ALAANA (African, Latinx, Asian, Arab, and Native American) organizations that are at the center of policy debates, activism, and front-line service to Chicagoans. Congratulations to all our grantees, whose impact in the areas of Art, Justice, and Media & Storytelling continues to transform communities across Chicago.


Albany Park Theatre Project creates transformative experiences that forge an inclusive community of youth artists, adult artists, and audiences to envision and build a more just, equitable, and joyful world.
Ballet Folklorico de Chicago is a nonprofit organization that provides cultural and artistic dance instruction in Chicago.
Elastic Arts Foundation supports a community of local, independent, and creative musicians and artists in the Avondale/Logan Square neighborhood and throughout the city of Chicago.
Floating Museum is an art collective that creates new models, exploring relationships between art, community, architecture, and public institutions.
Free Street Theatre creates performances by, for, about, with, and in Chicago’s diverse communities; challenges ideas of where theater belongs and who belongs in a theater; and uses theater to ask questions, prompt dialogue, and build communities.
in c/o: Black women invites makers of color, invested in community-centered visual arts production, to build and activate archives, art objects and physical spaces as sites of care.
International Latino Cultural Center of Chicago is a Pan-Latino, 501(c)(3) nonprofit multidisciplinary arts and cultural organization dedicated to developing, promoting, and increasing awareness of Latino cultures among Latinos and other communities.
Kehrein Center for the Arts Foundation is a home for storytelling through music, theatre, dance, spoken word, and creative expression that animates and engages the human spirit.
Kuumba Lynx is committed to the lives of youth using urban art and performance to cultivate strong communities built on a foundation of love.
Puerto Rican Arts Alliance is a community-based organization that is dedicated to preserving Puerto Rican culture by maintaining traditions, showcasing Puerto Rican arts and music, providing arts and music education, and cultivating pride in heritage.
Segundo Ruiz Belvis Cultural Center  realizes its mission to preserve and promote appreciation of the culture and arts of Puerto Rico and Latin America, with a focus on its African heritage.
South Chicago Dance Theatre is a multicultural organization seamlessly fusing classical and contemporary dance styles as well as preserving historic dance work.
South Side Community Art Center is the oldest and longest running independent art center in the nation, whose mission is "to conserve, preserve, and promote the legacy and future of African American art and artists while educating the community on the value of art and culture."
Stomping Grounds Literary Arts Initiative engages criminalized and justice-involved youth in professionally focused literary, visual, and recording arts programs that provide creative resources & opportunities for students to explore their creativity and support their life-affirming futures.
Threewalls fosters contemporary art practices that respond to lived experiences, encouraging connections beyond art.


#LetUsBreatheCollective is an alliance of artists and activists organizing through a creative lens to imagine a world without prisons and police.
Chicago Torture Justice Center seeks to address the traumas of police violence and institutionalized racism through access to healing and wellness services, trauma-informed resources, and community connection.
Chicago United for Equity honors the civic power of everyday people, and connects and amplifies civic love to transform Chicago into a city that is responsive and accountable to communities of color.
Children’s Best Interest Project aims to prevent incarceration and childhood trauma by organizing to win full implementation of sentence mitigation under the Children’s Best Interest Act (PA 101-0471).
Healing to Action has a mission to end gender-based violence by building the leadership and collective power of the communities most impacted: survivors from immigrant, BIPOC, low-income, disability, and LGBTQ communities.
IL Muslim Civic Coalition is a partnership of hundreds of activists, influencers and organizations, which convenes, collaborates, and amplifies social and civic efforts with diverse and underrepresented races, faiths, and communities towards civic justice for all.
Latino Union of Chicago collaborates with low-income immigrant and US-born workers to develop the tools necessary to collectively improve social and economic conditions.
Not Me We organizes Black, poor, and working class community members in order to build grassroots infrastructure that allows for collective and individual repatriation of resources & power in South Shore and adjacent neighborhoods.
Organizing Neighborhoods for Equality: Northside is a mixed-income, multi-ethnic, intergenerational organization that unites our diverse communities, building collective power to eliminate injustice through bold and innovative community organizing.
Safe Work Coalition seeks to make sex work safer—particularly for Black, Brown, & Trans sex workers—by reducing the criminalization of sex work in Illinois.


American Indian Association of Illinois is an urban-based nonprofit dedicated to transforming American Indian development into an experience founded in Native culture, language, and history, fused with traditional Native knowledge and tribal values, and designed as a model to enhance all urban/off reservation Native communities.
Borderless Magazine is a nonprofit news outlet that is reimagining immigration journalism for a more just and equitable future.
Cicero Independiente provides bilingual, accurate reporting, connects residents to important resources and information, and equips our neighbors with journalism skills to engage in local democracy.
Girls Like Me Project helps African-American girls, ages 11-17, to critically examine social, cultural, and political ideologies in media so that they will be able to overcome stigmas and negative stereotypes.
Invisible Institute is a journalism production company on the South Side of Chicago, working to enhance the capacity of citizens to hold public institutions accountable.
Public Media Institute is a nonprofit 501(c)3, community-based art & culture organization with a mission to create, incubate and sustain innovative and equitable cultural programming through the production of socially engaged projects, festivals, spaces, exhibitions, and media.
Rebellious Magazine for Women produces feminist, solutions-focused, social impact journalism and coverage of underrepresented artists.
True Star Foundation provides training and real-world work experience for urban youth that teaches them how to develop, create, and market digital content on a platform that empowers them to forge their own paths.

A personal introduction and a new chapter for Field Foundation

By Field News

A New Chapter for Field Foundation
A message from Field President Daniel O. Ash


Today, I began my new role as the Field Foundation’s eighth president. I am incredibly honored to be working with our Board and the Field staff in service of Field’s mission—centering racial equity to achieve community empowerment through Art, Justice, Media & Storytelling, and Leadership Investment. And I am delighted to have this opportunity to work with so many of you as part of our shared commitment to investing in people and communities across the city of Chicago—particularly those who are advocating tirelessly for essential change.

I have many emotions as I reflect on this day, which coincides with the observance of the Juneteenth holiday to commemorate the end of slavery in our country. I’m thinking about the progress and setbacks, the wins and losses, and the distance we still stand from living in a truly equitable society. Although I’m keenly aware of the challenges of the present moment, I am hopeful. Because I see transformational change in the tremendous work that our grantees and other partners are doing on the ground each day.

For those of you I’ve not yet had the pleasure to meet, let me briefly introduce myself. I come to Field from The Chicago Community Trust, where I served as associate vice president of community impact and previously as the Trust’s chief marketing officer. Prior to joining the Trust, I spent ten years as vice president at Chicago Public Media, where I was responsible for corporate sponsorship and individual giving and oversaw marketing and strategic partnership.

I have dedicated my career to advancing racial justice and equity, and I will bring my experience to help continue the pivotal and strategic work of the Field Foundation in this important area.

In the coming weeks, I will be meeting with our Board, Field staff, and key stakeholders to understand better how we build on our work. As for what’s ahead, you can continue to count on the same level of support and commitment you have come to expect from Field.

Just like the Field Foundation has always been, I am a believer in the promise of Chicago, having spent most of my career here. I look forward to working together and learning from each other in service to Chicago communities.



Announcing Our 2022 Cohort: Leaders for a New Chicago

By Field News

June 7, 2022
analía rodríguez
Field Foundation of Illinois
(773) 259-4826

A’Lexus Murphy
Rise Strategy Group
(817) 703-6419

10 Diverse Leaders Across the City to be Awarded for Exemplary Work Combatting Structural Racism, Discrimination and Disinvestment

CHICAGO – The Field Foundation, in partnership with The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, today announced the 2022 Leaders for a New Chicago cohort. The 10 leaders—whose work aligns with Field’s grantmaking areas of Art, Justice, and Media & Storytelling—exemplify the power of creativity, focus and sheer determination in serving the communities and spaces they occupy across Chicago. Since the program was launched in 2019, the MacArthur Foundation has committed a total of $4.2 million to support the award recipients, who represent areas directly impacted by the city’s history of structural racism, discrimination, and disinvestment.

Now in its fourth year, the Leaders for a New Chicago Awards are part of Field’s ongoing investment in racial justice visionaries and organizations addressing systemic issues in underserved communities. Each leader will receive a no-strings-attached award for $25,000, and their affiliated organizations each will receive an additional $25,000 general operating grant. The awards will recognize past accomplishments while shining a light on the leaders who will influence decision-making across Chicago.

A committee comprised of 2021 awardees, facilitated by Field and MacArthur staff members, oversaw the process of reviewing nominations and recommending award recipients. Their selection of the 2022 leaders includes artists, advocates, educators, organizers, social change agents and storytellers. Coming from different geographic backgrounds and income levels, the leaders represent a diversity of age, ethnicity, gender identity, religion, and sexual orientation.

“The common thread across this group of dynamic individuals is their ability to lead, inspire and empower their communities,” said Field Foundation Leadership Investment Program Officer analía rodríguez, who was a member of the inaugural 2019 cohort. “We look forward to bringing them together with support and resources to help advance their work and make this a city that works for everybody.”

MacArthur Senior Program Officer, Chicago Commitment, Geoffrey Banks said, “We are proud to recognize these visionary leaders for their individual and collective wisdom and expertise. This is an opportunity to elevate the voices of individuals who are leaders in their communities and fields and to provide them with ‘no strings attached’ support, enabling the leaders to choose how to spend the funds to pursue their professional and personal goals as they continue changing the landscape of our city.”

The awardees and their respective fields are:

Kevin Iega Jeff (he/him/his), co-founder of Deeply Rooted Dance Theater (DRDT) and creative/executive director of Deeply Rooted Productions.

Scheherazade Tillet (she/her/hers), co-founder and Executive Director of A Long Walk Home.

avery r. young (he/him/his), award-winning artist, composer, and producer, a teaching artist with Urban Gateways.

Emily Blum (she/her/hers), executive director of Disability Lead.

Antonio Gutierrez (they/them/theirs), strategic coordinator and co-founder of Organized Communities Against Deportations (OCAD).

Dixon Romeo (he/him/his), de facto leader of Not Me We.

Tanya Watkins (she/her/hers), executive director of Southsiders Organized for Unity and Liberation (SOUL).

Dr. Dorene P. Wiese (she/her/hers), chief executive officer of the American Indian Association of Illinois.

Trina Reynolds-Tyler (she/her/they/them), director of data for Invisible Institute.

Irene Romulo (she/her/hers), development and community engagement coordinator and co-founder of Cicero Independiente.

Field Foundation Leadership Investment Program Officer analía rodríguez will be available for interviews after 1:30 PM.


About the Field Foundation
Founded in 1940 by Marshall Field III, the Field Foundation is a private, independent foundation that has been dedicated to the promise of Chicago for more than 80 years. The Field Foundation aims its grantmaking toward the goal of Community Empowerment through Justice, Art, Media & Storytelling and Leadership Investment. With racial equity at the center of its giving, it directs dollars to critical organizations working to address systemic issues in Chicago and aims to directly benefit some of our city’s most divested communities. Learn more at

About the MacArthur Foundation
The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation is placing a few big bets that truly significant progress is possible on some of the world’s most pressing social challenges, including over-incarceration, global climate change, and nuclear risk. In addition to the MacArthur Fellows Program, the Foundation continues its historic commitments to the role of journalism in a responsible and responsive democracy, as well as the strength and vitality of our headquarters city, Chicago. MacArthur has invested nearly $1.5 billion in more than 1,600 organizations and individuals across the Chicago region—more than any other place in the world. The Foundation’s Chicago Commitment is focused on contributing to civic partnerships, investing in vital communities, advancing influential and diverse leaders, and cultivating creative expression and art. Learn more at

Field President

By Field News







The Chicago Community Trust and Chicago Public Media Veteran Will Continue Course of Field
Foundation’s Racial Equity Work in Chicago

CHICAGO—The Field Foundation Board of Directors at the Field Foundation today announced the appointment of Daniel O. Ash to lead the Foundation as President beginning June 20. As Chicago continues to grapple with the health and economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our most vulnerable communities, Ash’s deep connection to the city, and his understanding of its systemic and structural inequities that must be addressed, makes him exceptionally qualified to advance the Field Foundation’s commitment to community empowerment through funding the work of nonprofits’ efforts in justice, art, media & storytelling and leadership investment. Ash was chosen after an extensive nationwide search led by Russell Reynolds.

“One of the most important issues in our world today is racial justice and equity, and I have dedicated my career to advancing this work,” Ash said. “It’s an honor to continue the pivotal and strategic work of the Field Foundation by leading the organization as it continues centering racial equity in all of its important work.”

Ash joins the Field Foundation from The Chicago Community Trust, where he has served as Associate Vice President of Community Impact, building the Building Collective Power strategy aiming to advance equitable neighborhoods within under-invested communities through grant-making to community organizing, storytelling and resident-driven initiatives. Previously, Ash served as Chief Marketing Officer where he directed brand strategy and communications, spearheading the development of On the Table, an ongoing civic engagement and dialogue platform designed to center and amplify resident voices and create greater civic connectedness across the Chicago region. Prior to joining the Chicago Community Trust, Ash worked at Chicago Public Media, where he led double-digit growth and oversaw both marketing and strategic partnerships. He has also held leadership positions at the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law, the Chicago Department of Public Health and the Center for Family Policy and Practice.

“We are so pleased to have Daniel’s leadership as the Foundation continues the crucial work of centering racial justice,” said Field Foundation Chief Operating Officer and Interim CEO Mark Murray. “Daniel’s authentic connection to Field’s work aligns with the Foundation’s mission and will facilitate the success of our work on behalf of communities.”

“Daniel’s breadth of experience and the respect he has earned through his work made him the ideal choice to become the next President of the Field Foundation,” said Field Foundation Board Chair Gloria Castillo, who co-led the search with Board Member Lyle Logan. “Daniel deeply understands the work the Field Foundation is prioritizing because he has been doing similar work for years, and we are confident that his vision aligns with the Foundation’s goals.”

With significant experience in media and storytelling, building strategic partnerships, and convening a vision around important issues through collaborative leadership, Ash will continue advancing the strategies adopted by the Field Foundation in 2018.

“Daniel Ash is uniquely qualified to lead the Field Foundation,” said Marshall Field V, Life Director of the Field Foundation. “Under Daniel’s direction, the Foundation will continue to steadfastly carry out its mission as set by Marshall Field III in 1940.”

Ash is committed to a number of community organizations and currently serves on the boards of the North Lawndale Employment Network, the Center for Family Policy and Practice, and Young Chicago Authors. He holds a B.A. in economics from Oberlin College and a master’s degree from the University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy.


About the Field Foundation
Founded in 1940 by Marshall Field III, the Field Foundation is a private, independent foundation that has been dedicated to the promise of Chicago for over 80 years. The Field Foundation aims its grantmaking toward the goal of Community Empowerment through Justice, Art and Leadership Investment. With racial equity at the center of its giving, it directs dollars to critical organizations working to address systemic issues in Chicago and aims to directly benefit some
of our city’s most divested communities.

For more information, visit

Field News – April 2022

By Field News

Artwork and images from Richard Tran, Field’s Arts Program Officer. Left: Operation Ranch Hand // A History of Agent Orange. What began as an inquiry of the human rights violations during the US occupation in Vietnam resulted in an exploratory and interactive experience of screen-printed wartime archives+balloons+turmeric. Right: Richard (left) and Kofi (right) working collaboratively on a set of handmade pottery while Richard was an artist-in-residence in Nungua, Ghana, studying community craft arts & the ability to form community through object and occupation versus place and space.

Field Foundation News

Welcome to the April issue of Field News. In this issue, you will find:

  • A message from Richard Tran, our new Arts Program Officer. Meet Richard and learn more about his background, as well as what he brings to Field as an artist and Chicagoan.
  • Our list of January/Winter 2022 Grantees representing 24 organizations across Chicago.
  • A reminder that Field Foundation’s Letter of Inquiry portal will open on April 15 for Fall 2022 grant considerations.
  • Links to follow Field Foundation on social media.

Hello from Richard Tran, Field’s Arts Program Officer

Hi folks. Thank you so much for taking the time to read this blurb. I know you all have busy lives, so I’m full of gratitude that we’re able to connect through this shared virtual space. How very meta.

As a locally grown artist and Chicagoan, it’s truly an honor to be the Arts Program Officer at Field—and I’ll tell you why!

I grew up in Uptown, right off the Argyle Redline stop where many Vietnamese migrants first settled as they started to form new diasporic communities. It was there my parents ran a small “ma and pa” shop where they worked, grinded, hustled, and then worked some more. Eventually, this looked like 12-hour days, seven days per week, for just under three decades before their bodies said, “no more.” And it wasn’t always just the two of them. Although I didn’t realize it at the time, my parents’ restaurant became my after-school program. It’s where I learned how to write to take orders from customers, and where my mom grilled me with problem sets so that my mental accounting mathematics were quicker than a cash register.

Over the years, their restaurant became a community center of sorts, and it’s where I learned what it meant to be “in community.” Despite operating a business, my parents used a trust-based credit system for community members to pay off their tabs at the end of each month.

Community members also used the space as a mutual aid and food exchange to give, trade, sell, and barter. It was a place to scratch off lotto tickets and complain about taxes…a safe haven to talk about the underground economy and where to find your next gig. It was a daycare…a space for elders to watch the Vietnamese news…and so much more. And what was happening, all the people and pieces coming together… I can only best describe as the most beautiful artistic social practice I could imagine.

As for what’s ahead for me, I look forward to the opportunity to learn as a young artist working in philanthropy—and to continue Field’s grant-making with community empowerment top of mind. For the Art portfolio, this means supporting artists, arts organizations and collectives doing culturally anchored, community-centered, and justice-driven work.

In my prior “office” work, I’ve supported fundraising initiatives for community-based organizations, and it’s a whirlwind to be at this end of the table. You have my word that I will always strive to hold myself accountable and that I will always welcome your input—because it not only helps me grow and do better, but it will also push the philanthropic sector to continue doing better.

Let me close by sharing my personal commitment and reinforcing Field’s commitment to ALAANA and South- and West-Side organizations. I am honored to be in the position to build on the progress of this journey Field started just a handful of years ago. While I’m not a carbon copy of Field’s previous Arts Program Officer, Tempestt Hazel, I had the privilege of working alongside her for over a year as a Field Fellow. So, while it may be a new chapter for the Art portfolio, it’s the same book.

Thank you, again, for your time and for sharing this space with me. If we haven’t already met, I am undeniably excited to meet you one day soon.

Until then,

Celebrating our January/Winter 2022 Field Grantees


The Firehouse Community Arts Center The mission of the Firehouse Community Arts Center of Chicago is to interrupt the cycle of violence in the lives of youth and young adults through the power of the arts.
Lorde, Rustin & Bates (LRB) LRB’s mission is to address systemic and structural level bias by organizing communities to serve as the changemaker, working to fuse social justice and the arts. LRB centers Black and Brown lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans/gender nonconforming, queer and questioning/same gender loving (LGBTQ/SGL) communities and other historically marginalized groups.
PullmanArts proudly supports Chicago’s far South Side artists and community with exhibitions, classes, and performances in our Block House Gallery and area venues; promoting diversity, inclusion, and access for all to unique and inspiring cultural programming in the historic Pullman area and beyond.
South Shore Drill Team uses performing arts to engage youth from underserved South Side neighborhoods throughout their critical teenage years, mitigating the dangers of gangs, drugs, and violence, while guiding members towards completing their educational and career goals.


BYP100 is a national, member-based organization of Black 18- to 35-year-old activists and organizers, dedicated to creating justice and freedom for all Black people. We do this through building a network focused on transformative leadership development, direct action organizing, advocacy, and political education using a Black queer feminist lens.
Chicago Area Fair Housing Alliance (CAFHA) CAFHA's mission is to combat housing discrimination; reverse historic, intentional patterns of disinvestment in Black and Latinx communities; and promote equitable place-based opportunity through education, advocacy, and collaborative action.
Community Renewal Society informs and brings people of faith and congregations together, in partnership with communities, coalitions, interfaith organizations and civic leaders, to intentionally and decisively transform society toward greater social justice at the intersection of racism and poverty.
Dissenters is leading a new generation of young people to reclaim our resources from the war industry, re-invest in life-giving services, and repair collaborative relationships with the earth and people around the world.
HANA Center HANA Center’s mission is to empower Korean American and multi-ethnic immigrant communities through social services, education, culture, and community organizing to advance human rights.
Kenwood Oakland Community Organization (KOCO) Through the sustained engagement of low-income and working families, KOCO develops multi-generational leaders who impact decision-making processes and public policies, improving the quality of life in our local communities.
Little Village Environmental Justice Organization (LVEJO) The mission of LVEJO is to organize with our community to accomplish environmental justice in Little Village and achieve the self-determination of immigrant, low-income, and working-class families.
Mamas Activating Movements for Abolition & Solidarity (MAMAS) is a collective of people conducting the labor of mothering among Black, indigenous, and people of color-based communities.
Southside Together Organizing for Power (STOP) Our mission is to advance economic and social human rights by organizing and developing leadership among people most affected by economic and racial oppression.
Sex Workers Outreach Project-Chicago (SWOP-Chicago) is a grassroots organization dedicated to improving the lives of current and former sex workers in the Chicago area, on and off of the job. We support the rights and wellbeing of sex workers and their communities, with a focus on ending violence and stigma through education, advocacy, outreach, and peer support.
Working Family Solidarity unites low and moderate-wage workers and their families, primarily African American and Latinx, to fight for equitable development. We focus primarily on the areas of jobs/labor rights and affordable housing/housing rights.


Black Researchers Collective The mission of the Black Researchers Collective is to train and equip communities with research tools to be more civically engaged and policy informed.
Chicago South Side Film Festival The two-fold mission of the Chicago South Side Film Festival (“CSSFF”) is to provide South Side filmmakers with opportunities to screen their work in their own communities, and to use film as a tool for collective intellectual and community engagement.
Guild Literary Complex is a 30-year-old grassroots literary arts organization creating performance-based events in and around the Chicagoland area. We partner and collaborate with other community groups on social and restorative justice issues, providing arts and advocacy programming for marginalized voices.
Honey Pot Performance enlists modes of creative expressivity to examine the nuances of human relationships, including the ways we negotiate identity, belonging, and difference in our lives and cultural memberships.
Invisible Institute We are a journalism production company on the South Side of Chicago. We work to enhance the capacity of citizens to hold public institutions accountable.
Public Narrative delights in their mission to uphold equity within the public narrative of media. The organization actively diversifies the voices participating in the news through training & connecting community members to media outlets to further reinforce the importance of representation.
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Apply for Fall Grant Considerations

On April 15, Field’s Letter of Inquiry portal will open for Fall 2022 grant considerations in the areas of ArtJusticeLeadership Investment and Media & Storytelling. Complete our short, online form by Monday, May 16, to tell us about your work. Apply here: and feel free to share this link with people or organizations who may be interested.

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Justice Update, Grant Season, Holiday Wishes

By Field News

Photo courtesy of JNJ Creative. Artist credit: Englewood Arts Collective co-founder Joe “Cujodah” Nelson


Welcome to the December issue of Field News and happy holidays to all! In this newsletter, you will find:

  • An update from Angelica Chavez, our Justice Program Officer, describing the work of our grantee partners in our Justice portfolio—which seeks to support organizations working to address the root causes of inequity and systemic racism through community organizing, advocacy and policy.
  • A reminder that Field Foundation’s Letter of Inquiry portal is now open for Spring 2022 grant considerations.
  • Season’s greetings and best wishes for 2022.


Focus on Justice


Four years ago, Field created a series of heat maps to help understand how race and need align in our city. The team looked at several quality-of-life indicators, including poverty, crime, and health, as well as access to education, jobs and the arts. What we found not only supported the hypothesis that race would equal need, but that in Chicago, there is an incredible nexus of poverty, trauma and divestment directly aligned to race. The inequity within the study area isn’t by happenstance—it’s by design. And inequities affecting the people and communities within the heat maps have only been exacerbated by the COVID pandemic. Field’s grantee partners in our Justice portfolio—present and past—are working every day to address these realities and make a meaningful impact by examining root causes, organizing to improve community conditions and advancing stakeholder engagement. But more than that, our grantee partners are mobilizing to build collective and community power to dismantle the systems, structures and institutions that uphold systemic racism.

Highlights from our grantees in 2021 include:

  • Reimagining economic systems by establishing a housing cooperative on the West Side and Lower West Side.
  • Addressing the carceral system by eliminating cash bond.
  • Developing new solutions for public safety with a focus on reinvesting in communities with the necessary resources to help them heal from past harm and keep them safe.
  • Developing community organizing campaigns that challenge institutions to invest in LGBTQ+ and Black communities, including campaigns that address Black needs and advance Black leadership.
  • Listening to community members and organizing them around the City of Chicago’s budget process, with an emphasis on how they can influence it.

In addition to working in heat map communities to address incredible need and advocate for just policies, our grantee partners are on the ground helping in many ways—from providing direct cash, food and groceries to translating unemployment documents.

Looking back to four years ago when these heat maps were created, no one could have predicted a pandemic or imagine its devastating impact on these communities. But what we are learning through the work of our grantee partners, is that community heals community—and that community-rooted and community-centered organizations are essential to driving positive and lasting change.


Left image: Organizers advocating for housing protections. Photo courtesy of Lift the Ban Coalition 

Right image: Communities calling for new solutions for public safety. Photo courtesy of Equity and Transformation

Angelica Chavez, Justice Program Officer


Grant Season is Here

On December 15, Field’s Letter of Inquiry portal opened for Spring 2022 grant considerations in the areas of Art, Justice, Leadership Investment and Media & Storytelling. Complete our short, online form by midnight on January 15 to tell us about your work. Apply here: and feel free to share this link with people or organizations who may be interested.

Holiday Greetings

In this time of reflection, gratitude and celebration, our Field family would like to wish you all a very happy holiday season. Thank you for inspiring us each and every day. We wish you peace and good health for 2022!