Bridget Gainer, Founder  

Bridget Gainer brings a unique perspective to civic and business life with a foot in both the public and private sectors. Bridget is the VP, Global Public Affairs for Aon and a Commissioner on the County Board, bringing over 20 years of experience in non-profit, government and corporate sectors. Bridget began her career as a community organizer in New York City; she continued that work in Chicago where she founded a community center at Senn High School. Bridget then went to work for the City of Chicago in a variety of roles focused on public private partnerships. In 2001, she began working at Aon, a global risk management firm, beginning in finance with a focus on mergers and acquisitions and treasury. She later transitioned to manage the firm’s strategic engagement with governments around the world. 

Elected to the Cook County Board in 2010, Bridget called for the creation of a Pension Committee and was appointed its first Chairman. As Chair, Ms. Gainer brought transparency to the County’s Fund and launched an open-data pension website to facilitate a real conversation for fair and sustainable pension reform. 

In 2013 Commissioner Gainer completed three years of organizing and outreach with the creation of the Cook County Land Bank, the region’s most comprehensive policy to reduce the amount and impact of vacant land and abandoned buildings throughout Cook County. The land bank is governed by a 15-member board, chaired by Commissioner Gainer. 

Most recently, and with the support of United States Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Commissioner Gainer launched Off The Sidelines here in Chicago to encourage more young women to ‘take their ideas to action’ and has quickly grown the organization to over 2,600 members.

Commissioner Gainer’s policy work has been written about in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Crain’s and editorial boards across the region. In addition, she has been the recipient of awards from Action Now, Woodstock Institute, the AIDS Foundation of Chicago, the Urban Land Institute and Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights. 

A native of Chicago, Bridget lives on the North side with her husband and their three children and sits on the boards of the Big Shoulders Fund and the 100 Club of Chicago.