Meet Our Team
Meet our Board of Directors. We are so grateful to have such an amazing group of dedicated leadership to support Jackson Chance Foundation.
Board of Directors
Carrie Meghie, Founder
Terry Meghie, Founder
Risa is a Licensed Nursing Home Administrator and has been an advocate for the elderly for over 19 years. Risa has held multiple leadership roles in both acute and community based health care organizations in the for profit and the not for profit arenas.
After having a son prematurely who was hospitalized for 31 days, Risa is keenly aware of the burden that the cost of parking can be on families of newborns in the NICU. She looks forward to tapping into her experiences in the nonprofit arena to help The Jackson Chance Foundation continue to meet the needs of NICU families as well as expand its reach to new families.
Mr. Kaplanoglu serves as Vice President of Lend Lease’s US Telecom Business Unit. He also teaches project management courses at Northwestern University’s Master of Project Management program. Originally from Istanbul, Turkey, Mr. Kaplanoglu holds a PhD in Construction Engineering and Management from the Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago. He has MSc and BS degrees in Civil Engineering from Istanbul University.
Mr. Kaplanoglu’s son Marko spent seven weeks in the NICU, where he was neighbors with Jackson. During that time, he observed first-hand the financial struggles many families faced, and how it affected their ability to be with their hospitalized children. He is thrilled to help families spend more time with their NICU babies and to honor Jackson’s legacy.
Ben Kochalski is a Senior Vice President in The John Buck Company’s Development Group. Ben’s responsibilities include development feasibility analysis, valuation analysis, and joint venture structuring. In addition, Ben is focused on formulating business plans for new business and value-add investment opportunities.
He is excited to use his expertise of partnership and collaboration to help the growth of Jackson Chance Foundation. After having two children in the NICU at Lurie Children’s, he knows just how important it is to spend as much time with your child and wants to ensure that parking is not a barrier for families.
Ivona is a top-producing realtor with Berkshire Hathaway KoenigRubloff Realty Group. She been recognized by the Chicago Association of Realtors® as one of its Top 1% Brokers. In 2014, Ivona Kutermankiewicz Group earned the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices esteemed Chairman’s Circle –Diamond, awarded to top one-half percent of the Network’s sales professionals. Ivona is a Certified Luxury Home Marketing Specialist and a Certified Negotiation Expert. Her area of expertise includes luxury condominiums, single family homes and new construction projects.
While she has been a proud Chicagoan for most of her life, Ivona was born in Poland and speaks fluent Polish. In her free time she enjoys modern architecture, international travel, fashion and fitness (she has a Boston Marathon medal on the wall of her office). Ivona and her fiancé Steven live in Bucktown with their rescue dog Jack Bear and cat Angelina.
Ivona has been involved with Jackson Chance Foundation since its first Ping Pong Ball in 2013. This summer, she joined Team Chance to run the Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago half marathon and was the top fundraiser. Ivona is excited to join JCF’s Board of Directors and give back to NICU families.
Laura is a sales veteran who has ranked among the top 3% of sales performers in Chicago. She
is well-known throughout the real estate community for her tenacity and drive, and prides herself on total commitment to clients’ best interests. This includes everything from negotiating the best possible price for buyers to attaining the highest possible price for sellers in the quickest amount of time. A Chicago native, Laura has an in depth knowledge of the Chicago real estate market and works with buyers and sellers throughout the city. Laura spent the early part of her career in marketing for a major marketing company working with Fortune 500 clients. She also invests herself in community life by actively participating in fundraising events for March of Dimes and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
After having twins born at 29 weeks and a 2 month stay in the NICU, Laura wants to alleviate an extra burden for parents dealing with similar circumstances.
Eva is the director of marketing and communications at The Chicago Community Trust, where she is involved in practices that support the vision for all Trust marketing and communications activities. During her tenure, she has developed the branding, messaging and marketing for the “We Are Chicago” $1 billion campaign for the Trust’s endowment. Penar was instrumental in creating the ambassador program for On The Table that created a social viral campaign that led to over 17 million digital impressions for that civic engagement initiative. She worked closely with the Sun-Times Foundation in developing the logistics and structure of the Community Match Program that provides dollars and visibility for the region’s nonprofits.
Prior to joining the Trust, Penar was part of the launch team behind Time Out Chicago. As marketing manager/events, promotions and publicity, she developed partnerships that made the introduction to the Chicago market so successful. Penar also worked at the Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum for five years. During her tenure there, she worked on the “Gelman Collection: Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera and 20th Century Mexican Art” exhibition and supported an expansion that tripled the museum’s size. Her achievements were recognized at the Chicago Emmy ceremony in 2004, where a public-service announcement that she coordinated with Univision Channel 66 won an award. She also worked as a communications associate for the Chicago Millennium Celebration, Department of Cultural Affairs for the City of Chicago. Penar is fluent in Polish and Spanish. In 2009, Time Out Chicago recognized Penar as a “Super Connector” in its feature about Chicagoans who go above and beyond in networking. In 2012 Penar participated in the Young Atlanticist Summit during the NATO summit that took place in Chicago.
She is currently the chair of the steering committee member for CommA, the professional association of communicators affiliated with the Council on Foundations. She is as an active member of NTEN (Nonprofit Technology Network) and a steering committee member for the group’s conferences since 2012 and co-founder of 501 Tech Club Chicago Chapter. She is active in the puppetry world of Chicago, supporting the International Puppetry Festival as a member of the Events Committee. Penar is the chair of the Community Council for the Gene Siskel Film Center. Eva is excited to bring awareness to Jackson Chance Foundation and help the organization impact more families.
Alan is a graduate of Michigan State University and the University of Detroit School of Law. He worked for several years in high net worth finance and wealth planning, before switching gears and transitioning into legal recruiting for law firms in the Midwest.
Alan has been involved with JCF since its inception, first as a supporter and then as a Planning Board member. He and his wife have gotten to know Jackson’s family and are eager to support in any way possible. Alan is a legal recruiting salesman in Chicago and also spent several years in banking.
Kristine is a Vice President for The John Buck Company as a member of JBC’s capital markets group. Her focus is sourcing, analyzing, closing transactions and venture relationships for JBC Funds. In this role, she also works on asset management, valuation, and disposition of assets already held in the JBC Funds.
Prior to joining JBC in 2006, Kristine worked in the portfolio strategy group for Equity Office Properties – the largest publicly traded REIT at the time with more than 600 properties. In this capacity, she was responsible for evaluating lease economics, operating efficiencies and hold- versus-sell strategies for 113 properties totaling more than 20 million square feet in the Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. office markets.
Kristine received her B.S. in finance from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business. She is a Board Member at Working in the Schools (WITS), Co-Chair of the Membership Committee at CREW Chicago, Chair of The John Buck Company Civic Involvement Committee (2014-2015), and Co-Chair of the 2010 The John Buck Company Spring Fling. After having one child in the NICU at Lurie Children’s, she knows just how important it is to spend as much time with your child and she wants to ensure that parking is not a barrier for families.
Ann Marie Simonelli
Esme, joins Jackson Chance Foundation’s Board of Directors with over 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry, focused on the Accounting discipline. Her experience and expense management capabilities will be a true to asset for the organization. On a personal note, Esme is the proud mother of two wonderful children and views parenthood as her greatest accomplishment in life. She is looking forward to working with Jackson Chance Foundation and the team to exceed financial goals and help more families spend time with their babies.
Peter has over 25 years of sales, marketing and branding experience. He played a key role in the launch and development of two hotel brands in the United States, and directly responsible for launching another brand internationally. He directed the sales and marketing efforts for the opening of 12 hotel properties.
Peter is looking forward to getting more intimately involved in the expansive growth of a cause that has such a direct, measurable impact for families. He wants to help relieve the stress of parking expenses so that families can stay focused on their child.