Chairman of the Midwest, JPMorgan Chase
Megacity. That’s what Chicago is predicted to become by 2030, making it the third U.S. city to reach a total population over 10 million. “I think a ‘megacity’ is one that has the capacity to be a global city,” says Glenn Tilton, chairman of the Midwest, JPMorgan Chase.
As a board member of World Business Chicago since former Mayor Richard Daley established it in 1999, Mr. Tilton’s role expanded to co-chair after Mayor Rahm Emanuel broadened the plan and tripled the board. “This is certainly a more detailed effort,” says Mr. Tilton. “It has 10 strategies, which are an expansion of bringing corporate headquarters to downtown Chicago.”
The former CEO of United Airlines, known for his knowledge and experience in complex global businesses, emphasizes the importance of creating a plan rooted in reality. “As Mayor Emanuel has said on more than one occasion, the trajectory of the competitiveness of the region leading up to the development of the plan has not been encouraging.” He continues, “Setting a fact-based precedent for the prior 10 years provides an understanding of what you need to do to reverse a trend. We have what the mayor refers to as ‘North Stars.’ We know what we’re focused on accomplishing, but now we have to do it.”
At JPMorgan Chase, Mr. Tilton, who is considered a prolific rainmaker, has been working rigorously since his first day on the job one year ago, building and reinforcing the firm’s business and brand throughout the Midwest.
Mr. Tilton’s work with World Business Chicago is also tied to his participation in the civic community. In 2011, he was named chairman of the American Cancer Society’s national program, CEOs Against Cancer. Joining organizations addressing topics including education, globalization and economics is also a priority; currently, he serves on the boards for Big Shoulders Fund, After School Matters, The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, The Commercial Club of Chicago and The Economic Club of Chicago, among others. “I try to make sure they’re connected to a personal theme,” he says, “because then I’m able to tie one to the other.”