Illinois School of Architecture Alumna Eleanor Gorski To Lead CAC
Gorski will be leaving her current position as executive director of the Cook County Land Bank Authority and beginning in her new role with the CAC in December. She comes to the CAC with over 25 years of experience in urban design, architecture, and historic preservation.
During her time with Chicago’s Department of Planning and Development, Eleanor Gorski led the five-year renovation of Wrigley Field and the development of the city’s Fulton Market Innovation District. Other notable design projects that Gorski has been involved in include the Obama Presidential Center and Lincoln Yards. She also served as director of the Landmarks Commission for five years, created a community review process for the Chicago Plan Commission, and established numerous design guidelines for city landmark districts and neighborhoods.Throughout her career, she has used design as a tool to foster vibrant growth while also creating more equitable urban communities.
“Great design is ultimately defined by the way people use it and the powerful impact it can have on their lives,” Gorski said. “I believe the way to create more equitable communities is to design for sustainability and access so that we create opportunities for all to experience urban spaces—and I’m excited to work with a group of people who are passionate about that same philosophy.”
The Chicago Architecture Center is a nonprofit cultural organization “dedicated to inspiring people to discover why design matters.” The CAC promotes Chicago as a center of architectural innovation and does so through engaging exhibits, boat tours, and educational programming. CAC board chair and Illinois Architecture alumna Ann Thompson (BS ’90, MArch’93) shared, “It’s a huge day for the CAC and a great example of alumni influencing the future or our city. Eleanor will have a huge platform with this position, and I am very excited to see where she takes it!”
Gorski and Thompson are among the inaugural members of the Illinois Architecture Alumni Advisory Board. The board serves in an advisory capacity to the school and its director, Francisco Rodríguez-Suárez, working to foster communication and networking between students, faculty, and alumni as well as within the broader professional community. The school also seeks to expand upon and grow its influence across Chicago. Eleanor Gorski’s new role as CEO of the CAC will certainly strengthen the school’s ties to the city of Chicago, while also demonstrating the vigor of a strong alumni network.