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Last Updated: 12/7/2012

APPG Fifth Annual Business Leaders of Color Panel Discussion

A diverse group of businesspeople seated around a conference table.

The African American Association for Personal and Professional Growth (APPG) hosted the Fifth Annual Business Leaders of Color Panel discussion and networking reception on Wednesday, December 12, 2012.

During the discussion, the opportunity to interact with dynamic business leaders in the Chicagoland area who participate on as well as chair corporate boards; energize organizations and communities; and help promote the next generation of leaders. Each panelist offers a unique perspective and serves as both an example and an inspiration through cultural, civic and educational contributions.

The theme is How to Win at Work and the discussion will include:

  • Key moments when you need to take control of your career
  • What happens when you do not take control of your career
  • How to identify resources, organizations and individuals that can help facilitate a promotion, or a change in job or career
  • Key behaviors that should be changed in order to better enable success
  • How to overcome career challenges or bumps in the road.
Gwendolyn L. Butler
President and Chief Operating Officer, Capri Capital Partners, LLC

Gwendolyn L. Butler is the first African-American female president and chief operating officer in the commercial real estate investment management industry.


In this role at Capri Capital Partners, LLC, one of the country’s leading institutional real estate investment management firms, Butler oversees all investment, finance and marketing personnel of the firm.



Wilfred J. Lucas
President, W. Lucas Group, Inc.

In 2002, Wilfred Lucas founded W. Lucas Group, Inc., an executive coaching organization focused on helping business leaders achieve career success by mastering the corporate environment. The company client list includes national and global companies in banking, insurance, government, healthcare and consulting/accounting, with names such as Harris Bank, Deloitte, CISCO, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, ITW, McDonald’s, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois and Coca-Cola. As president, Lucas is responsible for the overall growth and profitability of the company.

Stephanie D. Neeley
Treasurer, City of Chicago

Stephanie D. Neely, a native Chicagoan who grew up on the South Side, brings to the Office of Treasurer of the City of Chicago more than 20 years of financial services experience with leading investment banking institutions. A former vice president at Northern Trust Global Investments, Neely was responsible for working with public and corporate pension funds. As an African-American woman, Neely created opportunities for minority and women-owned financial services firms by fostering relationships with Northern Trust and thereby helping them establish a foothold in the industry. Neely consistently draws on her work in the fields of asset management, municipal and corporate finance in her role as Treasurer of the City of Chicago.

Theodore I. Yi
Co-Managing Partner, Chicago Office, Quarles & Brady, LLP

Quarles & Brady, LLP is a full-service law firm with 425 attorneys practicing from eight offices in the United States and China. The firm’s Chicago office has 75 attorneys and 55 staff and is the firm’s fastest growing office.


As the Chicago office’s co-managing partner, Theodore Yi is responsible for implementing the strategic plan, overall budget management, client development, recruiting and attorney training and mentoring.

Wednesday, 12/12/12
4:30 PM
Attendee Check-in

Hors d’oeuvres will be served.

5:00 PM
Networking Welcoming Reception
5:30 PM
APPG Chair’s Welcome
James Poole, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago
5:35 PM
Opening Remarks and Introduction of Moderator
Craig Marchbanks, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago
5:40 PM
Introduction of Panelists
Panel Discussion
Norman Baldwin, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago
Stephanie Neely, Treasurer, City of Chicago
Theodore I Yi, Co-Managing Partner, Chicago Office, Quarles & Brady, LLP
Gwendolyn L Butler, President and Chief Operating Officer, Capri Capital Partners, LLC
Wilfred J Lucas, President, The W. Lucas Group, Inc.
Thursday, 12/13/12
6:20 PM
Questions from the Audience
6:50 PM
Closing Remarks
James Poole, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago
7:00 PM
Networking Reception

The event will conclude at 8:00 p.m.

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