The economic future of the Midwest rests in part on US immigration policy. The twin realities of a struggling industrial base and population decline demand a rethinking of how the country and region attracts and retains human capital. Join cochairs and members of The Chicago Council's independent task force on US Economic Competitiveness at Risk: A Midwest Call to Action on Immigration Reform, as they release their report, 12 months in the making. This report release event will introduce attendees to immigration initiatives being undertaken throughout the Midwest to promote the region’s economic competitiveness. Visit for more information.

View the agenda here.

Project Director

Tamar Jacoby is president and CEO of ImmigrationWorks USA. She is a nationally known journalist and author. She has also served as a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, as a senior writer and justice editor for Newsweek, and as the deputy editor of The New York Times op-ed page. She is currently a Schwartz Fellow at the New America Foundation.

Task Force Cochairs

Governor Chet Culver served two terms as Iowa’s secretary of state and was then elected governor in 2006. Governor Culver has been appointed by President Obama and by the US Senate and currently serves on the board with the Farmer Mac. Most recently he has founded the Chet Culver Group, a renewable energy efficiency and infrastructure consultancy.

Richard M. Daley is the longest-serving mayor in Chicago’s history. Prior to his 22-year tenure as mayor, he was a state senator and county prosecutor. He now serves as a distinguished senior fellow at the University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy and as of counsel to Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP, a national law firm based in Chicago.

Joe Loughrey was with Cummins Inc., the world’s largest independent diesel engine manufacturer, for over 35 years until he retired in 2009. He served as vice chairman of Cummins, as president and chief operating officer, and was a member of its board of directors and the board of The Cummins Foundation. 

Doris Meissner, former commissioner of the US Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), is a senior fellow at the Migration Policy Institute, where she directs the institute’s US immigration policy work. From 1993-2000, she served in the Clinton administration as commissioner of the INS. Her accomplishments included reforming the nation's asylum system, creating new strategies for managing US borders, improving naturalization and other services for immigrants, and strengthening cooperation with Mexico, Canada, and other countries.

Clare Muñana is a public sector, not-for-profit, and international management consultant operating her own firm. Previously she worked with a public sector financial management consulting group in Chicago. Mayor Richard M. Daley appointed her as a member of the Chicago Board of Education in 1999 and she was then elected by the board members in 2004 as the vice president of the Board of Education of the City of Chicago. She also serves on the board of The Chicago Council on Global Affairs.

M. Michael “Mike” Rounds served five terms in the South Dakota State Senate. In 1995 he was chosen by his peers to serve as Senate majority leader, a post he held for six years. Rounds was sworn in as South Dakota’s 31st governor in 2003 and reelected in 2006. He has now returned to his insurance and real estate business. 

John W. Rowe is the chairman emeritus of the Chicago-based Exelon Corporation, one of the nation’s largest electric utilities. He previously worked with New England Electric System, Central Maine Power Company, Consolidated Rail Corporation, and at the law firm of Isham, Lincoln & Beale. In both 2008 and 2009, Institutional Investor named Rowe the best electric utility CEO in America. Rowe serves on the board of The Chicago Council on Global Affairs.

Samuel C. Scott III is the retired chairman, president, and CEO of Corn Products International, Inc. and the chairman of the Chicago Sister Cities International Program.  He serves on the board of Motorola Solutions, Inc., The Bank of New York Mellon Corporation, Abbott Laboratories, Northwestern Memorial HealthCare, The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, and the Chicago Urban League.  

Carole Segal is the cofounder of Crate and Barrel, the founder and former CEO of Foodstuffs, and the president of the Segal Family Foundation. MrSegal is a trustee of Rush University Medical Center and chairman of the board of overseers at Rush University. She is a trustee emeritus of Bates College, a life trustee of the Illinois Institute of Technology, and a member of the board of directors of WBEZ-Chicago Public Media.

Generous funding for this project is being provided by the Exelon Foundation, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, The Robert R. McCormick Foundation, Searle Funds at The Chicago Community Trust, Lumina Foundation, and Chicago Council Board Member Clare Muñana.



   Event audio:

   Welcome and Introduction
   of the Report
   Marshall M. Bouton
   President, The Chicago Council 
   on Global Affairs

   John Rowe
   Chairman Emeritus, Exelon

   Panel 1
   What the Midwest Needs
   From Immigration Reform

   Panel 2
   Highlights of Local
   Integration Initiatives

   Remarks by
   Carole Segal
   Cofounder, Crate and Barrel

   Remarks by
   Chet Culver
   Former Governor of Iowa

   Remarks by
   Richard M. Daley
   Former Mayor, City of Chicago

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