President and CEO
Edgar Ramirez joined Chicago Commons in 2010 as Associate Executive Director. Edgar has experience as a community organizer in the Little Village neighborhood, working on issues such as youth and parent leadership development, green space improvement, and anti-violence campaigns. In 2008, Edgar became the Advocacy and Leadership Director at Erie Neighborhood House, where he was instrumental in organizing agency staff and participants on behalf of issues such as child care income eligibility, comprehensive immigration reform, and job development for youth. Edgar also served as an adjunct professor at Loyola University. He currently serves on Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle’s Latino Advisory Committee and several neighborhood planning groups. Edgar holds a master’s degree from the School of Social Service Administration from the University of Chicago and a bachelor’s degree from DePaul University. Edgar was also selected as a fellow for the 2016 Leadership Greater Chicago Class and recently became a member of Chicago’s Economic Club.
Chief Financial Officer
Dhiren Shah joined Chicago Commons in 2001 and has been in the financial sector since 1987. Dhiren began working in nonprofit management as the Chief Financial Officer for Bethel New Life, Inc. in 1991. From 1998-2001, Dhiren led the financial team at Francis W. Parker School as the Chief Financial Officer. His educational background includes a bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Bombay received in 1979 and he is also a Certified Public Accountant and a Certified Management Accountant. Dhiren is a member of the Illinois CPA Society and a committee member for H.O.M.E. and the Bear Necessities Pediatric Cancer Association. He volunteers for CPAs for the Public Interest, and the Independent Schools Association of the Central States.
Senior Vice President of External Affairs and Strategy
Sarah Frick oversees the organization’s communications, strategy, data and fundraising efforts. Since joining Chicago Commons, Sarah has more than doubled the organization’s fundraising efforts, supported the launch of the Family Hub Program and helped create Chicago Commons’ new Emerging Leadership Council. Sarah and the Development Team have initiated partnerships with Bloomingdale’s, Kendra Scott, The British International School, and Macy’s. Prior to joining Commons, Sarah was the Senior Director of Marketing and Communications for United Way of Metropolitan Chicago, which in partnership with United Way World Wide, is part of a global system of change in more than 40 countries. In her role, Sarah led the organization in creating community awareness of the issues surrounding income, education and health. Most recently Sarah was accepted into the Crain’s Leadership Academy 2017 and completed a two-year Executive Leadership Institute program at University of Michigan’s School of Social Work in 2016. Sarah currently serves as the Chairman of the SSA #63 Commission in West Humboldt Park. Her volunteer work includes Host Committee for the Joffrey Ballet, Team Captain for the Alzheimer’s Memory Walk, Fundraising Chair for Texas A&M University Alumni Association, was an active member of the Women’s Leadership Council of United Way. In 2012, Sarah was announced as one of Today Chicago Woman’s Top 100 Women to Watch. Sarah has guest lectured on branding, advertising and non-profit management at college campuses including Loyola and East West University. Sarah graduated from Texas A&M University with her bachelor’s in Communications and a minor in English.
Vice President of Senior Care
Cary Crawford began his career in senior care administration in 1994, as a branch manager for Home Care Personal Services, Inc. in Naperville, Illinois. He has held various leadership roles in the field, joining Chicago Commons in 2011 as the Director of Senior Care. He holds a Master of Business Administration degree with an emphasis on healthcare administration from Benedictine University, where he also obtained a Bachelors of Business Administration degree. Cary is a board member and past Vice President at Illinois Association of Community Care Programs Homecare Providers, an Advisory Committee Board Member and former Board of Trustees member for the Community Care Program, and a former trustee of the SEIU Healthcare Illinois Home Care & Child Care. Cary is also a fund member of the American Society on Aging.
Vice President of Education and Program Operations
Andrew Krugly oversees operations, curriculum and staff training for Commons’ early education and adult education programs. His past roles include serving as the Director of Education at the Ounce of Prevention Fund for the Educare Learning Network, and serving as a successful elementary school principal for over seventeen years. In his role as principal Andrew was a vanguard in behavioral and academic reform. He led sustained implementation of systemic change including: the integration of a Spanish immersion program, the shift in the Special Education service delivery model to one of inclusion, and the implementation of Positive Behavior Intervention and Supports (PBIS) and Response to Intervention (RtI). As a nationally recognized presenter and consultant he has spoken around the country on the use of data for continuous quality improvement in early education, high impact early childhood education instructional strategies, and PBIS. Andrew has a Masters in Educational Administration and Supervision and a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education both from the University of Illinois, and is a past recipient of Kohl International Teaching Award.
Vice President of Human Resources
Carman Weathington joined Chicago Commons in October 2014, and has been a leader in human resources since 1989. Carman began her leadership in HR at Advocate Health Care in 1992 were she served in several leadership roles. After leaving Advocate, she led HR at several quality driven organizations, The Family Link, Britannica.com, Vanguard Healthcare – MacNeal Hospital, Independent HR Consultants, and The International Fellowship of Christians and Jews. Prior to taking the helm at Chicago Commons, Carman led the HR department at LEARN Charter School Network. She is employee focused, culture sensitive, compliance driven, promotes best practices and values the input and feedback from managers to create a customer focused and friendly HR function. Carman has experience in creating an HR department, establishing workflows, create performance feedback systems, successful skilled base talent acquisition, on boarding and retention strategies.