John Balkcom (Chair)
Balkcom has been a longtime adviser to management and boards. He retired in 2000 after 25 years as a management consultant, and continues to serve as a corporate director and advisory board member for a number of public and private enterprises. Most recently, he became a member of the Governing Board of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. He is also President Emeritus of St. John's College, Santa Fe, NM.
A partner at the renown design firm Pentagram, Bierut currently serves as a director of the Architectural League of New York and New Yorkers for Parks. The former president of the New York Chapter American Institute of Graphic Arts, he has won hundreds of design awards and his work is represented in several permanent collections.
Finkel is the president of Prism Capital, where he has recruited and coordinated two investment teams and overseen equity fund deployment into 14 portfolio companies and mezzanine fund deployment into 20 companies. Currently, he serves on the boards of Artromick and SterilMed; he is the founder of the Illinois Venture Capital Association, from which he received the prestigious Fellows Award.
Lee Francis (Vice-Chair)
An internist and CEO at Erie Family Health Center, Francis is clinical instructor of internal medicine at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine. He is a past president of Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR), a national organization dedicated to the prevention of violence and nuclear war, and continues to serve on its Board of Directors.
Austin Hirsch (Secretary & Treasurer)
Hirsch is a partner at Reed Smith. His practice encompasses all aspects of business law, including mergers and acquisitions with both financial and strategic parties, corporate and real estate finance, venture capital transactions, partnership and joint ventures, and international transactions, with special expertise in counseling significant privately owned companies.
Paretsky is a writer widely credited with helping transform the role of women in crime fiction, both as writers and as characters. She founded the organization Sisters in Crime, which now has over 4000 members in 15 countries, to serve as an advocate for women in the crime and thriller genre; she has served on the boards of NARAL of Illinois, Thresholds, and Literature for All of Us and is known for her work in support of women's reproductive health. She also is a popular public speaker at libraries and university campuses.
Poste is Co-Director and Chief Scientists, Complex Adaptive Systems Network, Regents’ Professor and Del E. Webb Chair in Health Innovation at Arizona State University. He served as a member of the Defense Science Board from 2003 to 2009 and on the Health Board of the US Department of Defense (DoD); he is currently a member of the US Institute of Medicine Board on Global Health. He has published over 350 research papers and edited 14 books on pharmaceutical technologies and oncology. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society, the Royal College of Pathologists and the UK Academy of Medicine, a Distinguished Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Ratner is a materials chemist, whose work focuses on the interplay between molecular structure and molecular properties. This includes such aspects as molecular electronics, molecular optoelectronics, molecular systems design and biomolecular behavior, as well as quantum and classical methodologies for understanding and predicting molecular structure and responses. The major focus of his research for the last three decades has been the understanding of charge transfer and charge transport processes based on molecular structures, ranging from nonadiabatic intramolecular behavior to aspects of molecular devices, including photovoltaics, conductive polymers, molecular transport junctions and molecular switches.
William Revelle (Vice-Chair)
An American Association for the Advancement of Science fellow, Revelle directs the personality program in the Department of Psychology at Northwestern University. Formerly, he served on the Federation of American Scientists' Board of Directors. He is chairman of the board of Calcomco, a small information company that publishes the San Diego Daily Transcript and Columbus Business Journal.
Sachnoff is a lawyer at Reed Smith. Previously, he served as founding partner at Sachnoff & Weaver, Ltd, where he represented individual and business clients in complex litigation and business matters. He possesses a strong commitment to pro bono work, active as a board member of the Lawyers Committee for Nuclear Arms Control and Lawyers Alliance for World Security.
A banker with community investment expertise, Shapiro is a pioneer in socially responsible investing. As president of the Social Investment Forum, her work was nationally recognized. Previously, she worked as an executive vice president of ShoreBank Corp.