Big Shoulders: MarySue Barrett, President, Metropolitan Planning Council

| Adam J. Hecktman

MarySue Barrett is the President at Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC). The MPC is a key player in the city. They exist, quite simply, to improve Chicagoland’s economic vibrancy and livability.

The MPC works on a broad set of issues using data-driven research. They cross the corporate space, government space, and non-for-profit space, giving them something of a connector vibe.  Know what else is a connector that spans the corporate, government, and NfP space? The Chicago River. The river has been this way since Chicago was first settled.

During the 1770s, Chicago’s first non-Native American settler, Jean Baptiste Point du Sable, built his settlement on the river. In the 1800s, Fort Dearborn was built on the southern bank of the river. The military used the river to bring supplies to the fort. And in 1900, the Army Corps of Engineers famously reversed the flow of the Chicago River, keeping Lake Michigan (the source for the City’s drinking water) clean.

Today, the River is still very much an active part of the city. It is also a source of pride for Chicago’s residents and government. It is as much about recreational opportunities for residents and visitors as it is about economic growth. Watch my latest Big Shoulders interview with MarySue Barrett, live on Advisor.TV, to learn about what is in store for this valuable asset to the city.

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Adam J. Hecktman

You may recognize Adam. He’s a regular on TV, you can hear him on the radio, he’s penned numerous articles and is the co-founder of the Chicago City Data Users Group. But some of Adam’s most important work is done behind the scenes in his role as Microsoft’s Director of Technology and Civic Engagement for Chicago. Tech giants, universities and government leaders turn to Adam for guidance on all matters technology, and he happily obliges, helping Chicago overcome challenges and capitalizing on new, exciting opportunities.