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Shelley A. Davis, President and Executive Director

With more than 25 years of experience in the nonprofit sector, Shelley joined the Forest Preserve Foundation in 2013 as its first executive director. Previously, she was vice president of programs and advocacy for Chicago Foundation for Women and national adviser to the Women’s Initiative for Self-Employment. Shelley is a lecturer and senior mentor at The University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy and serves on the Illinois Commission on Juvenile Justice. She chairs the Board of the Albert Pick Jr. Fund.

Shelley is a member of the Board of Trustees of Lawrence University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology. She holds a master’s in urban planning and policy from University of Illinois at Chicago.

In 2017, UIC’s College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs honored Shelley with the Jim Marek Alumni Appreciation Award,  which recognizes

individuals for their dedication to the fields of urban planning and public administration and their contributions to the development of the college's students and alumni. Make It Better recognized Shelley as one of Chicago's Top Black Women of Impact.

Shelley was inspired to join the Forest Preserve Foundation because she believes access to nature is important for all children and families. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time outdoors and learning more about birds and plants with her two children.

Contact Shelley at 312-603-8349 or shelley.davis@forestpreservefoundation.org.

Clarmarie I. Keenan, Development Manager

Clarmarie has more than 20 years of experience in non-profit management, operations, and development and advancement. Previously, she was the Director of Institutional Advancement for VanderCook College of Music and previously the Executive Director of the Nineteenth Century Club.

She completed her term representing the Town Board on the Community Mental Health Board in June 2017. In May 2017, Clarmarie was sworn in as Supervisor of the Township for a four-year term.

She is an active member of the Rotary Club of Oak Park-River Forest, where she has served as president. She begins a three-year term as District 6450's chair for the Rotary Foundation Annual Fund on July 1, 2019.

Clarmarie holds an undergraduate degree in sociology and psychology from the University of Michigan. She received her graduate degree in Human Services from Concordia University Chicago.

Born and raised in the northwest suburbs, Clarmarie has always regarded the Forest Preserves as a real treasure - providing opportunities for relaxation, exploration, and inspiration every season of the year. She is committed to her work with the Foundation to support the Preserves, its facilities, and programs. Outside of work, Clarmarie enjoys reading, gardening, cooking, photography, spending time with family and friends, and enjoying all the culture and entertainment Chicago has to offer.​

Contact her at clarmarie.keenan@forestpreservefoundation.org.

Cassandra West, Communications and marketing manager

Cassandra spent more than 20 years working as an editor and writer for daily newspapers, including the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times and Kansas City Star. She has wide ranging experiences in corporate and non profit communications as a staff member and consultant, with an emphasis on social justice and environmentalism. She is a former director of communications for Chicago Foundation Women and adjunct lecturer at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism.

Cassandra has a bachelor's degree from Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts and studied U.S. history at Northwestern University. She reads widely on topics related to the environment, government and history.  She enjoys hiking and sharing her nature photos on Instagram. A passion for community gardening led to her to found, Seeding Chicago, Chicago's first blog dedicated to covering the city's urban agriculture movement.

Contact her at cassandra.west@forestpreservefoundation.org.

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