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Heather M. Tarczan
Director of Communications & Administration

Suzet McKinney, DrPH, MPH, Named Executive Director

 Illinois Medical District Commission


CHICAGO (August 26, 2015) – The Illinois Medical District Commission (IMDC) announced today that Dr. Suzet McKinney will serve as the new Executive Director effective September 21, 2015. Amongst other responsibilities, Dr. McKinney will be charged with continuation of the 2012 strategic plan created with Illinois Medical District (IMD) stakeholders and the Boston Consulting Group which prioritizes the IMD’s key initiatives into four key “pillars.” These include the development of approximately 45 acres of land, fostering translational research, promoting community health, and managing and leveraging clinical data.

“Our executive search process was thorough and deliberate, we wanted to identify the best candidate and are confident that Suzet exemplifies the skills and leadership we need to propel the IMD to the next level,” said Jim Clewlow, Vice-President of the Illinois Medical District Commission. “Suzet has a firm understanding of the Commission’s goals and priorities and together – with the ongoing support of our IMD partners – we will succeed in transforming the IMD.” 

Dr. Barry Dorn, an orthopedic surgeon and Associate Director for Healthcare Negotiation and Conflict Resolution at the Harvard School of Public Health added, “Suzet is incredibly accomplished and has a wealth of information to offer about the importance of healthcare in our current economic environment. She is gracious and engaging and will undoubtedly inspire other women and people of color with her hard work and in-depth analysis of the needs of the IMDC and how to achieve them. She will be a tremendous asset to the IMDC, just as she is to us at Harvard.”

The IMDC announced it would search for a new Executive Director in February and established a search committee that included representatives from all four IMD hospitals and the Chicago Community Trust. More than 60 applicants were considered for the role. The Commission voted unanimously in favor of Dr. McKinney’s appointment at a special meeting this morning.

“I am both thrilled and humbled to be joining the IMDC and working with the Commission and staff in putting the IMD into the national spotlight by showcasing the incredible work of the hospitals, non-profits and private companies within the District,” said Dr. McKinney. “The IMD is the largest urban medical district in the country. My goal is to not only continue the efforts to improve access to care and patient outcomes for local residents seeking care in the IMD, but to also firmly establish the IMD as a key US destination for global medical tourism.”

Most recently Dr. McKinney has served as Deputy Commissioner of the Bureau of Public Health Preparedness & Emergency Response and the Division of Women & Children’s Health at the Chicago Department of Public Health, where she has served in various roles since 2002.  While serving as Deputy Commissioner, Dr. McKinney was responsible for leading the department’s public health and healthcare preparedness efforts, and integrating these programs into the larger spectrum of the City’s Public Safety initiatives, developing a strategy and planning for the Division of Women & Children’s Health, ensuring quality service to more than 40,000 low-income women and children as well overseeing more than $26 million in both state and federal grant funding.

Dr. McKinney received her Doctor of Public Health from the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health; her Master of Public Health was obtained at Benedictine University and her undergraduate degree in Biology was conferred by Brandeis University. Dr. McKinney also has academic appointments with the Harvard University T.H. Chan School of Public Health and the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health. She is involved with a number of professional and civic service affiliations including the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, U.S. Department of Defense, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U. S. Centers for Disease Control and the National Academies of Science, Institute of Medicine.


The Illinois Medical District Commission (IMDC) fosters economic growth of the Illinois Medical District (IMD) by supporting healthcare, research, program, technology commercialization and real estate development initiatives. The IMDC facilitates collaboration among clinicians, academic researchers, private industry and patients, acting as an independent third party convener that brings institutions and individuals together around common needs, goals and themes. Our mission is to be a leader in patient care and medical research utilizing our diversity and unique assets while driving economic growth.

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