Introducing the Chi Hack Night Board of Directors

Published on Apr 11, 2019 by Derek Eder

The Chi Hack Night Board of Directors

We announced in November 2018 that after almost 7 years and 300 events, Chi Hack Night was forming as a non-profit. Since then, we’ve been hard at work behind the scenes forming our new organization. Today, we are excited to announce a major step on that journey: our first Board of Directors!

The Chi Hack Night Board of Directors is responsible for governing our new organization, as well as running our events, managing our website, keeping the books, and doing all the other things needed to make Chi Hack Night happen. We’ll share more in the coming months about our working committees, bylaws and how you can get involved.

The board consists of 11 members, who will each serve a 1 or 2 year term and are either appointed or elected by the members of Chi Hack Night. Some, like me, are long time leaders and attendees of hack night, and others are new faces.

They are all wonderful, talented, and dedicated people. Let’s meet them!

Kulsum Ameji

Kulsum Ameji

Board seat: Appointed
Term: 2 years

Kulsum is an attorney, facilitator, speaker, and cultural curator. She has many years of experience working directly with communities on various issues. She believes firmly in community legal education, asset-based community development, civic engagement, and economic empowerment. She also teaches courses at Northwestern University.

Emily Drevets

Emily Drevets

Board seat: Elected
Term: 1 year

Emily is a software engineer in the city of Chicago with a background in writing, editing, improv, and fun. She has been a regular fixture at Chi Hack Night since early 2015, after finding out about the event through an improv-related email. Emily is the founder of the Fun Congress, the special events committee of Chi Hack Night, and can often be found holding a mic and talking at people at the start and end of many hack nights. As a board member, her focus is on CHN event operations and programming (not the computer kind), and on new member onboarding. Her three-word introduction at ChiHackNight changes regularly but often involves food and bikes.

Derek Eder

Derek Eder, President

Board seat: Elected
Term: 2 years

Derek is an entrepreneur, developer and one of the leaders of the civic technology community in Chicago. He is founder and partner at DataMade, a company that tells stories and builds tools with data, and co-founder of Chi Hack Night when it was started in March of 2012. Derek has built and collaborated on dozens of civic and data applications including ClearStreets, 2nd City Zoning, Chicago’s Million Dollar Blocks, Councilmatic and Dedupe.io.

Steve Ediger

Steve Ediger, Treasurer

Board seat: Elected
Term: 1 year

Steve has logged over 40 years in the computer industry. From Product Acquisitions Director for a lead distributor at the beginning of the computer market to Worldwide Computer Product Manager for major global manufacturer to IT Director at several leading international schools, he has helped shape whatever corner of the industry in which he works. Steve currently owns Steve Ediger Associates a consultancy focusing on facilitation and planning, and works with a variety of Chicago and global groups working on technology, sustainability and societal change. Steve joined Chi Hack Night in September 2013 and has taken on various roles, including facilitating teams working on our incorporation as a nonprofit organization at the end of 2018.

Mieko Furuhashi

Mieko Furuhashi

Board seat: Appointed
Term: 1 year

Mieko has many years of experience as a quality assurance and test automation engineer and takes a holistic approach to improve software quality, focusing on engineering productivity, team building, and software development process management. When she is not in her office, she gives back to the community as a board member at the North Side Housing and Supportive Services to end homelessness in Chicago. She is a regular attendee of Chi Hack Night since late 2017. She greets and welcomes everyone to the event, and also a core member of the Chicago Books to Women in Prison breakout group.

Josh Kalov

Josh Kalov

Board seat: Elected
Term: 2 years

Josh is a GIS developer and data analyst and is the founder of Kalov Strategies, LLC. In both professional and volunteer roles has worked on government transparency and civic data projects. He is particularly focused on public education and has previously served on a Local School Council. He has been a regular attendee of Chi Hack Night since episode #2. He hopes Chi Hack Night continues to be an organization that nurtures meeting, learning, and collaborating on social issues.

Steve Luker

Steve Luker

Board seat: Appointed
Term: 2 years

Having an affinity for curly braces and the properly placed semicolon, it was only natural that Steve became a .NET developer.

Born and raised in Chicago, he is often seen rolling around the city in his power wheelchair trying to avoid his natural enemies — badly cracked sidewalks and their cousins, sidewalks without curb cuts. He recalls being at his first Chi Hack Night (#110) learning about how other people were using data to solve other problems that people encountered in the city and thinking, “hey, I think I could do that.”

Katie O'Shea

Katie O’Shea, Secretary

Board seat: Elected
Term: 2 years

Katie is a content manager at 3Points, a public relations firm in Chicago. She develops articles and other written content for clients and for the firm, helping build cohesive brand stories. She holds a B.A. in English from the University of Chicago. In her free time, she also draws on drink coasters (Art on Coasters). Katie’s first Chi Hack Night was a community feedback session in autumn 2015 — and although she had no prior experience with Chi Hack Night, listening to the thoughtful discussion questions and feedback of the Chi Hack Night community quickly convinced her that this was a community she wanted to be part of.

Eric Sherman

Eric Sherman

Board seat: Elected
Term: 1 year

Eric is a full stack developer (who learned how to code at Chi Hack Night!), GIS consultant, and public policy expert. He is very passionate about empowering marginalized groups and the potential ways for art and technology to intersect to tell powerful, relevant stories, and has spoken on the subject. As board member, his focus is on outreach and community events, managing the website, project support, and booking.

His first Chi Hack night was #71, and despite not knowing how to code or working in tech at all he quickly got hooked on the free pizza(RIP) and inspiring conversation. He first collaborated as a GIS expert for the Slow Roll Bicycle Equity Project and since done work for the Illinois Department of Transportation, City Bureau, Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago, and many others.

Cameron Sow

Cameron Sow

Board seat: Appointed
Term: 1 year

Cameron Sow is a graduate of Northwestern University School of Education and Social Policy. He is an educator, life-long learner and aspiring entrepreneur. His work has consistently been at the intersection of education, civic life and cultural institutions. For the past two summers he led the Citizen Science Ambassador program at Adler Planetarium, an interdisciplinary STEM program for bright Chicago students. Before that he helped develop exhibits and educational programming for his hometown’s historical collections, and developed a high-level learning strategy for a co-working space for creative professionals. He currently works at Shedd Aquarium as an Engagement Specialist. His three-word introduction at Chi Hack Night has been “learning about learning”.

Monique Wingard

Monique Wingard

Board seat: Appointed
Term: 2 years

Monique Wingard is a seasoned digital media professional with more than 15 years of success across the public media, social media, and communications industries.

Throughout her career, Monique has held leadership positions with organizations including The Ohio House of Representatives, The Ohio Senate, Ohio University, JeffreyM Consulting, McDonald’s Corporation, 1871, Black Girls CODE, and Urban Ministries, Inc.

Monique holds a M.A. from Ohio University, a M.S. from Case Western Reserve University, and a B.A. from The Ohio State University.

She is an advocate of women and youth in STEAM, founder of The Civic Tech Collective and owner of SAVVY Consulting & Communications LLC.


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