Mayor-elect Rahm Emanuel has appointed John Pfeiffer, a gay man, as the first deputy commissioner of the Department of Family and Support Services. Evelyn Diaz will serve as commissioner.
Pfeiffer is currently the executive director and CEO of Inspiration Corporation, a non-profit that operates the Inspiration Cafe and helps more than 3,000 homeless and low-income Chicagoans achieve greater self-sufficiency and stability each year.
Equality Illinois CEO Bernard Cherkasov credited the development to the Chicago Appointments Project, a collaboration involving his organization, the Human Rights Campaign the Gay & Lesbian Leadership Institute and community leaders. The project, according to its web page, seeks to "identify well-qualified openly LGBT candidates for positions in the next mayoral administration and to advocate for their appointments."
"We're so proud of our accomplishment," Cherkasov said. "It just goes to show how committed the mayor is to making sure that the LGBT community is included in his administration."
Pfeiffer previously served as director of operations for New York City's Department of Homeless Services and as a consultant at KPMG, where he focused on the management of nonprofit and public institutions. John earned his B.A. from Northwestern University and his M.P.A. in non-profit and public management from Columbia University.