Instituto del Progreso Latino (Instituto) has selected Karina Ayala-Bermejo to lead the organization as its next President and CEO.
Karina is a highly regarded leader who has served in a variety of capacities in prominent Chicago entities. She brings to this role significant leadership experience both locally and nationally, a long-standing and deep commitment to the Latino and immigrant communities, and a proven dedication to invest in others and strengthen families.
“We are thrilled to have Karina join Instituto during this exciting time for the organization,” says Andrea Sáenz, Chair of the Instituto Board of Directors. “We are confident that Karina’s extensive experience and commitment to community investment will bring the right energy and expertise to lead Instituto into its next chapter of growth and impact.”
Karina joins Instituto from Metropolitan Family Services where she served as General Counsel and Executive Vice President and the Executive Director of the Legal Aid Society of Metropolitan Family Services. Prior to Metropolitan, she worked for the City of Chicago in Mayor Daley’s administration as Acting Commissioner, First Deputy Commissioner, and Managing Deputy Commissioner for the Department of Human Resources. Karina spent seven years as the Director of Community Services for the Chicago Bar Association where she encouraged attorneys to take on pro bono work and collaborated with the bar and various divisions of the Circuit Court of Cook County on initiatives to improve the justice system. She also served as the first Executive Director of the Sun Times Judge Marovitz Lawyers Lend-A-Hand to Youth Program, a foundation that mobilizes the legal profession around mentoring youth, where she was instrumental in securing a $2 million dollar award. Karina’s legal career began as an attorney in the Litigation Division of the Chicago Board of Education handling labor and employment matters. She holds a Bachelors of Science from Loyola University Chicago and Juris Doctor from DePaul College of Law
Karina’s tenure at Instituto will begin October 16, 2017. She was selected for the position after a nation-wide executive search for the President and CEO role.