Kurt Summers

Title: Treasurer

Firm: City of Chicago

Age: 38

Kurt Summers, a lifelong Chicagoan who grew up in the South Side’s Bronzeville neighborhood, was tapped for the elected post managing the city’s $7 billion investment portfolio in 2014 and then won election to a four-year term in 2015.

Kurt brought with him a mix of public and private sector experience, having worked at several consulting and financial services firms and serving as Cook County board president Toni Preckwinkle’s chief of staff.

As treasurer, he sits on the city’s four pension boards with $25 billion of fund under management, and Mayor Emanuel tapped him to head the Chicago Infrastructure Trust. In office, Kurt launched the “Invest in our City” program requiring municipal depositories to commit to community reinvestment. He spearheaded creation of the Chicago Community Catalyst Fund, a new economic development tool which is expected to launch this year with a city funding commitment, and he implemented a quarterly earning call designed to share the performance of Chicago’s investment portfolio with the general public.

Kurt is a member of the Loyola University Council of Regents and National Council for Gephardt Institute for Civic and Community Engagement at Washington University, and he sits on the boards of the Chicago Humanities Festival and Illinois Justice Project Advisory Board.

His interest in politics goes back to his grandfather, Sam Patch, who served as a close confidant to Chicago’s first African American mayor, Harold Washington. He used to tell Kurt “don’t fix the blame, fix the problem” when they’d talk of the economic disparities between downtown and impoverished neighborhoods.

Kurt’s investment acumen dates back to the age of 18 with his first investment in 3M.


“Kurt is not only the banker and investor for the city of Chicago, he's an economic champion for the residents he serves.” Jacki Robinson-Ivy, NASP Chicago Chapter President and senior vice president, public affairs/government relations at Northern Trust.

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