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THIS JUST IN: Doug Whitley announces retirement

Thursday, Sep 5, 2013

Posted by Barton Lorimor (@bartonlorimor)

From a press release…

In the coming months, the Illinois Chamber of Commerce will embark upon a change in leadership. Doug Whitley, our talented and energetic President and CEO, has informed the Chamber Board of Directors that he plans to retire next June. We thank Doug for the long advance notice, which will allow the Board to work with him through a well-planned transition period that will launch the Chamber’s next chapter of strong advocacy for Illinois employers.

Doug has served the Illinois Chamber since September 2001, guiding the organization through one of the most turbulent periods for business in the Chamber’s more than 90-year history, meanwhile restoring the leadership status of the Illinois Chamber as the unifying statewide voice of business in Illinois.
Looking ahead, the timing of Doug’s retirement offers the Illinois Chamber an opportunity to establish new leadership and set its agenda prior to the 2014 gubernatorial election. Additionally, my term as board chairman ends next June, which means the incoming Illinois Chamber Board Chair and the new CEO will be able to begin their terms together.

- Posted by Barton Lorimor        

  1. - Downstate - Thursday, Sep 5, 13 @ 3:08 pm:

    Great guy. A wonderful representative for the Chamber. Just wish the leaders in Springfield would have listened to him.

  2. - Rahm'sMiddleFinger - Thursday, Sep 5, 13 @ 3:17 pm:

    Doug is a class act. I wish him well.

    I hope that his replacement will serve as a cheerleader for Illinois businesses.

  3. - Downstater - Thursday, Sep 5, 13 @ 3:43 pm:

    Best wishes to Doug. He would have made a great Governor for Illinois.

  4. - Mongo - Thursday, Sep 5, 13 @ 4:15 pm:

    I gotta admit I have not worked with him for more than a decade, but ages ago, when he was at the Taxpayer’s Federation, he surprised everyone by supporting a measure regarding local services for people with disabilities. In fact he suggested we were not asking for enough support. I know a lot of things have changed since then, but his willingness to step out of his comfort zone, and perhaps even more important, accept an argument that was contrary to the mantra of cut taxes, then cut taxes, and then cut taxes again, was unheard of.

    Best wishes to Mr. Whitley.

  5. - NW Illinois Dem - Thursday, Sep 5, 13 @ 4:25 pm:

    Is Doug Whitley stepping down to run for Lite Guv?

  6. - Snucka - Thursday, Sep 5, 13 @ 4:32 pm:

    Can’t imagine who he would help as an LG candidate. There are plenty of white males from Chicagoland already running for Gov. Plus he won’t retire until next June.

  7. - 1776 - Thursday, Sep 5, 13 @ 5:10 pm:

    Good riddance. His hypocrisy was overwhelming. I watched him slam Rep. Will Davis last year for a proposal that included higher taxes at the same time he’s pushing for a billion dollar gas tax hike.

  8. - Juvenal - Thursday, Sep 5, 13 @ 5:33 pm:

    I credit Doug for being one of the first, and certainly the most prominent, leaders from the business community to recognize that constant rhetorical attacks on Illinois as a place to do business were contrary to the long term interests of Illinois business and particularly his members.

    Like stock speculators, lobbyists and consultants may benefit hugely from hyperbolic tactics…might even help you pass this bill or that for some short term gains, but over the long haul it only helps convince businesses currently located here or considering Illinois to choose another state.

    And since 80 percent of US commerce is actually business to business, not business to consumer, all these business groups have accomplished over the past decade is sending potential customers somewhere else.


    Hopefully whomever follows Doug and takes the helm of the board will have as much sense.

  9. - one of the 35 - Thursday, Sep 5, 13 @ 8:52 pm:

    Doug’s departure coupled with the previous retirement of Michael Ayers leaves a big vacuum in state Chamber leadership. Both were quality individuals.

  10. - one of the 35 - Thursday, Sep 5, 13 @ 8:54 pm:

    Make that, “both ARE quality individuals”.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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