Shelley Davis, MUPP

Lecturer, Executive Director, Forest Preserve Foundation

Shelley Davis joined the Forest Preserve Foundation as its inaugural executive director in 2013. As a seasoned leader in Chicago’s philanthropic and nonprofit sectors, Shelley has devoted her career to promoting a higher quality of life and equal opportunities for low-income communities.

Shelley’s work has included: counseling domestic violence survivors, advocating for nontraditional, high-wage construction work for women, and evaluating and recommending more than $25 million in grants to nonprofit groups engaged in policy advocacy, community organizing, human services and the arts.

As vice president of programs and advocacy for the Chicago Foundation for Women, Shelley directed six million dollars in grants to organizations that focused on violence against women, access to health care and economic security. Recently, she was an advisor to the Women’s Initiative for Self-Employment, where she raised more than $750,000 and launched a program to help low-income women in Chicago and New York become entrepreneurs.

Currently Shelley is a lecturer at The University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy, where she focuses on the public policy impact of nonprofit and philanthropic organizations. Shelley is also a commissioner of the Illinois Commission on Juvenile Justice and the vice president of the Board of the Albert Pick Jr. Fund.

Shelley is a native of Chicago. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Lawrence University and a Masters of Urban Planning and Policy from University of Illinois at Chicago..