University of Illinois System

Sylvia Puente

Current Term


Appointed By Governor


Professional Experience

  • President and CEO, Latino Policy Forum (2020-present); executive director (2009-2020)
  • Director, Center for Metropolitan Chicago Initiatives, Institute for Latino Studies, University of Notre Dame (2001-2009)
  • New Communities Director, The Resurrection Project (1999-2001)
  • Latino Institute (1990-1998)

Professional/Civic Affiliations, Activities and Community Service

  • Educational Success Committee, Pritzker transition team
  • Restore, Reinvest, Renew Board
  • State Housing Task Force
  • Illinois Early Learning Council
  • Illinois Education Funding Advisory Board
  • Director, Advance Illinois
  • Illinois Unidos
  • Member, The Chicago Network
  • Member, Economic Club
  • Member, Civic Federation
  • Board member, Center for Tax and Budget Accountability
  • Leadership Greater Chicago Fellow (1997)
  • Lideramos

Awards and Honors

  • Alumni Achievement Award, University of Illinois (2015)
  • Ohtli Award, Mexico
  • Honorary PhD, Roosevelt University
  • Hispanic Business Magazine "100 Most Influential Hispanics in the U.S."
  • Diversity Leadership Alumni Award, University of Chicago
  • Illini Union Board, including Outstanding Achievement Award


  • MA, Public Policy Studies, Harris School of Public Policy, University of Chicago
  • BS, Economics, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (1980)

Party Affiliation




Trustee Puente