As a result of the distinctive biographies of its founders, The CAFE is in a remarkable position to support and impact the education landscape in the city of Chicago. As the founder and CEO of Cleveland Avenue, a venture capital firm, and the retired CEO of McDonald’s Corporation, Don Thompson has built a social network across 120 countries and has a global reputation for innovation, strategic collaboration, and human capital development. Liz Thompson is a recognized non-profit organizational and board development strategist whose skills are widely sought-after throughout the city. Additionally, Don and Liz’s experiences growing up in and around the Cabrini-Green Housing Development, combined with Liz’s K-12 experience as a student of Chicago Public Schools, provides them with a proximity to the families they are committed to support and to the issues they are dedicated to help resolve.
The CAFE is having impact and making a difference in Chicago, particularly within the leadership of the non-profit community. Their backgrounds, combined with the fact that The CAFE is one of the only African-American founded and led foundations in our city, results in an ability to lead with authenticity and proximity and sets The CAFE apart from others.