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“What happens in your childhood stays with you,” Hobson said.
“I think this [financial literacy] is one of the most pressing issues we have in America today.” Many parents, Hobson said, aren’t sure how to talk to their children about money.
The mayor is the chair, but the vice chair, appointed by the mayor, traditionally runs the board.
Andrea Zopp will continue as the organization’s CEO, which gets 20 percent of its funding from City Hall.
She sees it as an opportunity to begin a discussion about the role of finance in everyone’s lives—for retirement, for savings, and to prepare for any rainy days.
Hobson advocates for financial literacy courses to be taught to young children and has frequently appeared on to discuss ideas and strategies to help everyday consumers.
And too many people are living in “financial fairy tales” where they expect someone will save them from uninformed decisions.
She’s also promoted education programs for investors.
So some may be surprised that Lightfoot on Thursday announced she was naming Hobson vice chair of World Business Chicago, the public-private agency that works for job growth, particularly from corporate relocations.
But the move was a testament to Hobson’s deep connections in corporate boardrooms.
Hobson will succeed Michael Sacks, who was vice chair for eight years. “Mellody is a phenomenal choice and will be a great partner for Mayor Lightfoot, for Andy Zopp and for the entire team at WBC,” Sacks said.
He’s the chairman of private equity firm GCM Grosvenor, a longtime fundraiser for Emanuel and a major investor in the Sun-Times.
She is now president of Ariel Investments, which manages a nearly $13 billion portfolio and has become a leader in promoting financial literacy.