OUR TEAM

The Conlon Public Strategies team consists of entrepreneurial business and nonprofit experts with well-established executive track records for effective leadership across multiple sectors.

KEVIN CONLON
Founder and President

Kevin Conlon founded Conlon Public Strategies in 1998, after practicing labor and employment law for 15 years. As president of the firm, he offers clients a unique understanding of the public arena derived from over 30 years of experience in law, government, venture capital, and non-profit organizations. Kevin’s background and relationships give him an exceptional ability to assist clients at all levels of government and in the business, civic, and nonprofit communities.

Kevin has played leadership roles in numerous political campaigns at the national, state, and local levels. These include serving as Illinois State Co-Chair for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s 2008 and 2016 presidential campaigns. During President Obama’s 2012 presidential campaign, Kevin was national co-chair of the Obama Leadership Circle and a member of the national and Illinois finance committees (one of top 100 fundraisers nationally). In 2004, he served as Illinois state chair and vice chair of the national finance committee for Governor Howard Dean’s presidential campaign. Kevin’s campaign work led the Illinois Democratic County Chairmen’s Association to select him as the recipient of its first annual Party Builder Award in 2017. Kevin has also served in elected office and appointed positions in federal, state, and local government.

Kevin has been active in the community throughout his career. He is past president of the Irish Fellowship Club of Chicago; a standing member of the Economic Club of Chicago; chair of the Illinois Democratic County Chairmen’s Association Leadership Circle; a member of the board of directors for Equip for Equality, National Public Housing Museum, and the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation; and a member of the advisory committee for the Illinois Connection/University of Illinois Alumni Association. He has taught classes at the University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy Studies, Chicago-Kent School of Law (Illinois Institute of Technology), and DePaul University.

Kevin holds a bachelor’s degree from Illinois State University, a master’s degree from the University of Illinois, and a J.D. from the Loyola University of Chicago School of Law.

JAMES B. FADIM
Executive Vice President and General Counsel

Before joining Conlon Public Strategies in 2003, Jamey practiced commercial real estate as a partner in various prominent law firms in Chicago.

Jamey is known throughout Chicago for his extensive support of the performing arts. He assists Conlon Public Strategies’ nonprofit clients to achieve their goals through his in-depth work with them on board development, capacity building, strategic planning, and fundraising strategy.

Jamey is a Life Trustee of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association and has served on its President Search Committee and its Music Director Search Committee. He is currently an active member of the Symphony’s Marketing, Artistic Development, and Board Development Committees. He is the past secretary and a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees of the Joan W. and Irving B. Harris Theater for Music and Dance in Millennium Park and currently serves on its Marketing and Resident Company Partnership Committees. He is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the Grant Park Orchestral Association and a past member of the board of directors of the Center for Performing Arts at Governor’s State University in University Park, Illinois.

Jamey attended Francis W. Parker School and received his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Michigan.

Carl F. Hughes
Senior Advisor

Prior to joining Conlon Public Strategies in 2020, Carl served as the chairman, president, and chief executive officer of an Ohio based bank for 30+ years. Under his leadership, the bank tripled the size of its asset base with a capital ratio that placed it in the top 4% nationally and top 1% for its peer group.

Carl’s extensive domestic and international network allows him to serve in a variety of professional capacities, including as an ambassador for John Carroll University, where he fosters fellowship programs and facilitates institutional growth. He co-developed and co-funds an internship program for John Carroll University with the United Nations World Food Programme and Jesuit Refugee Service.

In addition to his work for clients, Carl is a member of the Board of Trustees of St. Edward High School, which is sponsored by the Brothers of Holy Cross; Marion Catholic School’s Endowment Fund; the Father Frederick Furey Endowment Fund, and Rotary International.

Carl has served in numerous leadership roles for political campaigns at the national, state, and local levels. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from John Carroll University.

Jeff Lande
Senior Advisor

A Washington DC veteran, Jeff offers Conlon Public Strategies clients his extensive experience in government relations, public affairs, coalition building, research, geopolitical and market analysis, business facilitation, and strategic planning services. He has particular expertise in assessing and helping to shape the potential impact of public policies and politics on corporate and nonprofit organizations.

Among the issues and sectors that Jeff has worked on during the past two decades are IT services and BPO, technology, immigration, globalization and trade, US-India relations, tax, innovation, education and workforce, economic development, health care and social services, and veterans affairs. He played a prominent role in the formation of both the US-India High Technology Cooperation Group and US-India Information and Communication Technology Working Group. He also organized and spearheaded the U.S. Technology Partnership, which was a cooperative effort sector between the US Department of Commerce, US Office of Thrift Supervision, and the technology industry to increase opportunities for and engagement by minorities with the technology sector. Further, Jeff played a leading role in technology and policy consortiums spanning nearly 40 states and 72 countries.

Jeff is founder and president of the Lande Group, LLC, a Washington DC government affairs firm that collaborates with Conlon Public Strategies to provide clients of both firms with an exceptional array of services and expertise. Prior to launching the Lande Group in 2010, Jeff served as executive vice president of TechAmerica and senior vice president of the Information Technology Association of America. During the 1990’s, Jeff served as the national legislative director and Washington office associate director of United Jewish Communities and the Council of Jewish Federations. He has also held legislative and committee staff positions in the US House of Representatives; lectured and served as a researcher at the University of Virginia; owned several small businesses; and served on the boards of directors for several privately-held businesses and nonprofits. Jeff holds master’s and bachelor’s degrees in psychology from the University of Virginia and University of Wisconsin-Madison, respectively.

Barbara A. Lumpkin
Executive Vice President

In 2020, Barbara A. Lumpkin joined Conlon Public Strategies, where she charts, develops, and leads sustainable growth for clients. Before becoming a part of the Conlon Public Strategies team, Barbara served as the interim president and CEO for the Chicago Urban League. Under her leadership, the organization generated more than $5 million in support for the organization’s programs and services. Prior to her time with the Chicago Urban League, Barbara served as the deputy CEO and executive director for external partnerships at Chicago Public Schools, securing more than $100 million in support for schools and students.

A former financial services executive, Barbara made history as the first woman appointed comptroller for the City of Chicago and the first African-American woman to serve as city treasurer. She has earned national recognition for her leadership in this and other finance and leadership roles for the City of Chicago, including budget director, special assistant to the mayor, city treasurer, and chief procurement officer.

Barbara has also served on numerous civic and charitable boards, from the Chicago Horticultural Society to the Leadership Council of the United Negro College Fund (UNCF), Chicago Chapter. She helped found the Chicago Children’s Advocacy Center Advisory Board; was lead collaborator on the establishment of World Business Chicago; and has served in leading roles for initiatives including the Chicago-Gary Regional Airport Pact, renovation of Soldier Field, and renaming White Sox Park.

Barbara has been featured in several articles highlighting her various accomplishments and received awards including the Illinois Black History Month Award, PUSH Excel Civil Rights Advocacy Award, and the UNCF’s prestigious Frederick D. Patterson Award. A Mississippi native, Barbara attended Coahoma Community College and studied business administration at DePaul University.

Emily Liao Master
Senior Advisor

Emily Liao Master brings to the Conlon Public Strategies team nearly 20 years’ experience in executive management, marketing, communications, operations, revenue growth, and strategic and program planning for nonprofit, for-profit and governmental organizations. For many years, her professional home was the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association where, in addition to roles in the marketing, artistic planning and audience development departments, Emily ran the office of Music Director Riccardo Muti. She subsequently served as Chief of Staff for the U.S. head of a global executive search and leadership advisory firm. Since 2018, Emily also serves as the executive director of the Friends of the Israel Antiquities Authority, a connector of people and projects in Israel.
Emily helps clients forge and sustain avenues of mission-awareness and support and ensures that organizations offer meaningful engagement opportunities that contribute to the growth and long-term health of significant projects. Emily’s strategic planning and implementation projects have spanned industries and goals but have always been characterized by inspired, big-picture thinking. Her record in revenue enhancement and fundraising includes distinguished achievements. She continues to lend her expertise in the area of strategic advising and furthering diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives for artists and performing arts organizations.

Following pre-professional studies at the Juilliard School, Emily received her AB cum laude from Princeton University and her MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. She also completed executive education at the Guanghua School of Management (China), IPADE (Mexico), Kellogg School of Management specifically in nonprofit management, and the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy and Practice in arts and culture strategy. Her current community leadership roles include co-chairing the Princeton Alumni Schools Committee for the Chicago Western Suburbs. She is also an active Business Volunteer for the Arts with the Arts and Business Council of Chicago.

Monica Metzler
Senior Advisor

Monica Metzler has been a part of the Conlon Public Strategies team since 2002, including serving as vice president from 2006 to 2012. With a focus on nonprofit strategic planning and management, Monica helps organizations navigate the political landscape and achieve their goals in the public arena using expertise gained from an accomplished 20-year career in the legal, political, and nonprofit sectors.

Since 2012 Monica has worked as a Strategic Advisor to select Conlon Public Strategies clients while also serving as the executive director of the Illinois Science Council (“ISC”), a nonprofit she founded. The ISC’s mission to increase public awareness, understanding, and appreciation of science and to promote Chicago as the nation’s leading city of science research and outreach. In 2016, Monica was named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Monica has extensive marketing and communication experience in connecting with the media, policymakers, and public audiences. She is a keynote speaker, as well as a coach, PowerPoint editor, and advisor to researchers and science institutions interested in advancing science communication.

Monica earned her Juris Doctor from Duke University School of Law, along with a Master of Arts from the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke, and a Bachelor of Science in Education and Social Policy from Northwestern University.

Ami Novoryta
Senior Advisor

Ami joined Conlon Public Strategies in September 2020 after nearly two decades in the nonprofit and public sectors. She offers clients expertise in planning for strategic growth and transformation, leading program innovation and systems change, and developing and sustaining impactful partnerships and collaborations.

Ami has held leadership roles in strategy, innovation, development, and communications. Her experience spans nonprofits ranging from an agile, entrepreneurial start-up to a growth-oriented community-based institution to one of Chicago’s largest and oldest social service agencies. Ami brings a track record of leading social justice, human services, and education nonprofits to translate mission and values into action and results.

Previously, Ami served as chief strategy officer for Heartland Alliance, where she developed and advanced a bold enterprise-wide strategic vision and launched a social innovation practice. She led strategy and impact at Boston-based National Center on Time & Learning at a pivotal moment in the organization’s trajectory, and she led development and communications at Chicago’s Erie Neighborhood House, where she surpassed ambitious fundraising goals and collaborated with program leads and partners to conceptualize and launch new impact areas and a new elementary charter school. She has also served in a policy role at the Metropolitan Planning Council and taught fifth grade students in Boston Public Schools.

Ami is a Leadership Greater Chicago Fellow and a founding member of Chief Chicago, a private network built to drive more women into positions of power and keep them there. She earned her master’s in public policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, where she was a Pforzheimer Nonprofit Fellow. Ami has a master’s in education from the University of Massachusetts-Boston, a bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a nonprofit leadership certification from Loyola University Chicago.

LINDA DIAMOND SHAPIRO
Executive Vice President

In May 2017, Linda joined Conlon Public Strategies to advise clients on planning for strategic growth, financial sustainability, partnership development, and external affairs.

A health and human services leader in the Chicago area, Linda has previously assumed key external affairs, government relations, and strategic planning positions with leading nonprofit organizations.  Linda served in various roles at Planned Parenthood of Illinois as a board member, senior staff advisor, and interim CEO for over a year.  Formerly, she held the position of chief strategy officer at Cook County Health and Hospitals Systems, developing and implementing the growth strategy for the County’s start-up Medicaid managed care organization.

For the better part of two decades, she championed the growth of Access Community Health Network from a small network of unprofitable health centers into a viable enterprise with over 40 health center locations.  She has also held policy development and advocacy positions at the American Medical Association and served in the president’s office at University of Chicago Medicine and as executive director of the Health and Medicine Policy Research Group.

Locally, Linda chairs the board of the Hyde Park Youth Symphony.  Linda serves as a field liaison for the University of Chicago’s School of Social Service Administration and as a mentor for the University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy.  Linda is a graduate of the University of Chicago where she obtained her bachelor’s degree as well as master’s degrees from the School of Social Service Administration and the Booth Graduate School of Business.

Catherine Voigt
Senior Advisor

After more than 10 years in the public sector, Catherine Voigt joined Conlon Public Strategies in 2006. Catherine uses the advocacy, writing, and research skills developed throughout her career to help Conlon Public Strategies clients develop the powerful messages, materials, and strategies needed to achieve their goals in the public arena.

Catherine began her career working in the Illinois appellate and supreme courts as a law clerk and practiced labor and employment law and school law before focusing on criminal appeals with the Illinois State’s Attorneys Appellate Prosecutor. As a member of the Conlon Public Strategies team, Catherine specializes in strategic communications and nonprofit consulting. From the development of fact sheets for legislators to the preparation of press releases, Catherine helps clients educate key stakeholders and generate support for their initiatives. She also offers Conlon Public Strategies clients a range of grant writing and consulting services, including researching public and private funding opportunities; designing program objectives, logic models, and budgets; developing grant proposals; and managing relationships with funders.

Catherine earned a law degree from the Loyola University of Chicago School of Law and an undergraduate degree with Highest University Honors (Bronze Tablet) from the University of Illinois. She serves on the boards of directors for the Glen Ellyn Children’s Resource Center and West Suburban Philanthropic Network.