Executive Director
Patricia Ford is a long-time advocate for quality education on behalf of children in urban school systems.  Pat is a Chicago native with more than 25 years of experience in the field of education, organizing and community development. Through her long-time work in the non-profit sector, she has developed a deep understanding of issues facing traditionally under-resourced communities, and has an extensive network of relationships with a wide range of school reform and community organizations, funders, educators and policy makers.  Prior to joining the SFF, Pat was Executive Director of the Chicago High School Redesign Initiative, a donor-advised fund at the Chicago Community Trust.

Pat also served as Program Director of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge and was Co-Director of the Small Schools Workshop.  Her early career includes leadership positions at community-based youth organizations in North Lawndale and Cabrini Green.  She currently serves on the board of PCC Community Wellness Center and the Network for Young Adult Success/UtmostU.

Pat received a M.Ed. in Instructional Leadership from Loyola University in Chicago and a B.A. in Elementary Education from Bradley University in Peoria, IL.

Pat is an avid collector of vintage coats to brave Chicago’s long winters, loves live music, and visiting Black history museums.  Pat is a proud member of a large family and serves as Auntie-Mom to several of her nieces and nephews.