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University of Chicago Booth School of Business

Passionate About the
Transformative Power
of Higher Education

Jeff Bethke,
Managing Partner

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Jeff has more than 30 years of line management, executive leadership and consulting experience, including 18 years at DePaul University in Chicago, where he served, at various points, as Budget Director, Associate Treasure, Treasurer, Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President.


While at DePaul, he orchestrated the formation of a $165m public private partnership to construct a 10,000-seat multi-purpose arena, he directed the $200m monetization of a multi-use residential housing facility, he oversaw the growth of the university’s endowment from $200m to $1b, and he oversaw the institution’s $580m annual operating budget. Prior to DePaul he worked in corporate procurement, municipal government and consulting.


He is the current Board Chair of the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority, the operator of the largest convention center in North America and is the Board Finance Chair of Niagara University in Lewiston, NY and DePaul College Prep in Chicago. He is the former President of the Educational Advancement Fund, the former Vice Chair of the Civic Federation of Chicago and, in 2019, he served as Finance Lead on the Chicago mayoral transition team. In 2018, the Chicago chapter of Financial Executives International named him “CFO of the Year” in the large, not-for-profit category and, in 2019, the 15,000-member FEI national organization named him “Financial Executive of the Year” in the national non-profit category.


He is a first-generation college graduate with dual degrees in journalism and ancient civilizations from the University of Missouri at Kansas City and an MBA in finance and marketing from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. 

Affiliations and Experience

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DePaul University, Executive Vice President

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Niagara University, Board Finance Chair

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Navy Pier, Inc, Board Member (ex officio)

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Educational Advancement Fund, President

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Better Together Chicago, Finance Lead

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Financial Executives International, National Organization “Financial Executive of the Year”

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Chicago Public Library, Director of Acquisitions

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Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority, Board Chair

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DePaul College Prep, Board Finance Chair

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Choose Chicago, Board Member (ex officio)

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The Civic Federation
of Chicago, Vice Chair

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Financial Executives International, Chicago Chapter “CFO of the Year”

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Jeslen Corporation, Management Consultant

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Borders Group, Inc, Procurement Manager

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