Advocacy & Economic Development Specialist - Chicago, IL

ICNC works to strengthen the companies in the Kinzie Industrial Corridor on Chicago's Near West Side. In addition to representing and providing assistance to hundreds of companies in its community, ICNC owns and operates Make City, a small business incubator which houses 100 small business tenants in its 416,000 square foot facility.

ICNC also co-owns The Hatchery, a food and beverage manufacturing incubator in Chicago’s East Garfield Park neighborhood which assists food & beverage entrepreneurs grow their businesses. This facility is a one-stop-shop aiming to solve three major challenges in the industry: access to production space, financing, and resources.

Please visit http://www.industrialcouncil.com and http://www.thehatcherychicago.org for information on ICNC's mission and activities.

The Advocacy & Economic Development Specialist locates, curates, and disseminates economic development and market information to assist ICNC to understand modern urban industrial firms and Chicago’s West Side. This position reports to the Marketing Communications Manager.



  • Lead economic development initiatives
  • Research, identify, and share relevant policies including Planned Manufacturing Districts, Tax Increment Financing, Industrial Corridors, etc. and track and report on policy changes relevant to organizational priorities
  • Develop strategies to comply with policy changes and share with the entrepreneurial community
  • Establish and maintain strong relationships with policy makers and stakeholders
  • Work closely with incubation graduates and members to navigate licensing and permitting, incentive programs and applications, and general interactions with city departments
  • Conduct research and analysis to identify new market opportunities
  • Communicate market analysis reports to organization for maximum campaign success rates
  • Identify opportunities for neighborhood development
  • Explore other organizations and influencers to partner with and develop communications
  • Work closely with programming team to develop training around new policy implementation
  • Support organization-wide events
  • Oversee city industrial retention contract and executes its objectives, including marketing TIF programs and other support services to local businesses
  • Complete and report on contract requirements each fiscal year
  • Maintain record of local industrial real estate listings and market them to relocating or expanding businesses
  • Identify opportunities for incubator development, including expansion, improvements, and funding
  • Participates in the West Side Outreach Team, creating and implementing outreach strategies
  • Maintains calendar of outreach activities, including community events, workshops, appearances, and other communication opportunities


  • Guide ICNC policy positions to best organize them around constituency and advocate for public policy that advances them
  • Regularly review policies and procedures of ICNC brands to best advocate for the community
  • Monitor development and policy issues that impact the neighborhood
  • Assess zoning changes, neighborhood plans, transit initiatives, and other proposals
  • Develop a response plan for the organization
  • Conduct regular interviews and surveys to collect data and enhance advocacy efforts


  • Bachelor’s degree in related field (urban planning, economic or business development);
  • Experience in such areas as community organizing, manufacturing, public policy and land use;
  • Comfortable interacting with city government and public speaking;
  • High energy, outgoing, and a passion for ICNC’s mission is essential;
  • Strong communication, research, and marketing skills mandatory;
  • Active listener who can relate well with all types of people, builds rapport, constructive and effective relationships;
  • Able to maintain strong, positive, collaborative working relationships;
  • Willing to travel and use personal vehicle as necessary for work-related activities –mileage expenses are reimbursable;
  • Excellent time management and strong organizational skills;
  • Able to work in a fast-paced environment to meet established goals and deadlines;
  • Skilled coordinating a variety of projects simultaneously;
  • Willingness to work flexible, varying hours, including evenings and weekends as needed;
  • Experience with public data outlets (US Census, Legistar, Chicago Data Portal, etc), design software, and mapping software (GIS, Google Earth) a plus


  • ICNC: office environment, but much time to be spent in face-to-face/virtual meetings, involving substantial local travel;


  • This is a full-time position; Monday-Friday, work schedule can vary; with the ability to work remote 40% of work week
  • Starting annual salary range is $51K-60K; commensurate with experience;
  • Benefit incentives include: One week paid vacation to start and one week personal/sick time off, participation in group health insurance plan, SIMPLE IRA, short and long term disability and life insurance; training and career development opportunities available
  • This position is eligible to participate in ICNC’s Great Game of Business growth incentive bonus plan

Please email letter of interest, current resume, and three professional references to:

Advocacy and Economic Development Specialist
The subject line must include the recruiting code  AED

ICNC is committed to fostering a diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment for its team, the businesses it supports, and ultimately the communities in which it works.

Scroll to Top