Thinkinc. is a creative Chicago-based public affairs and political consulting firm that delivers strategic planning and positioning, messaging, branding, issue framing, and educational campaigns with the power to take your organization to the next level.
Thinkinc.’s strategic approach and deep relationships kept media attention on an impactful story, yielding big viewership and nearly $250,000 in publicity value for our partners. Read more ›
At Thinkinc. we tailor our methodology per project, based on the specific needs of our clients. Over the years, the firm has developed a proven capacity to meet the wide-ranging positioning needs of our clients. Read more »
Founder, president, and CEO Laurie R. Glenn has more than 25 years of experience delivering powerful, effective strategies. Full bio ›
Laurie secured high-profile coverage in Wired for the Shared User Mobility Center’s report on how ride-sharing companies such as Lyft and Uber affect public transit use.
Quotes from the SUMC’s executive director reached an engaged audience of 30 million monthly viewers, including thought leaders and policy shapers.
I wanted to write to say thank you again for your guidance last year. You gave me the courage to focus a bit more on Life Engineer and working towards being financially sustainable and I feel like I’m now on a better track. Thank you!
You had an impact on all of the 2016 Chicago YLAI Fellows (Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative) and we all really appreciated your insights and learning from your experience.– Gregory Skeete, Founder, Life Engineer (life.engineer) and The Pilly Pelican Company (pilly.co) and a YLAI 2016 Alumnus
Dear Laurie, it was such a pleasure meeting you.
As promised, I wrote a poetic text dedicated to our leadership and art workshop following the exercise from yesterday. I would love to stay connected and thank you again!
Warm Regards, Nadja El Fertasi
We lead from the mind when the heart is the true guide.
We lead from the outside when our lifeline is inside.
We lead by accident instead of intent.
We lead from a place of fear instead of trust.
We lead from a place of judgment instead of compassion.
We lead from a place of control instead of faith.
True power comes when art and leadership blend as one.
True power comes when the self-exists with the ego in the background.
True power comes when others follow your path to greatness.
True power comes when others believe in the magic within themselves.
Some people walk in the room, and their soul speaks through their entire being.
Some people speak from the heart, and you connect without words.
Some people shine their energy onto you, so you too can transform mountains into beacons of hope, light, and peace.
Thank you Laurie for your presence, insights, and wisdom from the heart.
Thank you for teaching us leadership from the heart in fusion with art.
Thank you so much for meeting with the French delegation on October 31st! The delegates appreciated the discussion they had with you and they enjoyed your personality and passion for what you do!
Your hospitality and the valuable discussion made this a unique experience for them. They genuinely valued the time they got to spend with you.
I hope that there will be more opportunities for us to work together in the future, and I again want to thank you for your time. Support from professionals like yourself is what makes the work of WorldChicago possible. Your meeting no doubt enhanced the delegates’ trip to Chicago.
Just to let you know that yesterday was awesome. I truly appreciated your presentation. – Romaric N’DRI
I am Fernando Romero from Peru. You coached our team from the YLAI Professional Fellows program while we were in Chicago on October 2017.
Every bit of advice I received from you is part of my daily mantra of what to do with my organization and most important with myself.
All my best,
Biomechanics and Applied Robotics Laboratory
“My job in every room I’ve ever been in has been to identify what I had in common with another person, how could I connect with them on some level. And that is what we need to begin to build again is this spirit in the United States that, ‘We are the United States, not the divided States.’”
Hear more of my talk with Mark Sims on “Just a Few Questions.”
In 2019, Chicago homicides declined 13%, the third straight yearly drop in murders.
Other big cities have noticed. The Philadelphia Inquirer asked around Chicago and found one important reason for the turnaround: Community-based antiviolence work funded by the Partnership for Safe and Peaceful Communities. PSPC, a Thinkinc. client since spring 2019, is a coalition of more than 40 Chicago foundations and funders that have invested nearly $75 million in identifying and supporting neighborhood-level violence-reduction programs.
Read how PSPC-funded initiatives, such as Communities Partnering for Peace, are having such an impact: Important lessons for Philadelphia from Chicago’s three-year decline in gun violence
In 2016, a coalition of foundations and funders — including the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Field Foundation, the Joyce Foundation and more than 40 others — united to address violence in Chicago. The Partnership for Safe and Peaceful Communities (PSPC) was formed.
In 2019, PSPC hired Thinkinc. to enhance the coalition’s public profile, beginning with the announcement of rapid-response grants to community-based groups providing anti-violence programming and services during the summer and fall. Thinkinc.’s news releases attracted wide news coverage, and its social media campaign spread the word, immediately increasing the number and quality of applicants, according to PSPC. The coalition is looking forward to results from the dynamic and innovative strategic approach that Thinkinc. is implementing over the coming several months.
When Thinkinc. conceptualized, named and helped design the architecture competition Disruptive Design: Reimagining Chicago in 2017 with the Chicago Housing Policy Task Force, we couldn’t wait to see what kinds of affordable homes entrants would come submit.
We’re proud that Disruptive Design isn’t just about replenishing Chicago’s desperately needed stock of affordable housing. This competition is about envisioning innovations in live-work capabilities, construction materials and methods, accessibility, and opportunity for aging in place. Read more »
Below is a lovely Facebook post from Andrei Zavalei, one of the young leaders from Belarus who attended my recent WorldChicago workshop on sharing power. I am deeply touched. Thank you, Andrei.
I want this world to be governed by women like Laurie Glenn.
I want women to have power, I want them to have real influence. I am sure, that this kind of world would be more inclusive, more transparent and less corrupted. This world will be definitely much more safer, prosperous and comfortable place for everyone, than it is now.
In August 2018, I (sixth from the left) joined other Chicago professionals including Windy City Times Publisher Tracy Baim (fourth from right) in working with a wonderful group of young leaders from Belarus through WorldChicago.
For over two weeks we are meeting with very talented people in various sectors on communications, fundraising, volunteerism, advocacy, research and organizing. Most importantly we are sharing with them lessons around building power. Learn more »
Laurie Glenn on French television.
Caleb Reed, 17, believed in love and believed that America’s destiny is to end violence. That’s why, as an emerging leader in Voices of Youth in Chicago Education (VOYCE) and Communities United, he fought to address untreated trauma among young people of color and to increase investment in communities of color. Tragically, Caleb’s life was cut short before he could lead his nation to realize its destiny.
Communities United and VOYCE turned to Thinkinc. for help in developing a media platform that honors Caleb’s life and highlights both his work and VOYCE’s continuing efforts. Thinkinc. developed messaging that framed Caleb’s legacy and shielded it from those who might use it for their own benefit. We shared that message with an array of local, national and international journalists. The VOYCE news conference that Thinkinc. organized with their staff and leaders drew news media coverage from throughout the United States.
The coverage was a testament to the impact Caleb Reed had in his short, powerful life. Below is a sample:
Heartbreak After 17-Year-Old Activist Caleb Reed Is Found Shot Dead — CBS-2, WBBM-TV
To maximize the impact of our client’s push to remove police from schools on Chicago’s South and West Sides, Thinkinc. recommended a strategic joint press conference with Ald. Roderick Sawyer and other allies of our client.
Thinkinc. developed strategic messaging, pitched reporters and alerted the media to the urgency of the moment, as Ald. Sawyer prepared to put forth a measure before the City Council.
In 12 hours, Thinkinc.’s deep and broad relationship with Chicago and regional media produced a well-attended news conference and several big media hits.
Thinkinc. worked closely with the Field and MacArthur Foundations to launch a national announcement of the 2020 Leaders for a New Chicago.
The Field Foundation again chose Thinkinc. to spread the word about this innovative unrestricted award that helps Chicago visionaries broaden their networks while helping the city develop leadership that is more equitable.
Chicago Citizen: Grant program pivots in midst of Covid-19
For most of my adult life cancer has been my stalking-horse.
It felt like I wouldn’t live very long so I tried to live large, before the big C takes me out. Sure enough, my time came at 39, when a doctor called me at the end of a long week in February to say I had joined the ranks of millions of women who had breast cancer.
My absolute worst nightmare just happened, so what’s next? Read More»
During the COVID-19 crisis, we hear a lot from adults — government officials, experts and worried parents. In April 2020, Thinkinc. helped Communities United raise the voices of Chicago youth leaders who are calling for increased access to mental health services during this challenging time.
Thinkinc.’s media advisory and calls to reporters brought a significant turnout of journalists to a Communities United virtual town hall, which led to wide broadcast and print coverage of this important message. Highlights include:
Thinkinc. secured premium placement for client PSPC, whose Chicago Fund grantees included Project H.E.L.M. (Harbor Education Life-Safety Mindset). Project H.E.L.M. teaches youths boating skills and life skills to help them navigate life on water and on land. Read the Thinkinc. news release that helped garner this coverage »
Thinkinc. reached community media to spread the word of the Field Foundation’s innovative Leaders for a New Chicago grants. The Field Foundation, with support from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation supports leaders of color who are often left out of the philanthropic process.
“Stop turning your back on Middle America.” That’s my message to the Democrats during my enjoyable time on “The Ben Joravsky Show.” Hear about that and what I’ve been up to lately. Watch the interview »
Thinkinc. worked with the Chicago Independent Venue League (CIVL) to create a formidable force that took on a City of Chicago-backed project to use public funds to build a billion-dollar megadevelopment that threatened the city’s independent music scene. Indy venue owners formed CIVL and called Thinkinc.
Within a week, Thinkinc. generated widespread media coverage and fervent community support that would have a big impact. Read more »
The Field Foundation has hired Thinkinc. to announce the launching of two new programs, supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, to help make Chicago more racially equitable.
The Leaders for a New Chicago Awards and the Media & Storytelling Program will award $5 million in grants for areas, organizations and individuals often left out of philanthropic giving.
Jesus “Chuy” Garcia, a charismatic, down-to-earth Chicago community organizer and officeholder chose Thinkinc. to handle his announcement for congressional election and his October 2018 decision to decline a run for Chicago mayor. Garcia relied on Thinkinc.’s longstanding ties with Chicago and national media as well as influential community leaders.
Thinkinc. has the power to get your message heard. Explore the highlights of our recent media wins with influential TV and radio news programs, newspapers and blogs across the nation. Read more ›