Bridget Gainer brings a unique perspective to civic life with over 25 years of experience in the public, private, and non-profit sectors. She is the Vice President of Global Public Affairs for Aon and a Commissioner on the Cook County Board. Her career at Aon has spanned finance and strategy. Most recently, Bridget has led the effort to bring apprenticeships to the financial services sector through the launch of Aon’s Chicago Apprenticeship Program. In January 2017, Aon partnered with Chicago City Colleges to hire 26 young men and women from neighborhoods across the city as apprentices in Aon’s Chicago office, where they receive a competitive salary and on-the-job training.
Bridget was elected to the Cook County Board in 2010 and has brought both finance credentials and a strong commitment to Chicago to lead on several fronts. Bridget’s first act as a County Commissioner was to create the Cook County Pension Committee. As Chairman, Bridget has led the charge to find a pension reform solution that was fair to both taxpayers and the workforce. She also started and Chairs the Cook County Land bank, the region’s most comprehensive response to the foreclosure crisis. The land bank is a social enterprise with 400 homes in development and works with over 100 community based developers.
A native of Chicago, Bridget lives in Chicago with her husband and three children. She is a graduate of the University of Illinois Urbana and has an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. She serves on the board of the Big Shoulders Fund and the Archdiocese of Chicago school board. Most recently, and with the support of United States Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Bridget launched a Chicago chapter of Off the Sidelines here in Chicago to encourage more women to ‘take their ideas to action.’ She has quickly grown the organization to 2,500 members.