Julia Stasch is the Interim President of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Formerly, as Vice President of U.S. Programs, she was responsible for US grantmaking, including community and economic development, housing, the justice system, digital media and learning, and projects on social and economic policy issues.
Prior to joining the Foundation, she worked for the City of Chicago, first as Commissioner of the city's Department of Housing and then as Chief of Staff to Mayor Richard M. Daley. As Commissioner she led a process resulting in the city's commitment to a $1.3 billion five-year plan for affordable housing. As Chief of Staff, one of her significant accomplishments was the design and negotiation of the $1.5 billion plan for transformation of public housing in Chicago.
From 1996 to 1997 she was President and Chief Executive Officer of Shorebank Chicago Companies where she was responsible for Chicago operations of Shorebank, including South Shore Bank, the nation's first community development bank. In 1977 Stasch was one of the first four employees of the Chicago-based real estate development firm Stein & Company. When she left in 1996 as President and Chief Operating Officer, the staff numbered 220 and projects included the Metcalfe Federal Building, Chicago 's United Center, and expansion of McCormick Place. While at Stein and Company she became nationally known for her work to include women and minorities in the construction industry.
During the first Clinton Administration Stasch served as Deputy Administrator of the General Services Administration in Washington, a 20,000-person agency responsible for management of government-wide building construction, leasing, and management. Earlier in her career she was a Vista volunteer and a teacher in the Chicago public school system.
Stasch was the founding President of the Board of the Women's Issues Network, and previously served on the Board of Directors of the Women's Business Development Center. She is a member of the Economic Club and the Chicago Network. She served as the chair of the Mayor’s Advisory Council on Closing the Digital Divide and is a member of the steering committee for the Economic Growth and Jobs Plan. Stasch is a summa cum laude graduate of Loyola University, and has a master's degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago.