Class Notes Profiles
Chicago’s League leader
Guy Maras, Arts ’87, calls it a coincidence. It’s a funny one.
He is co-managing partner of Hennessey and Roach law firm, with offices on the seventh floor of Chicago’s landmark Marquette Building.
Maras moves between that building — that is coincidentally named for alumni’s favorite explorer — to another pillar of city history as president of the Union League Club of Chicago. He was named 124th president last summer and used his first official address to ask members of the club, founded in 1879 to “uphold the sacred obligations of citizenship,” whether it is still relevant.
The question was rhetorical. Maras really hasn’t any doubt. “Chicago continues to change,” he says, “and the Union League Club is an institution that impacts the development of our community.”
The club’s 3,800 members do get involved. The public affairs committee — Maras’ personal passion — advances public policy discourse. The committee currently is pressing for greater transparency in government to prevent a recurrence of the recent flap to privatize Chicago’s parking meters. The club owns four Boys & Girls Clubs serving 11,600 kids. “Our kids have a 97 percent graduation rate,” Maras boasts. The club’s two major philanthropic works, the Engineers’ Foundation and the Luminarts Cultural Foundation, support scholarships for aspiring engineers and artists. And there is much more.
Maras says he has been involved with two great institutions — Marquette and the Union League Club. He tries to live up to encouragement Rev. John Schlegel, S.J., offered when presenting his diploma. Maras recalls, “Father said: ‘This is a Jesuit degree. Go do something good with it.’” — Joni Moths Mueller