Mary Dempsey, 45, commissioner of the Chicago Public Library, has been elected to DePaul University's Board of Trustees by the Members of the Corporation. Dempsey is one of five new board members announced at the boards May 21 meeting.
Dempsey, a 1982 graduate of DePaul's College of Law, has been library commissioner since 1994. Prior to that, she practiced as an attorney with Sidley & Austin's legislative group, where she specialized in government policy issues relating to health care. In 1987 she became Special Counsel for the Chicago Board of Education and represented the coalition of parents, educators and business leaders who crafted school reform legislation. She was an adjunct faculty member with DePaul's College of Law and Health Law Institute from 1986 to 1990.
Dempsey received her masters degree in library science from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana in 1976.
"Marys distinguished leadership at the helm of the library system, her background in education and law, and her status as a DePaul alumnus make her a unique asset to the board," said Edward A. Brennan, chairman of DePaul's Board of Trustees.
Dempsey, a resident of the North Loop who grew up in Hillside, began her career in 1976 as the first professional librarian in the Hillside Public Library System. She worked as a paralegal for Kirkland & Ellis from 1978 to 1982. From 1982 to 1985, she was an associate at Reuben & Procter. Dempsey served as Associate General Counsel for Michael Reese Hospital in 1985, and worked as an attorney in private practice before joining Sidley & Austin
Dempsey is a member of the board of the Big Shoulders Fund, a non-profit group that raises money for Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Chicago. She and her husband, prominent attorney Philip Corboy Sr., received the Big Shoulders Humanitarian Award in 1996. Dempsey also is governor of the Catholic Church Extension Society.
She is a member of the State Street Commission, the Executive Committee of the Greater State Street Council and the Women's Board of Misericordia.
The other four new board members are: John W. Martin Jr., a liberal arts and law graduate of DePaul who is vice president and general counsel at the Ford Motor Co.; Susan S. Moody, executive vice president for corporate banking at First Chicago NBD Corp.; the Rev. Charles F. Shelby, C.M., a DePaul liberal arts graduate and director of the Association of the Miraculous Medal in Perryville, Mo.; and Errol L. Stone, a Chicago attorney.