Why We Can't Wait

Wednesday, May 26th, 2021 at 7:00 PM CT | Virtual Reception begins at 6:30 PM CT

This year’s virtual event is hosted by Journalist and NBC 5 News Anchor, Stefan Holt. Joining him on the main stage is President and co-CEO of Ariel InvestmentsMellody Hobson, in conversation with CEO of FORTUNEAlan Murray. Musical performances include Katie Kadan and Andy Grammer. This is one event you won’t want to miss!

Join buildOn students, Chicago corporate leaders, community activists, and artists as we explore the question, “How can we urgently work towards a more just and inclusive world?” All proceeds power our service-learning programming in Chicago, empowering students to take on the most pressing issues in their communities through direct action.

More and more, I feel that the people of ill will have used time much more effectively than have the people of good will.”

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Dr. King wrote these words in 1964, and they still resonate today. The pandemic and racial justice movement of 2020 laid bare the inequality in every corner of society, from education to healthcare to public safety. But as we move into an era of restoration, we have a chance to use this time to rebuild a more just and inclusive world.

Hosted by Stefan Holt

Award-winning journalist Stefan Holt anchors the NBC 5 News every weeknight. Holt has recently rejoined the NBC 5 news team after spending more than four years working for WNBC-TV in New York. Prior to that, he was in Chicago for nearly five years, where he anchored the NBC 5 News Today. Holt was born and raised in Chicago and is the recipient of several Chicago and New York Emmy Awards, and was recognized with a national Edward R. Murrow Award.

Get Tickets

Featuring Music and Conversation from Special Guests:

Mellody Hobson

In 2015, Time Magazine named Mellody Hobson one of the “100 Most Influential People” in the world, and she’s a nationally recognized voice on financial literacy. Hobson’s leadership has been invaluable in corporate boardrooms across the nation, and her community outreach includes roles as vice chair of World Business Chicago; co-chair of the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art; and a board member of the George Lucas Education Foundation and Bloomberg Philanthropies. Mellody Hobson will be joined in conversation with Alan Murray, CEO of FORTUNE

Katie Kadan

Katie Kadan is a Chicago-based blues and soul singer-songwriter whose meteoric rise to “one-name” status was recently launched by making it to the top 4 finale as a global crowd-favorite on NBC’s The Voice. Born, raised, and living in Chicago, Katie’s epic vocal prowess is a force of nature. Her blues-infused style of soul-bearing belting is Katie’s moniker on her original and familiar songs alike, with a constant presence of her roots in church choirs. Katie will share her powerful voice with us during the Chicago event.

Andy Grammer

Since his self-titled debut, award winning multi-platinum artist and songwriter Andy Grammer has been inspiring listeners around the world. Andy has scored seven chart-topping hits which together have been streamed over a billion times worldwide—including his first break out songs “Keep Your Head Up” and its follow-up “Fine By Me.” Throughout the last year, Grammer spent a majority of his time in the studio working on new music that will be released this Spring. Andy will share one of his inspiring tunes during Why We Can’t Wait – Chicago on May 26th.

Get your FREE ticket for this virtual event

Get Tickets

Support Youth Serving Our Community

Through buildOn’s Service Learning Programs, students in some of Chicago’s most under-resourced high schools are empowered to take on the most pressing issues in their communities through direct action. By helping seniors, the unhoused, and younger children, buildOn Chicago students are learning to lead by first learning to serve. These same students have also worked side-by-side with community members to construct schools in some of the poorest countries on the planet. buildOn has engaged over 1,050 students across Chicago this year alone, who to date have contributed more than 3,000 hours of service to our Chicago community.  What’s more, 98% of students who participate in buildOn programming graduate high school.

Join us as we celebrate our buildOn Chicago students:

Get Tickets Sponsor the Event

Can't make it, but still want to support buildOn Chicago?

Donate Now

Have a question about the event?

Please contact Jason Schultz at jason.schultz@buildon.org for additional information about attending or sponsoring this event.