President and CEO of The Chicago Network
As the CEO of The Chicago Network, the premier organization of Chicagoland’s most influential women leaders, Maria Doughty leads with deep personal purpose. She is an ambassador for the organization and its purpose of empowering women to lead and its mission to connect women for personal and professional growth, advance communities, and support and inspire the next generation of women. Having joined in April 2020, she successfully led the organization through the global pandemic, developed a new strategic plan, digitally transformed the operations, rebuilt the employee team, maintained the organizations fiscal stability, and increased member engagement.
Maria brings significant industry experience in highly regulated areas, including insurance and financial services. She is a skilled regulatory compliance, governance, enterprise risk management, litigation, public policy, and government affairs strategist. She has considerable board director knowledge in the non-profit and insurance industry association areas.
She is the board President of the Illinois Coalition Against Domestic Violence, a group of member entities throughout Illinois that provide services for persons experiencing domestic violence. Maria is a board member of The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, a nonprofit body dedicated to increasing knowledge and engagement in global affairs. She is a current board member and the past board President of the Latino Policy Forum, an organization that provides policy analysis and information in the pursuit of fair housing, education, and immigration laws for the Latino community. She was recently appointed as a Special Advisor to the American Bar Association’s Commission on Women in the Profession. Maria holds a gubernatorial appointment as Co-Chair of the State of Illinois Employment and Economic Opportunity for Persons with Disabilities Task Force, whose purpose is to reform existing employment systems via implementation of Employment First, a law addressing subminimum wage, housing, and transportation.
Maria has been on numerous regulatory boards in the insurance sector, including the Illinois Insurance Guaranty Fund (audit committee member), the National Conference of Insurance Guaranty Funds (audit and finance committee member), the Minnesota Joint Underwriting Association (audit and finance committee member and personnel committee chair), the Illinois Insurance Association (board chair, member of audit and finance committee), and the Wisconsin Insurance Alliance.
She previously served as the Director of Public Policy and Regulatory Examinations for Allstate Insurance Company. She oversaw the public policy team and engaged with the CEO and Senior Executive Leadership Team surrounding local, state, and national issues. In this role, she educated and influenced legislators, regulators, and other stakeholders, saved the company millions of dollars in potential fines, oversaw the legal and compliance issues surrounding ESG reporting, and helped manage public opinion on critical ESG-related issues. Maria also led the regulatory examination team and oversaw market conduct examinations and other regulatory investigations countrywide.
While at Allstate, Maria managed complex class action litigation, was the chief legal counsel for Allstate’s Midwest field operations and served as the chief counsel for the Claims Department responsible for managing the claims legal issues nationally. She supervised challenging regulatory crises resulting from catastrophes, such as hurricanes, earthquakes, and wildfires. Maria also counseled the field operations team to identify loss cost and compliance opportunities.
Maria received her BA in Political Science and Psychology from Emory University and JD from Emory University School of Law. She did post-graduate work as a Robert T. Jones Scholar at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland.
Being the daughter of Italian immigrants, Maria has a strong work ethic, an ability to foster collaboration, and an appreciation for community service. She enjoys traveling, hiking, ballroom dancing, and gardening. She lives with her husband and has two grown sons.
The idea of using my experience and passion to help take The Chicago Network into the future is truly thrilling. We are working together to deepen our commitment to equity, enrichment, and empowerment.