Upcoming Events

CREW Careers
May 06, 2014
Time: 05:30 PM - 07:30 PM
Location: Various Locations

May 07, 2014
Time: 06:00 PM - 09:00 PM
Location: Various Locations

May 13, 2014
Time: 08:00 AM - 09:00 AM
Location: Starbucks in Willis Tower, 233 S Wacker

More Events

[ More Upcoming Events ]




CREW Careers Needs Volunteers! 
Four Tuesday evenings beginning on May 6th
[ Learn How You Can Help ]





First American Title Ins Co
USI 


Associated Bank
Baker Tilly
Cushman & Wakefield
DLA Piper
Gould & Ratner
GRS Group
Prudential Investment Mgnt
Schiff Hardin LLP
Shepard Schwartz & Harris

Standard Parking
Plante Moran


Media Sponsors

Illinois Real Estate Journal
PR Services by ktpr
Northern Illinois Real Estate Magazine

CREW Foundation

CREW Foundation’s mission is to support CREW Network in advancing the success of women in commercial real estate through charitable, philanthropic and educational programs. The Foundation?s Envisioned Future is to create a world where women and girls of diverse backgrounds have unlimited opportunities for economic and professional success.

Together we can change lives!

“‘Giving back to the community that has nurtured us is both a privilege and a responsibility. None of us got to where we are without some combination of help or good luck mixed in with our own hard work. Investing in the next generation of women will be our permanent legacy.” - Dorothy Cunningham


To support CREW Network in advancing the success of women in commercial real estate through charitable, philanthropic and educational programs.

CREW Foundation was incorporated in 1998 as a 501(c)(3) charitable foundation and is the philanthropic component of the Network of Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW Network).

CREW Network is a full service business development network consisting of 60 chapters, comprised over 7,000 members involved in all aspects of commercial real estate throughout the United States and Canada. The following is a brief profile of the members of CREW Network:

  • More than 63% are Presidents, CEOs, Partners or Senior Managers of their firms
  • Median annual income is in excess of $100,000, and average income is $125,800 per year
  • The average member has 14 years experience in commercial real estate
  • 97% are female


Since its inception, CREW Foundation has accomplished the following:

  • Awarded over $600,000 to 11 national programs specifically focused on economic self-sufficiency for women and girls
  • Developed key relationships with organizations working to effect systemic change for women and girls
  • Provided administrative support and consulting to numerous chapters to assist with their local charitable fundraising
  • Created leadership opportunities for CREW members to serve on boards of national charitable organizations
  • Developed a pilot program, national in scope, “CREW CareersTM: Building Opportunities” designed to advance the success of women in commercial real estate and develop tomorrow’s leaders today!

2006 Grants

Dress for Success - Dress for Success advances low-income women?s economic and social development and encourages self-sufficiency through career development and employment retention. A previous Foundation grant provided funding for the Professional Women?s Groups, which provide ongoing support and career development guidance to low-income women who have found jobs, to increase their chances of succeeding in those positions. A 2006 grant to this organization will be used to help support the Professional Women?s Group Success Summit, an annual conference for both Professional Women?s Group members and Professional Women?s Group coordinators to develop leadership capabilities through networking, by learning new personal and professional skills and by exploring issues surrounding employment retention. The Summit gives economically disadvantaged women the tools to lead their local Professional Women?s Group chapter members, mobilize additional resources in their community and bring awareness to a local community initiative.

Girls For A Change - Girls for A Change trains lower income middle and high school girls to be change agents, leaders and innovators. CREW Foundation awarded its second grant to this organization in 2006 to support the work of the Girl Action Teams. Together, ten girls and two professional women design a solution to the community challenges the girls identify. The Girl Action Teams develop a strategic plan including team values, a timeline, a budget, a fundraising plan, and a community outreach plan. The Girl Action Teams work closely with schools and families to implement community solutions that improve neighborhoods and through their work on the teams, the participants are ultimately empowered to become leaders.

Smiles For Success - Smiles For Success offers dental care to women graduates of accredited job readiness and placement programs or other community-based agencies thus helping those who are helping themselves. The dental care offered will be a short-term boost to those who need treatment unavailable to them through government programs or traditional insurance as they move from welfare to the work force. CREW Foundation awarded its first grant to this organization in 2006. The grant will be used to provide free dental care for women who are unable to financially afford treatment which will improve oral health, relief of pain and restore self-confidence and assurance. Smiles For Success provides an opportunity for the dental community to find innovative, constructive ways and means to assist motivated women to obtain employment and independence in an increasingly competitive and demanding labor market.

Women Work! - In 2006, the Foundation awarded its sixth grant to Women Work!, an organization that helps women achieve economic security through job readiness, education, training and employment. The grant will be used to implement a national and state focused education and training campaign to provide low-income women with information on financial literacy and Individual Development Accounts (IDAs). IDAs promote savings among low income individuals and can be used to buy a first home, pay for postsecondary education, or start a business. Working closely with five state affiliates and nearly 500 women?s education and training programs nationally, Women Work! will provide 1,000 women with financial education classes and enroll 300 women in IDAs. A previous grant was used to help fund Leadership Works!, a leadership development institute. In a previous year, the Foundation funded a pilot program designed to recruit and train low-income women for high paying jobs in the technology sector. A subsequent grant funded the translation of this curriculum into Spanish in order to reach the female Hispanic community, which is currently the most underrepresented group in the IT sector.

Previous Grants

Executive Service Corps Affiliate Network (ESCAN) - ESCAN is a nationwide network of 33 nonprofit consulting groups, each dedicated to improving the quality of life in the communities it serves, by improving effectiveness and efficiencies of nonprofit organizations. The Foundation awarded its first grant in 2005 to support the organization’s design and implementation of a program to strengthen the financial competencies of at least 20 nonprofit organizations that have as their mission the economic self-sufficiency of women and girls. The resultant effective operations will expand the capacity of these agencies to provide services to women and girls. Girl Scouts - CREW Foundation partially funded the development of an activity booklet titled Start Up designed for girls ages 11-17 on the topic of women as entrepreneurs, for those who requested resources and training in that specific area.

Girls Inc. - CREW Foundation has provided seven grants to this organization. The initial grant funded the creation of an economic literacy curriculum for girls. Additional grants have funded such programs as Operation SMART and Thinking SMART, programs designed to encourage girls in the areas of Science, Math and Relevant Technology. Last year’s grant helped Girls Inc. match a five-year $2.2 million grant from the National Science Foundation and will assist with the completion of the Thinking SMART curricula and training guides and the marketing of the program to affiliates nationwide.

Habitat for Humanity International - The Foundation awarded a grant to this organization in 2004 to support a new Habitat for Humanity program called Girls Build. Girls Build is being designed in collaboration with Girls Inc. and the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, and will reach girls between the ages of 10-24, educating them about their community, the value of decent, safe and affordable housing, the role of Habitat for Humanity, and how women can work together to make a difference in the lives of others. The CREW Foundation grant will enable the printing and production of materials and activity kits designed to educate and inform the participants and will cover the cost of travel and training of the volunteers.

Mercy Housing - In 2005, the Foundation awarded its first grant to Mercy Housing, an organization that creates stable, vibrant and healthy communities by developing, financing and operating affordable, program-enriched housing for families, seniors and people with special needs who lack the economic resources to access quality, safe housing opportunities. The CREW Foundation grant will be used to implement the Economic Development component of its programs for residents in its family affordable housing properties. Earned income tax credit, financial education, and homeownership preparation will help women and girls become more economically self sufficient. Specifically, the Foundation’s funds will support the upgrade of a database that will enable Mercy Housing to collect and analyze data on program outcomes.

Wider Opportunities for Women (WOW) - CREW Foundation’s 2004 support was utilized to build on WOW’s Self-Sufficiency Teen Workshop that was piloted last year with a grant from CREW Foundation. The workshop is designed to prepare low-income teenage girls to meet the demands of an increasingly skilled workforce, while expanding their vision of the kinds of jobs to which they can aspire. This project builds upon CREW Foundation’s 2000 investment in the Family Economic Self-Sufficiency project by drawing on the research and advocacy undertaken in the past years and applying those experiences to a new population - teenage girls.

Women in Community Service - The Foundation has previously provided funding for Women In Community Service, an organization that works largely with women transitioning from welfare or incarceration and helps them develop critical work and life management skills needed to support their life changes. The grants were used to develop the organization’s strategic plan, hire critically important staff, create and implement a comprehensive plan, build the Human Resources capacity, strengthen the communications programs, develop and train staff, and to improve technology.