Meet Polsky Member of the Month: Christine Saffold

Polsky member Christine Saffold

Polsky Member Christine Saffold represents everything that makes the Polsky Exchange, as well as the South Side community as a whole, so strong. Growing up in Hyde Park, Saffold’s personal connection to the area is what initially drew her to join the Polsky Center. She explains, “when I got back to Chicago last year after a decade away, I wanted to make an impact on the community that raised me. Living away from home, I saw that Chicago was often painted in a negative light, and I felt called to take ownership of the narrative.”

And she sees the Polsky Center as the platform that will allow her to make that difference. “I am delighted to have a stellar entrepreneurial community planted right here in Hyde Park,” says Saffold. “I believe that the Polsky Center will foster businesses that create jobs and opportunities on the South Side and beyond – and I joined to help make that happen.”

Now, in addition to her membership at the Polsky Center, Christine is also a first-year MBA student at Chicago Booth (she even wrote her application in the Polsky Exchange theater!). Her previous work includes the launch of an African operations unit within an impact investment firm and the management of a South Side housing revitalization initiative for an economic development non-profit in Chicago.

For any other aspiring entrepreneurs, Saffold advises “Be an audacious implementer. Resist analysis paralysis – figure out your most important next step and take it. We tend to have grand visions that can seem insurmountable at times, so remember that we move mountains by persistently moving small stones”.

Saffold also agreed to answer a few more questions “just for fun”…

What is the #1 thing on your bucket list right now?

Visit Ethiopia because it’s steeped in history. I’m headed there in March.

If you could have one superpower, what would it be and why?

Healing, to ease suffering.

The zombie apocalypse is coming. Who are three famous people you want on your team and why?

Danai Gurira (she’s a boss), Jason Momoa (for brawn), and Will Smith (previous zombie experience).

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