Rich Bondie joined the ICA building team as Facilities Manager in March, 2019, bringing years of experience working with Chicago Public Schools.
What is your role in the organization?
My role here is to identify the needs of the building, whether it be building codes, maintenance, waste, ways to increase efficiency—anything related to overall operations of the facility—and to develop standard operating procedures that meet those needs. In a typical day, I interface with our engineering staff, our handyman, our tenants, and City inspectors, let alone phone calls and emails. One of our major projects at the moment is renovating our 7th and 8th floor spaces.
What keeps you motivated in your role?
I’m motivated by being part of an organization that has a social impact within its community. ICA creates that impact by providing space for the nonprofits in the building, such as Heartland Alliance Health and Sarah’s Circle. I believe that GreenRise and the organizations housed here are a beacon for so many people, a place where people can go to get the services they need here on the North Side.
My goal is to make a lasting impact here that will endure for years to come. To me that means ensuring a warm, safe, and dry place for all the people who use this building that is in total compliance with local and state building codes—basically sustaining GreenRise as relevant and functional anchor for the next 50 years of ICA.
How did you come to work at ICA?
I worked for Chicago Public Schools for many years, where I was trying to make an impact on children and schools in underserved communities by addressing environmental and life safety issues that affected them. Eventually my department was privatized, which I felt impacted my ability to effectively serve those youth.
I knew I wanted to move on, but I didn’t want to work just anywhere. I sat for several interviews and had a lot of offers, but something about ICA piqued my interest. I was looking for an organization with a social mission, and really saw that with the clients that GreenRise serves. I thought I’d be able to get things done here in a way I wasn’t able to before.
What makes ICA unique?
To me what makes ICA unique is the focus on inclusion, that feeling that if we’re able to help, we will. We don’t turn anyone away, and we don’t make excuses about why we can’t do something. I see ICA as always striving to move forward its mission, regardless of obstacles.