Kathy Graham is the Founder and Principal of The HQ Companies, Inc., a group of four firms focused on corporate and executive growth through strategic alignment, financial positioning, and human capital development. She started her career as a recruiter, winning all the top national awards (most placements, most senior position search, etc.) at each of three well-known search firms before starting The HQ Companies, Inc., with her late husband many years ago.
Kathy earned an MBA in Analytic Finance, Econometrics, and Statistics from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business and a BS in Business Administration with a Marketing concentration from North Central College. She combined her experience of observing how professionals actually progress or not in their careers with her academic knowledge to create the content, programs, and outcomes that The HQ Companies, Inc. are known for.
Kathy is a member of the Chicago Finance Exchange, an invitation-only organization of the top 200+ Chicago women leaders in finance.
She chairs for the second year 2020 Women on Boards Chicago’s education efforts to increase the number of women on U.S. corporate boards.
Kathy is an active leader of the Private Directors Association® (PDA), serving as one of the National Operating Officers supporting PDA’s National Board as VP and Chief Marketing Officer.
Previously, she was a Partner and Co-Chair of the Workplace Initiative for eight years with the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago’s Money Smart Week®, a national campaign to increase consumer financial literacy.
Kathy has served for six years on The University of Chicago’s Alumni Club of Chicago Board as a Board Member and is currently Chair of the Alumni Engagement Committee for all of the University’s colleges and was formerly Co-Chair of their Governance Committee.
As Kathy says, “It’s all about human capital for me—for board growth, career growth, and corporate growth. It’s what I enjoy, helping companies and professionals define and achieve their goals.”