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Wednesday, June 19, 2019 7:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Palmer House Hilton

Join us for the biggest dealmaking event of the year. ASPIRE features an all-star lineup of entrepreneurs, dealmakers and investors for a day of dynamic discussions and one-on-one networking.


Host Committee

Harry Cendrowski

Harry Cendrowski

Founding Member & Managing Director

Cendrowski Corporate Advisors

Harry is a founding member of Cendrowski Corporate Advisors (CCA) and is a licensed CPA in Michigan, Illinois and Florida. Harry is a veteran of the private equity and venture capital industries as an investor, founder, and advisor to several funds.  He has served on boards of several banks, PE/VC Funds, nonprofit and charitable organizations, including foundation and university boards.  Harry’s experience has allowed him to serve as an expert witness in numerous disputes and he has served as court appointed receiver for multi-million dollar estates, and as the accountant to the trustee in high-profile bankruptcy cases.

Renee Metcalf

Renee Metcalf

Market Executive of Illinois Middle Market Global Commercial Banking

Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Renée Metcalf is market executive of Illinois Middle Market Global Commercial Banking for Bank of America Merrill Lynch, where she is responsible for banking services for middle market companies with revenue between $50M and $2B. Metcalf manages 16 Relationship Management teams covering General, Security Alarm, Construction and Technology Industries whereas her teams are responsible for delivering all aspects of financial services for clients.  Metcalf, a senior vice president, has been in her current position since 2010. 


Metcalf joined Bank of America in 1998 in Kansas City as a client manager in Commercial Real Estate Home Builder Division. After many successive senior positions in Commercial Real Estate she was promoted to Midwest regional executive of Bank of America’s Home Builder Division in 2007. In 2009, she was appointed sales performance manager for the Midwest Commercial Bank before being assigned to her market executive role. Before joining the bank, Metcalf was an estimator at J. Herbert Construction Company in Salem, Ohio, and started her banking career in Cleveland in the management development program of National City Bank.


Metcalf graduated from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, where she majored in finance. She earned a master’s degree in general business from John Carroll University in University Heights, Ohio.  In addition to an impressive career in banking, her civic involvement includes serving as treasurer for the Chicago affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure, and leadership roles on the board of HomeAid Chicago. She was named as one of the 2013 Influential Women in Business by the Daily Herald, and won Bank of America’s 2015 Global Diversity and Inclusion Award and she is a new Board Member of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Renée and her husband, Jim Metcalf, reside in Chicago.

Betsy Ziegler

Betsy Ziegler



Elizabeth “Betsy” Ziegler is the first female CEO of 1871, now the No. 1 ranked university-affiliated tech incubator in the world.  Previously, she was chief innovation officer at the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University, responsible for portfolio innovation and integration of technology into the Kellogg educational experience. From 2011 to 2015, she served as associate dean of degree programs and dean of students. Ziegler holds an MBA from Harvard Business School.

Some of our Sponsors

Smart Business

Conference Location

17 East Monroe Street
Chicago , Illinois 60603
Tel: 312.726.7500