Common Pantry Announces Appointment of Margaret O’Conor as Executive Director

O’Conor brings experience and success leading nonprofits on Chicago’s north side

The Common Pantry Board of Directors has announced that Margaret O’Conor, MA, has been named the new executive director of Common Pantry. O’Conor is scheduled to start as executive director on March 13.

O’Conor comes to Common Pantry after serving as development director of the Greater Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce and Community Council. O’Conor has also served as a volunteer leader in several local organizations including the Chicago Park District, the Friends of Amundsen High School, and the Chase Park Advisory Council.

While at the Greater Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce, O’Conor worked to grow the organization’s member base and acted as lead event organizer for its annual fundraiser, Taste of Ravenswood. Her achievements also included advocating, connecting, and growing small businesses in Ravenswood.

“Margaret O’Conor is an established community leader with a passion for social work and the nonprofit sector,” said Common Pantry board president Anne Zender. “She has a strong track record of fund-raising and working with volunteers to support the missions of the organizations she served. The Common Pantry board of directors sought an executive director to provide vision, creativity, and compassion in managing the organization, and we look forward to moving forward with Margaret as the face of Common Pantry in the community.”

She has a master’s degree in social service administration from the University of Chicago and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the College of Santa Fe in Santa Fe, NM.

“Joining the team at Common Pantry is extremely exciting for me and my family,” said O’Conor. “At a time when social issues across the board in our country are so heightened, I am happy to be stepping back into my social work shoes and bringing my experience and fundraising knowledge to Common Pantry. The rich history of the pantry and commitment from so many people within the community is something I really wanted to be a part of at this juncture in my professional career.”

O’Conor succeeds outgoing executive director Kathleen Trainor, who announced her retirement last fall. The board wishes to thank Trainor for her many of years of service expanding the community involvement and energy at Common Pantry.