Ted Christians is the Executive Director of Amplify Chicago (Amplify), an initiative of The Academy Group. Amplify is a justice system to professional pathway for young men ages 18 to 24 designed to drive economic development and wealth creation in Chicago’s most resilient communities.

Prior to Amplify, Ted served as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Umoja Student Development Corporation (Umoja). He joined Umoja in 1999 as an intern while working on his master’s degree at the University of Chicago, and in May 2011, he assumed the role of the organization’s CEO. Over his years of service to Umoja, Ted held positions ranging from Student Advocate to Program Director to Chief Operating Officer.

Ted earned a Bachelor of Social Work degree from Calvin College and received a Master of Arts from the University of Chicago’s School of Social Service Administration. He also earned a Certificate of Professional Achievement in Nonprofit Management as a Kellogg Executive Scholar at the Kellogg School of Management and a Certificate of Completion from the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago as a 2017 Civic Leadership Academy Fellow. He is a member of the Leadership Greater Chicago Class of 2008, a 2014 recipient of the Harvard Business School (HBS) Alumni Club of Chicago fellowship to the HBS Strategic Perspectives in Nonprofit Management program, and a 2015 recipient of the Harry L. Davis Executive Education scholarship at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Ted has served as an advisory board and board member of several citywide education and workforce groups including the Chicago Consortium on School Research To & Through Advisory Group, the National Louis University Pathways Program, Generation All, the CPS High School Working Group and as a board member of the Friends of STEM Magnet Academy. His professional experience and fields of interest include criminal justice, workforce development, education, youth development, community development and organizing.