Join us as we celebrate Omar's commitment to
service at the Building for the Future fundraiser.

Omar Duque serves as the President & CEO of the Illinois Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (IHCC).

A 1994 graduate of Holy Cross High School, Omar was obviously a tip-of-the-spear Crusader, serving on the student council, which included a term as his class vice-president his freshman year and as treasurer during his senior year. He was a member of the National Honor Society and made the honor roll in each of his four years at Holy Cross. Omar was a regular participant in the famed Holy Cross rough-and-tumble early-morning intramural program, and was a four-year member of the Foreign Language club, where he served as President during his senior year. He also participated in soccer, the Physics Club, Service Club, Quill and Scroll and as a Prom Committee member. During high school Omar was active in the Chicago Association of Hispanic Journalists as well as the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials.

Omar is passionate about entrepreneurship and the role entrepreneurship plays in building community and in helping create a better world.

Under his leadership IHCC is leading an initiative to connect more Latinos to the innovation economy. IHCC has partnered with 1871 Chicago to develop a first-of-its-kind incubator program for Latinx tech startups. Since launching in late 2016, 39 Latinx founders have participated in the program’s three cohorts. Cohort companies have already raised more than $2.25M in early stage capital, secured contracts with Fortune 100 firms and gone on to notable accelerators including Elmspring and Techstars.

IHCC is a unique community of business owners, entrepreneurs and professionals committed to empowering individuals through economic growth. With decades of combined business experience, IHCC engages entrepreneurs through community advocacy, networking and innovative one-on-one training designed to help them be leaders and agents of change in today’s world.

Omar founded the Center for Hispanic Entrepreneurship and ENTERpreneur – a summer youth entrepreneurship program for Chicago-area high-school students.

Omar is a Chicago native whose parents immigrated to the United States from Guatemala. He received his Bachelor of Science in Journalism from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. He worked as a reporter for the Albuquerque Tribune, one of the last afternoon daily newspapers in the country. Omar is a member of the board of directors for Loyola University Medical Center and Delta Dental of Illinois. 

Read more about our scholarship dinner honorees here.