Mayor Richard M. Daley today appointed Montel M. Gayles as the city's new Chief Procurement Officer.
Gayles, 47, has served as executive director of the Public Building Commission of Chicago since 2004.
"I know that he brings talent and experience to his new position, as well as a personal commitment to help make Chicago a better place for all our people," Daley said.
The Department of Procurement Services provides support for 44 city departments, overseeing the procurement of more than $2 billion annually in goods and services. It is responsible for managing the city's Women and Minority Business Enterprise program.
Under the direction of former Chief Procurement Officer Barbara Lumpkin, the city made progress with this important program, especially by adopting broader, more reasonable standards for successful businesses to participate in the program, Daley said.
Chicago has led the way in meeting yearly goals for women and minority contracting. Overall, the city continues to meet or exceed its self-imposed goals which mandate that women-owned companies get 5 per cent of contracts and that minority-owned companies receive 25 per cent," the Mayor said.
Daley said he understands the frustration of those who ask why after all these years we can’t do a better job with our MBE program.
"We must and we can do better, and in my conversations with Montel, I have told him how critical it is for us to keep moving forward in that area," he said.
"We have to continue addressing the core reasons that some businesses haven't or can't participate in the rogram. That means we must do a better job for those businesses that are held back because of certification issues," Daley said.
In that connection, Daley said that he has asked Gayles to examine ways to make it easier and more efficient for businesses to become certified. he has asked the Procurement Services department to consider outsourcing the certification of businesses, because that is a process that can delay the ability of new businesses to participate in the Women and Minority Business program.
Daley said he has also asked Gayles to develop strategies to make the Department of Procurement Services more efficient and effective so that Chicago's residents can have confidence that the contracting system operates fairly and with integrity.
"Montel is well-qualified to take on these challenges. In all his management positions, he has developed policies and procedures that have improved efficiency," Daley said.
Gayles became Executive Director of the Public Building Commission of Chicago in July, 2004.
In that position, he has overseen the planning, design and construction of more than $1.5 billion in public works projects for the City of Chicago. These projects include new construction of all police and fire stations, public schools, senior centers, campus parks, water management facilities and City Colleges buildings (including the $254 million Kennedy-King College campus in the Englewood neighborhood.)
During his time at PBC he re-structured the agency by reducing staff and outsourcing construction management responsibilities, saving $2.5 million.
Prior to joining the Public Building Commission, he served as Chief of Staff at the Chicago Housing Authority from 2000 to 2004, functioning as Chief Operating Officer responsible for CHA's day-to-day operations, including procurement.
At CHA he had administrative and operational responsibility to implement the agency’s $1.5 billion "Plan for Transformation."
From 1997 to 2000, he was deputy commissioner of the City of Chicago Department of Buildings where he managed the Information Management Division.
From 1992 to 1996, he prosecuted more than 400 criminal cases as a Cook County Assistant State's Attorney.
He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications from Northern Illinois University and is a graduate of the Illinois Institute of Technology-Kent College of Law.