Katherine Gehl was nominated to serve on OPIC’s Board of Directors by President Obama, and she was confirmed by the U.S. Senate in October, 2011. Ms. Gehl is the fourth-generation President & CEO of her family-owned company, Gehl Foods, Inc. where she leads the company’s aggressive growth strategy.
Gehl, founded in 1896, is a food manufacturing company producing low-acid aseptic, shelf-stable dairy products such as cheese sauces, puddings, diet and health drinks. The company is approaching $200 Million in sales and has approximately 300 employees. In the 1990's, Ms. Gehl spent five and a half years in senior management at Gehl working alongside her father, the then-president of the company, before moving to Chicago. Ms. Gehl has been a member of the board for fourteen years, and she returned to the company on a full-time basis in 2007.
Before returning to Gehl Foods, Inc., Ms. Gehl was a Vice President at Bernstein Investment Research and Management providing investment analysis and planning for private clients, foundations and endowments. Prior to joining Bernstein in 2002, she was Special Assistant to Mayor Richard M. Daley for Technology and Economic Development where she was responsible for developing and overseeing the the Chicagoland New Economy Growth Strategy-a five year plan for economic development designed to spur job creation and income growth through technology. In between her work at Gehl's and her work for the Mayor, Ms. Gehl served as Director of Information Technology Services at Chicago Public Schools and Director of Organizational Development at Oracle Corporation.
Ms. Gehl is a former Board Member of The Joffrey Ballet and Public Allies and a current Board Member of the Faye Gehl Conservation Foundation. She is also a member of The Economic Club of Chicago and The Chicago Club. Ms. Gehl is a 2001 Leadership Greater Chicago Fellow and was named to Who's Who in Chicago Business and was honored with the prestigious Crain's Chicago Business "40 under 40, Chicago's Rising Stars" designation.
Ms. Gehl is a graduate from the University of Notre Dame and holds an MA in education from the Catholic University of America, and an MBA from Northwestern University's Kellogg Graduate School of Management.