Meet our group of dedicated program managers working to build community health and economic wellness on Chicago’s West Side.
Jennifer Norsworthy, Healthy Food Program Manager
Jennifer Norsworthy is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) with a Master of Public Health degree (MPH) focused on directing community-based interventions. She serves as the Chair for the Hunger and Environmental Nutrition (HEN) Dietetic Practice Group (DPG) and on the Communication Committee for the Global Member Interest Group (GMIG) under the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. In additional, she volunteers with GreenCity Farmers Market (GCM) and on the Junior Associate Board for Advocates for Urban Agriculture (AUA). Jennifer is an advocate for regenerative and equitable food systems. In her spare time, Jennifer enjoys experimenting with recipes and traveling to new places.
Chanel Smith, Economic Vitality Program Manager
Chanel Smith is a dedicated DE&I advocate and self-proclaimed conduit, who is passionate about workforce training & development, and advocating for underserved populations. Her drive is to connect individuals to resources that change the trajectory of their lives. She is a proud Chicagoan, with roots on the south side, but a move to West Garfield Park, changed her forever. She received her Bachelor’s degree from Loyola University Chicago in Management with a focus on Organizational Development and Leadership. Chanel has held positions in scrap metal recycling as an operations coordinator, and multiple roles in the nonprofit sector with youth is state care, workforce development, education coaching & mentoring, and leadership and professional development. While working at UCAN, Chanel became a trauma informed professional, and understands the impact trauma has on human development and the barriers individuals face living in marginalized communities. She is currently pursuing the Certified Workforce Development Professional certificate and membership with the National Association for Workforce Development Professionals.
Prior to joining West Side United, she worked as a Talent Acquisition Consultant with Rush University Medical Center’s Human Resources Recruitment department and focused her efforts on diversity recruitment strategies including Rush’s Anchor Mission local inclusive hiring initiative, veteran, and university recruitment. Chanel values teamwork, creativity & innovation, and integrity. In her spare time, Chanel enjoys traveling, attending live music concerts and theater, cooking and spending time with friends and family.
Rachael Wilson, Program Manager
Rachael Wilson is an advocate, coordinator and researcher with a background in urban planning. She is native to Chicago and is also an Irish citizen with roots in Belfast. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Natural Resources and Environmental Science and her master’s in Urban and Regional Planning, both from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Rachael became fascinated with urban planning while working with a team of planners to assess the social impacts of a river remediation as an undergraduate researcher. While completing her masters degree, Rachael focused her research on the intersection of community health needs and the built environment. She also developed interests in economic development and local finance.
Before starting work with West Side United, Rachael worked as the Health Outreach and Engagement coordinator at the Latin United Community Housing Association (LUCHA), located in Humboldt Park. There she forged partnerships with residents and local health institutions. She also led community programming focused on decreasing health disparities in the communities LUCHA serves.
Rachael’s work at LUCHA provided her with a visceral understanding of the negative health effects of displacement, which informed her advocacy work for the creation and preservation of affordable housing with LUCHA and the Logan Square Neighborhood Association.
In her free time, Rachael enjoys singing and playing guitar, catching up on local news, and reading science fiction.