Originally trained as an engineer (he holds a BS in Computer Engineering from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), and with various roles and more than 30 years of experience in the business world, Steve Ingram describes himself as a guy who’s “wired to solve problems.” And that he does—not only in his work with IPM’s clients, but in his volunteer work mentoring urban teenage boys. Steve has deep roots in the Chicago area—his father founded a real estate agency on the south side of Chicago in the 1970s, and Steve still keeps his real estate broker license current.
How has your previous work (or life) experience prepared you for working at IPM?
Prior to IPM, I worked both as an independent consultant and in operations management for large corporations. I understand how businesses operate and the obstacles that often prevent them from achieving their objectives. Being able to relate to what our clients are facing has helped me deliver the type of service they want and need.
Do you have a favorite charity or philanthropic cause that you support or volunteer with?
I support a mentoring program entitled Leaders for Tomorrow through the graduate chapter of my fraternity. This program provides access to role models, exposure to various educational and professional opportunities, and invaluable life skills coaching to teenage males. I also look forward to participating in the annual Letters to Santa Program that answers letters written by some of the neediest kids in Chicago.
What was one of the most challenging work situations you’ve encountered—and how did you handle it?
I worked for a client where there were massive amounts of resignations throughout the organization, constant fears of business closure or sell-off, and a regulatory agency had shut down part of their operations. A few co-workers from IPM were already working with this client, and they gave me valuable advice and support on the best ways to navigate this difficult situation.
Please tell us about your family.
I’m a happily married father of five. My wife has an accounting and bookkeeping business, and our kids are all either in college or recently graduated from college. Although my wife and I are technically empty nesters, we still find ourselves juggling various parental responsibilities.
What are some of your personal interests?
My personal interests include family, watching sports (I’m a die-hard Chicago Bears and Cubs fan), music (my favorite musical artists are Luther Vandross and Eric Benet), and real estate. My family has been involved in real estate for more than 50 years. When I was more active, the bulk of my time was spent helping real estate investors purchase properties that they would either rehab for sale or rent.