OPEDC is a not-for-profit economic development organization working to bring business investment to the Village of Oak Park. Since 1974, OPEDC has assisted developers, property owners, and businesses in the purchase, sale, leasing, and rehabilitation of commercial property.

Our organization’s primary functions include:

  • Attracting new business & expanded business development
  • Supporting & promoting business districts
  • Helping businesses find commercial locations via LocationOne
  • Working to broaden Oak Park’s tax base & increase tax revenue.


John Lynch, Executive Director

John LynchJohn Lynch joined OPEDC in 2015, bringing more than 20 years of experience in real estate, infrastructure, and economic development with firms including JLL and U.S. Equities Realty (now part of CBRE). As executive director, Lynch works with developers, retailers, brokers, and public stakeholders to promote and implement a new urbanist vision for Oak Park. Lynch holds an MBA from Northwestern University, an M.S. in Civil Engineering for Purdue University, and a B.S. in in Civil Engineering from the University of Notre Dame. 


Viktor Schrader, Economic Dev. Manager

Viktor Schrader, AICPViktor Schrader joined OPEDC in 2011, obtaining five years of experience in development and business recruitment, and management operations. As economic development manager, Schrader works with Oak Park’s business districts and various local business organizations to provide the business community with the support they need to grow and be successful in Oak Park. Schrader holds an M.A. in Applied Economics and Economic Development from Illinois State University, a B.A. in Economics from Northeastern University, and completed work in the Peace Corps as a volunteer in Western Samoa.


Cameron Gearen, Marketing Manager

Cameron Gearen joined OPEDC in 2016. Cameron is a professional writer who has earned her marketing chops as a freelancer the past five years with clients such as JP Morgan Chase, The Kellogg Company, Rand McNally and others. She is a native of Oak Park, now raising her teen daughters here. Cameron is the author of Some Perfect Year (Shearsman, 2016) and has essays up in The Washington Post and elsewhere. She has taught writing at Yale University. At OPEDC, she is in charge of marketing and social media. Cameron holds an MFA in writing from Indiana University and a BA in English from Wesleyan University. 


Board of Directors

One of the strengths of OPEDC is its Board of Directors.  From the beginning, community leaders have graciously donated their time and talents to the organization.

  • Martin J. Noll, Chairman
  • Thomas Gallagher, Vice Chairman
  • Frank Pellegrini, Secretary
  • Mary K. Ludgin, Treasurer
  • Anan Abu-Taleb, Village Mayor
  • Cara Pavlicek, Village Manager
  • Everett Ward, Director
  • Cathy Yen, Director

  • Village Liaison: Tammie Grossman
  • Alternate Trustee Representative: Robert Tucker
  • Gregory P. Melnyk, Counsel

To contact any and all Board members, please send an email to:  contact@opdc.net