Suzanne Muchin is a Clinical Associate Professor in the Kellogg Architectures of Collaboration Initiative (KACI), where she teaches Selling Yourself and Your Ideas. She is a featured lecturer in new venture and entrepreneurship courses at Kellogg, and a lecturer and mentor for the Zell Fellows Program, a selective venture accelerator program designed to help student entrepreneurs successfully launch new businesses.
Outside of Kellogg, she is the co-founder of Bonfire, a talent development accelerator for the rising generation of women in the workplace. With her long-time business partner (and Bonfire co-founder), Rachel Bellow, Suzanne is also the host of the popular podcast on work and your life: The Big Payoff, and the on-stage host of TEDX Chicago.
Before launching Bonfire, Suzanne was a founding partner and lead strategist of Mind + Matter Studio, and a founder of Frequency540, a strategic communications agency that acquired her first brand strategy firm, ROI Ventures (Return on Inspiration). With Rachel, Suzanne launched and developed ROI Ventures’ incubator (Return on Inspiration Labs, LLC) and its media arm (ROI Distributed, LLC). She was inducted into the Chicago Entrepreneur Hall of Fame in 2012 for these ventures.
A graduate of Tufts University, Suzanne began her career as a Charter Corps member of Teach For America, and taught eighth grade Spanish in the South Bronx. She then spent four years on the National Staff of TFA as the Vice President for Programs, overseeing recruitment, selection, training and support for all corps members. It was during her time at TFA that Suzanne began focusing on the need for high quality early childhood programs, particularly in the most vulnerable communities. As a result, she became the CEO of Civitas, a non-profit communication agency for the early childhood field which was founded by the CEO of Harpo Entertainment. She spent 11 years in that position, during which Civitas launched large-scale, national communication campaigns that included Begin with Love, Born Learning, What Grown-Ups Understand about Young Children and other efforts. She also co-authored the book Understanding Children with TED founder Richard Saul Wurman.
Suzanne is an investor in impact companies, a mentor to entrepreneurs at 1871 and TechStars, and an LP and Advisory Board member for MATH Venture Partners. She is a Wexner Heritage Member, and on the Board of Directors of the Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center (1871).
In her free time, Suzanne can be found somewhere on the Chicago lakefront path, as she is a long-time marathon runner, having run nine full marathons and four half marathons over the years. That activity started as a stress reducing strategy for raising five (now teenage and adult) children and one rescue dog.