• Home

About OPEN Chicago

OPEN Chicago is a voluntary not-for-profit association dedicated to the promotion of entrepreneurship and professional excellence within diaspora communities in Chicagoland and the Midwest. Our members include professionals, entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, scientists, social leaders, academics, and students.

President's Message

Dear Friends and Colleagues:

I would like to welcome all of you to OPEN Chicago. We are one of the fastest growing chapters within the OPEN network of 13 plus chapters across the world.

OPEN Chicago serves as a platform for Americans of Pakistani origin and diaspora communities across the Midwest. We serve a very large geography and our members come from various parts of the Midwest and from all different professions. We are a group of entrepreneurs that share successes and failures with one another with a mission to help everyone succeed in their businesses and their careers. It is truly an organization that grows on the success of its members. We are very proud of what our members have collectively achieved and how much they contribute to our communities locally.

I would like to invite you to join us at OPEN Chicago and become engaged, connected and volunteer your time to this great organization. It will be time well worth it. You will get the opportunity to meet like-minded individuals, give back to your community, and see what your community can do for you. I hope to see many of you at our events that we have planned throughout the year. We plan to have an annual conference, mentorship events, fireside chats, and many social networking events. We will also be collaborating with many other local organization to host joint events as well as work with our local consulate to support their events. In addition, Charter Members and their families will have an opportunity to attend the OPEN Global Conference which is held annually. These conferences are filled with learning, networking, entertainment and fun for you and your family. You will also have an opportunity to participate in our webinars and virtual events as well as be mentored by a professional in your field. There are countless opportunities that OPEN Chicago provides for learning and engagement. So, come join us, connect, network, and amplify the positive contributions of diaspora entrepreneurs and business leaders across the Chicagoland area and Midwest.


Aamir Chalisa                                                                                            President, OPEN Chicago


Upcoming Events

  • No upcoming events

2017 Annual Business Conference Program Details



9:15 - 9:45

Networking over Coffee and Pastries

9:45 - 10:00

Kickoff – Welcome

Welcome Address by Haris Ahmed (President, OPEN Chicago; CEO, Pragmatium Consulting Group, Inc.)

10:00 - 10:05

Message: Representative of Chicago Office of the Mayor*

10:05 - 10:10

Message: Mr. Faisal Niaz Tirmizi (Consul General of Pakistan, Chicago)

10:10 - 10:15

Message: Kewan Khawaja (President, OPEN Global; Co-CEO, Technologix)

10:15 - 11:00

Keynote Address: Immigrant Entrepreneur Success Story and Overview of Chicago’s Entrepreneurial Ecosystem

Speaker: Jai Shekhawat (Founder, Fieldglass; Board Member, 1871)

11:00 - 11:45

Panel Discussion #1: Changing Landscape of Healthcare

Panelist(s): Khan Siddiqui (Founder and Chief Medical/Technology Officer, higi); and two additional panelists*

Moderator: Omair Siraj (Founder and CEO, Chestnut Health Company, Inc.)

11:45 – 12:30

Lunch Break

12:30 - 1:15

Panel Discussion #2: Entrepreneurial Stories

Panelist(s): Rehan Allahwala (President, Super Technologies, Inc.); Zain Jeewanjee (CEO, Insure 123 Insurance Agency, An Escalon Services Company; Founder and CEO, G1G Travel Insurance);Sajid Patel (CEO, Optimal Design)

Moderator: Aamir Chalisa (Managing Director, Futurity First Insurance Group)

1:15 – 1:45

Energizer: Improv for Entrepreneurs

Pad Connelly (Artistic Director, CSz Business Chicago)

1:45 - 2:30

Panel Discussion #3: Pakistani-American Arts Entrepreneurship: An Emerging Enterprise

Panelist(s): Malik Gillani (Founding Executive Director, Silk Road Rising); Fawzia Mirza, Actor, Writer, and Producer; Sadia Uqaili (Founder, Explore Their Stories, Inc.)

Moderator: Zafar Malik (Dean for Development & University Relations, East-West University)

2:30 - 3:15

Panel Discussion #4: Analytics and Artificial Intelligence

Panelist(s): Omer Abdullah (CEO, Smart Cube); Charles Kwon (Managing Partner and Co-Founder, Concitor); and Raheel Retiwalla (Director of Digital Business Strategy, BlueMetal, Inc.);

Moderator: Farrukh Khan (Co-Founder and CEO, Inference Analytics)

3:15 – 3:45

Final Keynote : Women in Leadership, Media Trends

Speaker: Rida Khan (President, Style Network Channel)

3:45– 4:00


Closing Comments and Recognitions

4:00 – 5:00

Networking Reception

Our Vision and Mission

The vision of OPEN Chicago is to serve as platform that creates value for its community of stakeholders. We seek to inspire, meaningfully connect, and mentor young professionals in their careers; serve as a platform for aspiring entrepreneurs to solidify business plans, find teams members, and fund their ventures; facilitate business acceleration of established enterprises; seek to promote social entrepreneurship; and leverage the platform to increase stakeholder access to critical resources and thought leaders in the Chicago area, nationally, and internationally through sister OPEN chapters.

Signup for Email ListClick Here

OPEN Chicago is a Chicago Chapter of Open Global Initiative.
All Rights Reserved, Copyright. 2017 

Powered by Wild Apricot. Try our all-in-one platform for easy membership management