Alan M. Bell

Alan M. Bell joined the Openlands board in 2008 and chairs the Governance Committee. He is a partner at the law firm of Charity & Associates, P.C., focusing on municipal finance and real estate finance. He is also the founder and president of The Elements Group, which focuses on nature-oriented development projects. Upon joining the board, Alan was “very impressed and energized by its wonderful mission, as well as the extraordinary passion and demonstrated commitment of the entire organization.” Some of his favorite Openlands projects are the community greening and engagement programs. Alan serves on the boards of the Land Trust Alliance and the Black Ensemble Theater and is a member of the National Association of Bond Lawyers. He is also the founder and president of The Elements Community Initiative. He enjoys bike riding along Chicago’s lakefront and hiking urban trails.


  • B.B.A. (Finance), University of Notre Dame, South Bend, IN
  • J.D., Notre Dame Law School, South Bend, IN
  • Certificate in Project Management, New York University, NY

Civic and non-profit affiliations

  • The Elements Group, President, 2005 – Present
  • Land Trust Alliance, board member
  • Black Ensemble Theater, board member
  • Munity Chicago, Co-Founder
  • Mies van de Rohe Society, member
  • The Elements Community Initiatives, Founder and board member
  • Unity Green at Gill Park, Founder and board member

Favorite activities and areas of expertise

Alan enjoys nature, modern architecture, bike riding along Chicago’s lakefront and hiking urban trails.