Home » Blog » Featured Philanthropist: Kahlil Hogan

Featured Philanthropist: Kahlil Hogan

The Director of Operations at VistaNational Insurance Group, Kahlil Hogan discovered a passion for ChicagoCAC through our A Night of Heroes event and then touring our space, eventually joining the Board of Directors and the A Night of Heroes event committee. We chatted with Kahlil about what has inspired his support throughout the years.

Tell us about your professional background and how you became connected with ChicagoCAC.

I’m one of the Principal Partners and the Director of Operations here at VistaNational Insurance Group. Prior to VistaNational, I was at Blue Cross Blue Shield as a senior account executive and underwriter, and worked with VistaNational as one of my broker distribution channels. I always knew I wanted to be a broker, so I eventually took advantage of the opportunity to join VistaNational and grow with the organization. I’ve been with the agency for almost 18 years now, and bought in as a partner nearly 10 years ago.  Today, we are celebrating our 25th-year anniversary in business.  I enjoy helping employers with their bottom line, especially when it comes to health insurance costs because it’s a very expensive component to benefits and overall compensation. And now that I’m locked in as a partner, I don’t plan on going anywhere anytime soon.

At VistaNational, we do primarily group benefits, and one of our clients was Continental Materials Corporation, run at the time by ChicagoCAC Board President Ryan Sullivan. He introduced me to ChicagoCAC via the A Night of Heroes event back in 2018, and after that, he invited me and a few others to visit the center. We did a walkthrough, met some of the staff and I just immediately found a desire to want to be a part of your organization any way that I could. I offered to join the board and be on the host committee as a co-chair for A Night of Heroes going forward, via Ryan’s suggestion. 

It sounds like Night of Heroes was a great point of entry to ChicagoCAC for you

Absolutely. And it was very well done in 2018, even before I got involved. My experience led me to want to continue to stay involved with that particular event–I like that it’s more of a casual, laid-back type of social setting versus being more formal. I had never heard about ChicagoCAC prior to that, and it definitely opened my eyes. I think the event itself does a good job of bringing awareness of the cause to those who attend. And it’s always great to see when people are just so willing to donate and hit and exceed those goals. Knowing the impact that that has on the center and in the children that it serves is very fulfilling and rewarding for me.

Now that you’re here and know much more about what we do, what resonates with you about our mission? 

Helping children. I’m not sure I understood, until going through the site tour, how big of an issue child sexual abuse really is. You hear stories about people that are obviously mainstream like the R Kellys of the world and others that are victimizers, or former victims who are now victimizers themselves, and for me that all really resonated with the mission of ChicagoCAC and made me want to help out. The cycle of abuse is something that is really eye-opening for people when they learn about it, and I appreciate the mental health component of what ChicagoCAC does – helping people with trauma not only heal but also to prevent them from becoming abusers themselves.

What’s your perspective on a company’s obligation to the community? 

Nationally, we do a lot of charitable giving to many different organizations, ChicagoCAC being one of them, in addition to being a contributor to events. We’re also going to be doing the toy drive again this year as we did in years past. It’s definitely high on our priority list to always give back to the communities we serve.

What’s your favorite part about being on our board? I guess, you know, because that’s an additional level of commitment.

I like the interaction with the board members. I like the different perspectives that are brought to the table coming from different industries and backgrounds. But I also like being involved in looking at the organization as a whole from a vision standpoint, and thinking about where we want to take the organization and make sure that continues to be obviously sustainable from a financial perspective. Just being at the table when those decisions are made about what things are important to continue so we can go beyond the 20-year anniversary of ChicagoCAC and have another 20 years of excellence in service, and continue to build on our donor relationships. This is important to me. 

What excites you about the future of ChicagoCAC? 

I like the growth potential. It seems like there’s a lot of opportunity to bring additional resources into our political work, and to build upon what ChicagoCAC is currently doing. Working with legislators to continue to try to pass laws down in Springfield, and even in DC, to continue to bring awareness to this very important issue, is the goal.

What would you say to someone who has just learned about ChicagoCAC and is looking to support us? 

My biggest advice is really to take a tour of the site. Just seeing the various divisions that are all centrally located and how they interact and make the experience for the client a lot easier and less traumatic, is a really good way, to get engaged and learn about what’s going on.  From there, figure out how to be involved. It’s hard – you don’t get to see the actual clients, obviously for privacy purposes –  but I think the more people can come to the center and see the work that’s being done, the more they can connect with it. Being completely oblivious to the whole issue, I didn’t realize that children going through the traumatic experience were also going through multiple interviews prior to the invention of CACs. I can just imagine the trauma of having to repeat their story over and over and over again to so many people, versus all being done through one central intake and having all the right parties around to capture that information at one time, and how much that eases the level of stress on the child. It’s a very impressive structure you have in place there at ChicagoCAC. 

Tell us more about yourself and your family.

I’m originally from the suburbs of Boston, Massachusetts, and I went to college in Virginia, at Hampton University. My brothers and cousins had gone there and a couple of my aunts and uncles were professors at the university, so I had a strong connection to that school. At Hampton, I met my then girlfriend, now wife, who was from Chicago. After graduation, we basically flipped a coin between Boston and Chicago. She won, and I’ve been here ever since, for about 24 years. So I’m married with two children. My son is a senior in high school, in the planning stages right now for college. My daughter is a freshman in high school – she’s my sporty kid, involved in basketball, tennis, and track, and just an all-around great athlete, and also very brilliant. My wife and I try to make it a point to spend time, just the two of us, whenever we can and go out for date night every other weekend. We know that very soon, we’ll be empty nesters, so keeping our relationship strong and intact is more important now than ever before.

Scroll to Top
Leave Site