Edward J. Wehmer
Quinlan School of Business
Edward J. Wehmer
President and CEO, Wintrust Financial Corporation
Edward J. Wehmer is the founder, president, and chief executive officer of Wintrust Financial Corporation. Founded in 1991, Wintrust is a financial services holding company based in Rosemont, Illinois, with banking assets of approximately $26 billion—the second-largest bank group headquartered in Illinois.
Banking has been the primary focus of Wehmer’s career. In 1976, Wehmer graduated from Georgetown University and later became a certified public accountant. His career began at the accounting firm Ernst & Young, LLP, where he specialized in bank mergers and acquisitions for seven years. After leaving Ernst & Young, he became senior vice president and chief financial officer of River Forest Bancorp, a $4 billion banking holding company in Chicago, from 1985 to 1991. While there, he was also president of the firm’s largest subsidiary, Lincoln National Bank, in Chicago. Then he began Wintrust in 1991.
Wintrust provides traditional community banking services, full-service commercial banking, wealth management services, commercial insurance premium financing, mortgage origination, short-term accounts receivable financing, and certain administrative services to customers located in the greater Chicago and southern Wisconsin metropolitan areas through its 15 wholly owned banking subsidiaries.
Wehmer is a member of the board of directors of Stepan Company in Northfield, IL. He serves as the chairman of the board of Northwestern Lake Forest Hospital, on the audit committee of Northwestern Memorial Health Care, as a trustee for Lurie Children’s Hospital and Foundation, and on the board of the Archdiocese of Chicago, where he is a member of its Budget and Operating Committee. Wehmer is also a director of the Catholic Extension Society of America. He is a member of the Economic Club of Chicago, the Commercial Club of Chicago, and the Bankers Club, where he was a former president.
Wehmer and his wife, Dorothy, live in Lake Bluff, Illinois. They have six children.