Dr. Eugenia Orr believes in the age-old power of the written word, especially those not restricted to ones and zeros. Since she could read and write, Eugenia has been conveying thoughts, feelings, ideas and philosophies in the form of written expression. She is a local and nationally published freelance writer, an enthusiastic speaker and interviewer, gifted baker, devoted daughter, and lover of all things beautiful.
Dr. Orr serves as the Director of Public Relations for the Chicago Department of Housing (DOH) and brings nearly two decades of marketing, communications, leadership, and relationship-building experience to the role. In April of 2019 Dr. Orr, a native Chicagoan, was recruited to work on then Mayor-elect Lori E. Lightfoot’s transition team to help with policy-to-communications work and transitioned into Mayor Lightfoot’s communications office specializing in community and ethnic media outreach.
In March 2020 at the start of the Coronavirus Pandemic, she was tasked to lead the communications and education working group for the City’s Racial Equity Rapid Response Team (RERRT), a special task force created to deliver hyper-local information, education and resources to Black and Brown communities which are disproportionately impacted, in both cases and deaths, by COVID-19.
Prior to joining the City of Chicago, she operated a successful specialty writing business, Euyeveia Media and Events, where she crafted customized messaging for an extensive client list that included individuals and organizations throughout Chicago and in Texas, Michigan, Arizona, Georgia and North Carolina. Dr. Orr also served as Chief of Staff for legendary radio station WVON 1690AM where she led the strategic execution of all the station’s media and communication platforms and community events.
Dr. Orr earned her doctorate in Ethical Leadership from Olivet Nazarene University, where she researched the impact of the 2008 housing and foreclosure crisis on Chicago’s ever-gentrifying Bronzeville neighborhood. Her dissertation, Bronzeville Redevelopment and Foreclosure: What Impact Has Condominium Conversion had on the Bronzeville Neighborhood?, is Olivet’s most downloaded reference on foreclosure and neighborhood development. She also holds a Master of Urban Planning and Policy from UIC and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interior Design from the International Academy of Design and Technology. In addition to her skills as a writer and communicator, she is also known for her homemade cakes and pies.