Growing up the youngest of 10 children in East Chicago, Indiana, a gritty, working-class town, Alan Bell's mother always had an abundant flower garden flourishing in the front yard and his father proudly nursed a robust vegetable garden in the back yard. Through this real life experience and appreciation for nature and its positive impact at a very young age, Alan was inspired to find simple ways for people in the modern world to connect with and appreciate the natural environment. In bringing his inspiration to fruition, Alan founded The Elements Group in 2005 and has personally conceived of, founded and developed all of The Elements Group's current businesses, brands and projects. Alan continues to be inspired by the vision of utilizing modern design and technology to create and build Chicago-based companies and projects that have a sense of simplicity and ease, yet have a lasting, positive impact on people, the natural environment and the world.
In addition to his role as the Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Elements Group, Alan is involved in many civic and community endeavors and currently serves on several boards and committees, including the National Board of the Land Trust Alliance (Executive Committee, Chair of the Governance Committee and Chair of the Community Conservation Task Force), the Board of Openlands (Executive Committee, Chair of the Governance Committee and Chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee), the Board of the Black Ensemble Theater (Vice-Chair of the Board, Executive Committee and Chair of the Governance Committee) and the Advisory Board of the Chicago Children’s Advocacy Center. In 2017, he was admitted as a member of Lambda Alpha International (The Honorary Land Economics Society). Alan has also served in leadership roles for the Chicago Park District Advisory Council Oversight Committee, Uplift Community High School, the Chicago 2016 Olympic Next Generation Leadership Advisory Council and Munity Chicago (a municipal finance charitable organization co-founded by Alan). An avid modern architecture and design enthusiast, he is also a supporting member of the Mies van der Rohe Society.
Alan is also a partner in a Chicago-based boutique transactional law firm, where he has represented clients on numerous real estate, municipal finance and public-private partnership transactions totaling over $16 billion, including lead roles in such high profile finance projects as the new Soldier Field Stadium, the McCormick Place West Expansion and the U.S. Cellular Field Renovation. Alan earned his Bachelor of Business Administration degree, with an emphasis in Finance, from the University of Notre Dame in 1986. He received his law degree from the Notre Dame Law School in 1989. Alan received his Certificate in Project Management from New York University in 2003.