Occupation: Artistic director, Steppenwolf Theatre Company
If Steppenwolf embodies what’s best about Chicago’s theatre scene—fearlessness and social consciousness—then credit Lavey, its leader since 1995. She also transformed the company into a booming business. In March, Steppenwolf started its renovation of the building next door, expanding its already sizable footprint on Halsted Street. Expect more noise when The Qualms, a world premiere by the Pulitzer winner Bruce Norris, opens in July.