Circle Urban Ministries

The information in this column was provided to MinistryWatch by the ministry itself. It was last updated 8/23/2021. To update the information in this column, please email:


Circle Urban Ministries' campus hosts programs to address poverty, housing, hunger, education, drug/alcohol dependency, medical and legal issues. Circle Urban Ministries is working to make the Austin community a better place to live, learn, grow and succeed. We take a four-pronged, asset-based approach to community development:
Inspire Children
Engage Partners
Empower Communities
Equip Families

Contact information

Mailing address:
Circle Urban Ministries
118 N Central Ave.
Chicago, IL 60644-3199


Phone: (773) 921-1446


Organization details

EIN: 363136997

CEO/President: James Borishade

Chairman: Kevin Viravec

Board size: 7


Year founded: 1983

Tax deductible: Yes

Fiscal year end: 06/30

Member of ECFA: Yes

Member of ECFA since: 1989


Circle Urban Ministries, Inc. ("CRCL") is an Illinois based organization that was incorporated in 1981. Its stated purpose is to provide quality professional services in a Christian environment by developing and fostering Christian service programs committed to assisting low income individuals and families primarily on the West side of Chicago.

CRCL operates primarily on contributions and grants. The programs currently offered by CRCL include providing food, clothing, shelter and emergency care; counseling and job training for the unemployed; youth leadership development, education and evangelism, economic development, and a small elementary preparatory school for kindergarten through fourth grade.

CRCL includes Circle Christian Development Corporation ("CCDC") and its wholly owned subsidiary, Austin Real Estate and Investment Corporation ("AREIC"), and Circle Automotive Industries, Inc. ("CAI"). CCDC, a nonprofit corporation, is the owner, general partner and manager of certain inner city ministry-related properties through AREIC. CCDC's purpose is to develop rental properties for low and moderate-income tenants. CAI provides job training assistance to Chicago's Austin community residents.

Mission statement

Statement of faith

Transparency grade


To understand our transparency grade, click here.

Financial efficiency ratings

Sector: Community Development

CategoryRatingOverall rankSector rank
Overall efficiency rating741 of 94147 of 59
Fund acquisition rating905 of 94357 of 59
Resource allocation rating943 of 94359 of 59
Asset utilization rating58 of 9415 of 59

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Balance sheet
Receivables, inventories, prepaids$34,040$345,084$51,429$24,421$74,040
Short-term investments$0$0$0$0$0
Other current assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total current assets$123,284$680,602$153,637$110,142$223,883
Long-term investments$0$0$0$0$0
Fixed assets$366,678$402,466$451,466$857,432$971,169
Other long-term assets$264,488$32,866$60,260$500$0
Total long-term assets$631,166$435,332$511,726$857,932$971,169
Total assets$754,450$1,115,934$665,363$968,074$1,195,052
Payables and accrued expenses$219,394$135,070$126,780$161,165$183,439
Other current liabilities$0$0$0$170,712$256,068
Total current liabilities$219,394$135,070$126,780$331,877$439,507
Due to (from) affiliates$0$0$0$0$0
Other long-term liabilities$0$0$23,926$45,873$0
Total long-term liabilities$166,350$69,340$90,698$45,873$0
Total liabilities$385,744$204,410$217,478$377,750$439,507
Net assets20182017201620152014
Without donor restrictions$368,706$911,524$447,885$590,324$743,545
With donor restrictions$0$0$0$0$12,000
Net assets$368,706$911,524$447,885$590,324$755,545
Revenues and expenses
Total contributions$392,275$486,869$422,342$513,401$549,593
Program service revenue$403,723$584,602$741,426$854,399$870,726
Membership dues$0$0$0$0$0
Investment income$0$745,908$73$387$571
Other revenue$12,484$24,436$34,977$6,118$9,677
Total other revenue$416,207$1,354,946$776,476$860,904$880,974
Total revenue$808,482$1,841,815$1,198,818$1,374,305$1,430,567
Program services$365,864$773,079$477,026$1,169,799$1,188,288
Management and general$774,153$421,349$750,362$215,517$222,875
Total expenses$1,274,408$1,364,724$1,303,263$1,539,526$1,589,207
Change in net assets20182017201620152014
Surplus (deficit)($465,926)$477,091($104,445)($165,221)($158,640)
Other changes in net assets$0$0$0$0$0
Total change in net assets($465,926)$477,091($104,445)($165,221)($158,640)


George WilsonExecutive Di$80,673

Compensation data as of: 6/30/2015

Response from ministry

No response has been provided by this ministry.

The information below was provided to MinistryWatch by the ministry itself. It was last updated 8/23/2021. To update the information below, please email:


In the early 1970's the Austin community on Chicago's far west side was in the midst of major transition. The neighborhood's white residents were fleeing the area as African-Americans moved further west into Austin. Real estate values were plummeting, community services were disappearing, drugs and prostitution were becoming commonplace.

At the same time a group of twenty-something's from a racially diverse urban church were hearing the Lord call them to take some radical action. Called to live out their faith in a new way, they formed an intentional Christian community called the Austin Community Fellowship, shared resources, and a shared vision to impact a declining community with God's love. Circle Urban Ministries (originally Circle Community Center) was born after about a year after their arrival in Austin as an outreach arm of Circle Church Free Church (Pastor Clarence Mains). Glen Kehrein was hired to head up the operations at the Circle Community Center.

We began in 1974 in a storefront with a drop-in youth center. Soon joining Glen were professionals from the Austin Community Fellowship who started other arms of the ministry. A social worker opened a counseling center. A lawyer started a legal clinic. A doctor started a medical clinic. In 1975 Circle Church purchased a former Catholic rectory so that the fledgling ministry could have space to grow.

The ministry took a major step in 1983 when we joined in a faith-and-works partnership with newly planted Rock of our Salvation Evangelical Free Church.

Today, more than 40 years later, Circle has had a strong and widely felt impact on Austin for good and for God. With programs to address family needs, poverty, housing, hunger, education, drug/alcohol dependency, medical, and legal issues, we have seen God's love working through our hands and hearts impact thousands of lives.

The story of Circle Urban Ministries continues to be written...In addition to the programs and staff, our volunteer friends and partners have played a major role in Circle's impact on our community.

Program accomplishments