• Comparison of 11th Ward Office cleanup and Maureen Sullivan cleanup

    Who Cleans Up The 11th Ward? Not The 11th Ward Office

    While usually a quality source of fair-minded coverage about the 11th Ward, writer Casey Cora at DNAChicago made a small mistake with his photo yesterday.

    It happens: doing local news well is a tough job, and sometimes a detail will slip.

    But when a small mistake points to a big leadership problem in our community, it’s worth talking about the problem.

    In Casey’s story “You Can Help Clean Up The 11th Ward,” as published Wednesday morning, he unwittingly spread confusion about who cleans up the 11th Ward’s streets — and who doesn’t.

    It’s about the picture he used. Here’s how the story and original picture appeared at publication time:

    Original DNAChicago Story

    (Above: Wednesday’s DNAChicago story mistakenly using photo of Maureen Sullivan and volunteer crew, 2012)

    The problem is that the story talks about a cleanup event “co-hosted by the 11th Ward and the city’s Streets and Sanitation Department”.  But the photo doesn’t show that event. It shows instead an entirely independent and effective, home-grown neighborhood operation. It shows the 2012 “Bridgeport Clean And Green” created, hosted and managed by Aldermanic candidate Maureen Sullivan and Rene Paquin of the Bridgeport Alliance. It shows the hundreds of pounds of garbage their team took off the streets and the crew of awesome volunteers they organized to do it.

    This matters, because who you don’t see in this photo is anybody from the 11th Ward office. They were all no-shows. No Patrick Daley Thompson, no Alderman Balcer, no John Daley.  Not even anybody from the South Loop Chamber of Commerce could be bothered to show up and lend a hand.

    Which is par for the course, because they had nothing to do with it.

    This photo reminds us that under Patrick Daley Thompson and Alderman Balcer, the 11th Ward office doesn’t actually get the streets cleaned up. It reminds us that real cleanup takes organization, community activism and hands-on work to accomplish, and that’s not what they do.

    That’s what Maureen Sullivan does. And the picture Casey ran shows her just getting started, launching the first of a multi-year effort.

    Again, this isn’t to bash Casey Cora. But it is time we all got clear about who actually works for the people of the 11th Ward, and who pretends to.

    There’s A Right Way And A Wrong Way To Do It

    On one hand, there’s activism — organizing, leading, following through. That’s what Maureen Sullivan does.

    And on the other hand there’s what Patrick Daley Thompson and Alderman Jim Balcer prefer: inactivism.

    At the 11th Ward office, “cleaning up” the neighborhood streets is a strictly hands-off process, and it shows.  The 11th Ward office merely publishes a flyer, tells you to call 311 and then never follows up, never organizes volunteers, and most importantly, does not remove any trash.

    This approach doesn’t clean garbage off the streets, and here’s the proof.

    The last time they promoted a local cleanup was on August 23. We were paying attention, so we took pictures at the end of that day.

    See the difference for yourself.

    Comparison of 11th Ward Office cleanup and Maureen Sullivan cleanup

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    The choice is clear. Community organization and leading volunteers is what works.

    Pretending to clean up the streets doesn’t.

  • moxee-frontcomp

    Maureen Sullivan Fundraiser: Moxee Kitchen Sunday Oct 19th

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    University Village’s finest barbecue and brewery plus the next Alderman of the 11th Ward Maureen Sullivan. What’s not to love?  Come on by for the Maureen Sullivan For 11th Ward Alderman Fundraiser at Moxee Kitchen at 724 W. Maxwell St. on Sunday night October 19th from 6 to 8:30.  $25 suggested at the door.  Free appetizers and tastings of their excellent menu along with a cash bar.

  • Rob Warmowski, Maureen Sullivanand Dan Pugh-Barnett

    Palmisano Park Advisory Council Wins Award Under Sullivan Leadership

    Friends Of The Parks Logo

    The campaign is proud to announce the Palmisano Park Advisory Council (PAC) has been selected by Friends Of The Parks for the 2014 Volunteer In The Parks Award for Outstanding Park Advisory Council.

    The PAC is headed by its elected President and 11th Ward Aldermanic candidate Maureen Sullivan.  The council was cited for “creating unique events such as the Bridgeport Air And Water Show, hosting clean up days, and helping to restart the McGuane PAC”.

    In a message to Sullivan, Friends Of The Parks Director Maria Stone said “The work the PAC does truly shows the passion you have for this unique park. It is a pleasure to honor you with this award. Thank you for all that you do for Chicago’s parks and public open spaces!”

    Sullivan, a declared candidate for 11th Ward Alderman and a longtime neighborhood volunteer and community organizer, has led the PAC for three years, winning election to President three times. Under her leadership and organization, the park has played host to the neighborhood’s most popular family events including music, nature, science and public health efforts.

    “I’m grateful for the recognition of our team,” said Sullivan. “We filled a leadership void to bring our beautiful park and the community closer, and I’m very proud of our creative and hands-on approach.”

    Since 1975, Friends Of The Parks have advocated for the parks and monitors the condition and safety of the Chicago Park District and forest preserves of Cook County.

    The Palmisano PAC leadership includes Sullivan as President, Vice President Rob Warmowski and Secretary-Treasurer Dan Pugh-Barnett.

    A celebration of the award is planned on Saturday, October 25th by Friends Of the Parks.

  • Revelers at Sullivan Fundraiser Tuesday Night

    Sullivan Fundraiser A Big Hit

    Revelers at Sullivan Fundraiser Tuesday Night

    Dozens of Sullivan supporters came out last night at our fundraiser, and we can’t thank them enough. The party kicked off at 6 with cocktails by the inimitable Ian Tuggle of the storied Gold Star tavern, and a musical program of wall-to-wall surf rock courtesy of a shadowy lurking figure known only as DJ Harrumph. A terrific time was had by all.

    “It was a great time. We had a big turnout and we needed it because running for office is expensive. Outreach and research costs really add up,” said candidate Maureen Sullivan.  “We’re working every day to get the message out and it’s so incredible and welcome to see our supporters line up to help out a progressive campaign.”

    The North Side-South Side event served sandwiches from Bridgeport’s Soluri Italian Deli and supporters from all over the city came out to show their love for the Sullivan campaign.

    The fundraiser was the first in a series.  The next bash has been scheduled for Sunday October 19th at Moxee Kitchen at 724 W. Maxwell. The ongoing fundraiser schedule will be published at our website.

  • Photo of Ricobene's on 26th

    Petition Drive: Ricobene’s Saturday Oct. 4

    Photo of Ricobene's on 26th

    The signature collection effort to get on the Aldermanic ballot continues this Saturday — join the campaign at our rally point on Saturday at Ricobene’s 252 W. 26th St at 10AM and help us collect the signatures we need to make sure Maureen is on the ballot on Election Day February 24th.

    (Photo Credit: The Antitourist)

  • Logo of Northside DFA

    NDFA Endorses Maureen Sullivan For Alderman

    Logo of Northside DFA

    On Thursday night before a packed house at Chief O’Neil’s, Maureen Sullivan received her first major endorsement in her campaign for 11th Ward Alderman. Progressive political action committee Democracy For America‘s North Side chapter cast 35 votes to endorse Maureen amid wild cheers and applause.

    Sullivan, who had addressed NDFA the month before, missed a unanimous vote by only one delegate who abstained for not having seen her address to the group.

    At the endorsement, supporters spoke in favor of her campaign and even had some choice words for a competitor whose late-entry platform had been noticed to have striking similarities to her own.  Maureen has received campaign training from DFA’s national team in the past and has worked on NDFA-endorsed candidacies including that of Rob Martwick (IL-19th) and Jay Travis.

    Democracy For America is a progressive political action committee headquartered in South Burlington, Vermont and was founded by former Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean.

    Said Sullivan: “I’m thrilled to accept this endorsement and I’d also like to mention another candidate who was also endorsed that night. My congratulations go out to CM Winters, who is running for 21st Ward Alderman. She’s a friend, a fellow South Sider and a big part of the progressive wave coming to retake the City Council in February.”

  • Maureen Sullivan: Progressive Activist Poised To Beat The Daley Machine

    Screenshot of Curtis Black article on Maureen SullivanCurtis Black‘s profile piece published today in the Chicago Reporter says it all:  Maureen Sullivan is the popular progressive activist poised to beat the downtown Daley machine on its own turf.

    In the first major piece on her Aldermanic race, Sullivan’s clear alternative to the 11th Ward leadership and its tendency to do nothing but claim credit is illustrated by Black:

    “Bridgeport native Maureen Sullivan, who has founded civic, business and park groups, and organized against school closings in Bridgeport, describes a local political elite that has become too comfortable with the status quo and neglected the neighborhood.

    Sullivan may represent an approach we’ll see from more aldermanic candidates this year: emphasizing the local impact of citywide policy issues like education and TIFs along with ward service concerns — and tapping into the growing sentiment against Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s policies.

    She calls the mayor “a Wall Street banker from Wilmette who wants to help his friends become even wealthier at our expense” and attacks the “rubber stamp City Council” including retiring Ald. James Balcer, who’s backed Emanuel in 100 percent of contested council votes.”

    “Balcer announced his retirement shortly after Sullivan entered the race, throwing his support to Patrick Daley Thompson, grandson of the original Mayor Daley and a commissioner of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District since 2012. Thompson’s name is featured prominently, along with Balcer’s and that of his uncle’s, ward committeeman John Daley, in the windows of the 11th Ward Democratic Party building at 36th and Halsted.

    downtown corporate attorney who handles property tax appeals and represents developers seeking TIF money, Thompson said his real estate and development experience would be an asset to the ward. But it didn’t seem to help a few years ago, when the Better Government Association identified Thompson as one of several politically-connected individuals who’d been granted homeowner exemptions for investment properties. Thompson pled ignorance and paid the back taxes.”

    Read the entire Curtis Black article on Maureen Sullivan here.

     

  • A Thought On Labor Day

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    Even if you’re lucky enough to have one or two part-time jobs in this “recovery” economy, chances are you’re still struggling to make ends meet. We live in a time where working people are in the fight for their lives, only one slip-up away from disaster.

    That’s a reality that has consequences — and casualties. Didn’t your heart break when you read the story from New Jersey about Maria Fernandes? The 32 year old worked four part time jobs and lost her life when she tried to get a few hours of sleep in her car between shifts.

    Maria died in her Dunkin’ Donuts uniform.

    Shocking stories like this and so many others from our own neighborhoods are reminders that in these times, hard working people are undervalued and taken advantage of more than I can ever remember.

    Without working people, nothing happens. No wealth is created for anybody.

    That seems so obvious, doesn’t it?

    Why, then, do so many of our leaders act only in the service of big business and not the workers that create the revenues that big business earns?

    Today on Labor Day, we celebrate the people who make our country’s economy possible.

    But I want our workers celebrated every day. I want our political leadership to stop selling out to the people who cut working people’s wages, who play games with their working schedules, who threaten them and who move better jobs overseas so workers’ choices dwindle.

    My opponent in this race, Patrick Daley Thompson, worked for years for a law firm that actively helps companies send jobs overseas. They brag about it today.

    Today is Labor Day. The election in February is months away, but during that time, I want you to think about who is a friend to hard working people in this election for 11th Ward Alderman.

    And to think about who isn’t.

     

     

    Maureen Sullivan is running for Alderman of Chicago’s 11th Ward.

  • Alderman Balcer Steps Aside

    Jay Levine at CBS2Chicago.com reports that 11th Ward Alderman Jim Balcer will not run for re-election, owing to health issues stemming from his service in Vietnam.

    Balcer tells CBS 2 Chief Correspondent Jay Levine that he’s stepping down to pursue treatment for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder stemming from his military service in Vietnam.

    Balcer, a former Marine, was awarded a Bronze Star for heroic acts during combat.

    Upon hearing the news, Maureen Sullivan, candidate for 11th Ward Alderman, issued a statement:

    “Along with so many in our Ward, I salute Jim Balcer for his distinguished service to our country and for his sacrifice of his health. I am saddened that he faces this personal challenge today and it is my sincere hope that he recovers as soon as possible. Get well, Jim.”

     August 8, 2012: Maureen Sullivan shares a copy of her book with Alderman Jim Balcer

    Above: In happier times: Maureen Sullivan and Alderman Jim Balcer share a copy of Maureen’s new book at a 2012 CTA Board meeting. Both addressed the board that day on the topic of the 31st St. bus.

    Photo: Josip Trutin

     

  • Gathering Volunteers, Petitions And Momentum

    Maureen Sullivan and more than fifty friends kick off her campaign for Alderman

    The popular progressive challenger receives a sharp expansion of support, gathers volunteers

    After kicking off her bid for 11th Ward Alderman one week ago, Maureen Sullivan‘s campaign is already reaching thousands of voters.

    Gathering dozens of cheering supporters in front of the ailing Ramova Theater last Monday, Sullivan started things off by calling for a major change in the local political leadership, unveiling her campaign platform and promising to  bring accountability to the Alderman’s office.

    The message is very well-received.  Online engagements are off the charts for the campaign, says campaign Communications and Policy Director Rob Warmowski.

    “We’ve reached nearly ten thousand people in only the first week,” said Warmowski.  “Social media, web and community channels are buzzing about her candidacy, and the conversation is in her favor.  People in the 11th Ward are already excited about her thanks to her many years of community service, and people who are just learning about her are impressed by her record and platform. She’s inspiring volunteers to stand up and ask to help.”

     Gathering Volunteers On The Eve Of Petition Circulation

    Snagging over 600 likes on Facebook right out of the gate is great, but the campaign runs on real-world support — and that means showing up and helping out.

    The campaign’s volunteer force will be hitting the streets starting this week to gather signatures for Sullivan’s position on the February 24th election ballot. Readers wishing to join up and help Sullivan get on the ballot can sign up at the campaign volunteer page.

    How many volunteers does the Sullivan campaign have currently?

    “Dozens and growing every day” says Warmowski. “But there’s always room for more.”

     

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