• ballots

    It’s Official: Maureen Sullivan Is On The Ballot!

     It’s Official

    It’s official: all the hard work — unpaid field volunteer work going back months — has been worthwhile. All the careful planning, all the management, all the communications and all the detail work — has paid off.  There are no petition challenges, all the I’s have been dotted and all the T’s have been crossed.

    We couldn’t be more proud to report the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners has announced that Maureen Sullivan is on the ballot for the February 24th election.

    As a groundswell of support for real change increases across the 11th Ward and the campaign’s red window signs appear in ever-greater numbers from University Village to Canaryville, the message is clear: Maureen Sullivan is for real.

    It’s Time To Step It Up

    Now is the time to step it up. Here’s how you can help:

    Don’t let this chance pass — our first in decades — to elect a responsive, independent and experienced community leader.

    Show your support for the lady who you’ve seen out there actively improving our community for ten years, not just out there knocking on doors at election time.

    Show your support for the candidate who stood up to the old-boy leadership on 37th Street and Halsted and said “enough is enough”.

    Get behind a leader.  Get behind Maureen Sullivan for 11th Ward Alderman.

    Photo credit: CBS2Chicago

  • Flyer for 11th Ward Tax Tricks session 12/4/14

    11th Ward Tax Tricks Written Up In DNAChicago

    Casey Cora in today’s DNAChicago spotlights the 11th Ward Tax Tricks event we are sponsoring Thursday along with 11th Ward Neighbors.  Casey writes:

    “Hosted by The Civic Lab co-founder Tom Tresser, the ongoing, citywide seminars are for residents looking to learn how money is being collected and spent under the oft-misunderstood economic development tool of TIFs.

    “Here’s how it works: When an area is declared a TIF district — by law it’s supposed to be in a “blighted” area — the county sets a “base value” by totaling the property values within the district.”

    “Then, the amount of property tax money public agencies like schools and parks can take from that area is calculated using that base value for 23 years. Any additional property tax money generated from an increase in property values within the TIF district is instead sent to the TIF fund overseen by the city.”

    […]

    “The event is sponsored by Friends of Maureen Sullivan, the political group backing the candidacy of 11th Ward aldermanic candidate Maureen Sullivan.

    “In a statement, Sullivan criticized TIF misuse and what she’s labeled the 11th Ward’s “old-boy leadership,” citing her decade-long crusade to renovate the long-shuttered Ramova Theater, which is owned by the city.”

    “The city in 2012 spent $330,000 shoring up the building but hasn’t secured a developer to renovate it.”

    About That Shoring-Up Of The Ramova

    City ownership of the Ramova has been a major topic of Maureen’s community work since she created and led Save The Ramova in 2005. It was Maureen who called attention to the specific architectural damages to the building and it was her work that forced the appropriation of  remediation funds. Before her pressure, the city had let the property deteriorate.

    “It’s just one chapter in a ten-year long story of fighting for that theater,” Sullivan said. “But it’s an important one.”

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    Sullivan Puts Mayor Emanuel, Thompson On Notice: Quit Stealing Credit

    Maureen Sullivan, independent progressive candidate for 11th Ward Alderman addressed the media at City Hall today along with Reclaim Chicago and Bridgeport Alliance to demand that Mayor Rahm Emanuel withdraw his campaign commercial claiming credit for closing the nearby Fisk and Crawford coal plants in 2012.

    In a crowded press conference before television and print media, Sullivan, a candidate whose own community work has been claimed by her political opponents, fired at Mayor Emanuel over his own attempt to portray himself as the reason the coal plants were closed.

    “What Mayor Emanuel’s commercial doesn’t mention is that during the first year of his term, he had activists who were protesting the coal plants arrested,” said Sullivan, referencing the May 2011 arrests of anti-coal plant protesters early in Emanuel’s term.

    “There’s a reason his commercial doesn’t mention this. It’s because it’s much tougher for the Mayor to claim credit for the hard work of community activists when the truth is that he put the activists who were doing the work in jail.”

    Sullivan, a ten-year community organizer and business owner, appeared with 25th Ward Aldermanic candidate Byron Sigcho and representatives from community groups including PERRO, Rising Tide Chicago, Bridgeport Alliance. She worked with Bridgeport Alliance on opposing the plants in 2011.

    Afterward, Sullivan reflected on the problem of inactive politicians taking credit for the work of community activists.

    “Community activists get out there, unpaid, and get things done, and it’s wrong for politicians who had nothing to do with it to get the credit. When I won the grant to fund the new playground equipment at McGuane Park in 2012, it was the result of months of solitary work. But when the cameras came out on the dedication day, suddenly there’s my opponent Patrick Daley Thompson standing next to me in the picture. It’s wrong, it’s transparent, and the voters aren’t going to stand for it.”

    Sullivan’s next community event is “11th Ward Tax Tricks” on December 4th, a workshop explaining how the community’s tax money is being misspent using TIFs.

    Photo credit: Reclaim Chicago

     

  • sign - THANK YOU

    Giving Thanks On Thanksgiving Week

    The first phase of our long campaign is over. Petitions will be filed today and we move on to the season where we stop worrying about getting on the ballot and focus exclusively on making it clear how I will improve the 11th Ward.

    The conversation will continue: we’ve knocked on thousands of 11th Ward doors and been honored by all those people giving their time to talk about our community. We’ve earned thousands of dollars in campaign contributions. There are hundreds of our signs on the streets.

    We have earned endorsements from National Nurses United, Reclaim Chicago, The People’s Lobby, Democracy For America — and more are on the way.

    We’ve picked up a lot of steam, and it’s only going to get bigger from here. Over and over, we leave people’s homes in agreement about many things. The number one point of agreement is this: we can do better.

    I want to give thanks to the team for all their hard work getting out that message thus far. You have inspired so many and I have been inspired by so many.

    Just to name a few: Rob Warmowski, Veronica Castillo, Sandy Earley, Rene Paquin, Jennie Biggs, Peter Xantheas, Roseanne Mostacchio, Dan and Lynn Pugh-Bennett, Kevin Robinson, Alison Eichhorn, Kathleen McKenna, Ana Castillo, Angela Rojas-Gonzalez, Alicia Ibarra, John Freyer, Kevin Morgan, Mandy Pence, Tom Stoddard, Mary Welter, Virginia Gibbons, Val Kahan, Jackie Maher, Cori Stankowicz, Peter McMahan, Colleen Duffy, Tom Bailey, Sam Mattone, Jon Ozik, Nate Lefebvre, Mark Lennon, Mary Ann Reid, Ian Tuggle, and my team of advisors in other camps whose priceless advice is always taken to heart.

    Salut, team! We are going to win this!

    And now, let’s have the great Alex Chilton and Big Star say thanks better than I can.

    Photo credit: Groomsadvice.com

  • picture of benton house ramova room

    Sullivan Fundraiser At Benton House’s Ramova Room, November 12

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    (Above: The Ramova Room at Benton House)

    Join us Wednesday, November 12th for the latest fundraiser for Maureen Sullivan for 11th Ward Alderman.  This time the festivities kick off at the Ramova Room in Benton House’s north building at 3034 S. Gratten (aka Ma Benton Lane). As with all our campaign fundraisers, expect refreshments, fine beverages and great company.

    This time, we gather in the Ramova Room,  one of Maureen’s favorite personal projects from her past ten years of service to the community. Here’s some background on Maureen’s involvement in building the room.

    About The Ramova Room And How Maureen Preserved It

    In October 2012, when the famous, Dinos-family-owned 83-year-old neighborhood diner  Ramova Grill closed, Executive Director Ward Miller of Preservation Chicago called Maureen Sullivan. He had tried to save the furniture from the diner by placing it with a Greek history museum downtown, but the plan had fallen through.

    “Even though I was pretty busy with [releasing] our Bridgeport history book, I dropped everything when Ward called me for help,” said Sullivan.  “I knew how fond the people were of the Ramova Grill, so I wanted to make sure the seats and interior would be kept in the neighborhood. The grill opened in 1929, the same time as the theater, and our community has loved it for generations.”

    Added to the furnishings were tables from another shuttered South Halsted dining classic: Healthy Foods.

    Sullivan had an idea.  She contacted Benton House and spearheaded the preservation project by supervising, photographing and publicizing the removal and restoration of the Grill’s interior to its new home: the Pearse Hall gymnasium and activities building of Benton House on Gratten St.  Today it’s used as a community center and for Benton House’s many seniors meetings, as well as playing host to its food pantry.

    Come on down November 12 for a close look at the preserved history and have a chat with the lady who made it happen: the next Alderman of the 11th Ward, Maureen Sullivan.

     

    Photo Credit: We Farm America  

  • john-h-sullivan-amy

    Happy Veterans Day

     

    (Above, bottom left: US Army Sgt. John H. Sullivan, ca. 1943)

    The men and women in uniform deserve more than a day devoted to them. We need to remember their sacrifices and we need to always think clearly about what it is they do.

    We can never forget that our political leadership after WWII has too often used our country’s military callously and carelessly. We must remember that it is our veterans who pay the price for bad command.

    We owe them better command, better to match the service the veteran contributes. We must not fail them, and if we do, we should not sweep it under the rug.

    My father, John H. Sullivan served in the Army in WWII. A military policeman and cook stationed in the Pacific, he kept many of his stories to himself, preferring to have done his bit and not talk about it. That much I inherited from him — it’s probably why I haven’t stepped into politics sooner.

    I know one thing: he would have loved to see me take on the 11th Ward Machine, because he wasn’t a fan. “Stay away from those people,” he’d growl. “They’ll have you doing things you don’t want to do.”

    To be honest, he’d use somewhat saltier language than that.

    This Veterans Day, let’s honor our vets and remember what service really means: doing the right thing.

     

  • 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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    comp-3

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

    Pretending to clean up the streets doesn’t.

  • the action shot

    Another Fundraiser Smash Success Sunday Night

    Last night at Moxee Kitchen on Maxwell St: the second in a series of fundraisers for Maureen Sullivan for 11th Ward Alderman.

    How’d it go?

    Even better than last time, and last time was great.

    Over delicious BBQ and craft beer from Mad Mouse Brewery, the in-house purveyor of suds at Moxee, dozens of supporters again came out to contribute to the campaign, get caught up on what’s happening and continue to plot, plan and prepare for the Maureen’s election as the next Alderman of the 11th Ward.

    Supporters of this campaign know the dollar costs are high. There’s too much money in politics and funds just don’t raise themselves.

    Progressives who support Maureen and want an 11th Ward that actually serves the voters: donate what you can online today and help her win on February 24th!

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    Always watch our site for the latest events and announcements. The next fundraiser will be at the venerable community center Benton House in November.  Details to follow.

  • moxee-frontcomp

    Maureen Sullivan Fundraiser: Moxee Kitchen Sunday Oct 19th

    moxee-frontcomp

    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.

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