Candidates

Chris Anthony

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Chris Anthony has lived and worked in the City of Chicago his entire life. Currently a resident of Pilsen (25th Ward), Chris works in real estate, and is involved in community development and equal housing right advocacy. Chris is a voice for environmental issues in his community: air quality, green spaces, and access to safe roads and healthy, local food. 

As a member of the MWRD Board of Commissioners, Chris would apply his real estate expertise to issues of MWRD-owned land leasing and flood control standards for developers. He would be a voice for more public oversight, less frivolous litigation, and strong environmental standards for all our neighborhoods and communities.

Karen Roothaan

karen-roothaan-headshot-02.pngA Chicago native, Karen's career in political activism began in 2002 with a petition for a neighborhood playground. A South Side resident (10th Ward), she has helped establish two community gardens, and successfully urged the City of Chicago to plant trees along local abandoned properties. 

Karen's experiences have made her aware of how hard it is for ordinary citizens to get the simplest, most common-sense things done in their neighborhoods, and she pledges to be a force for accessibility and accountability on the MWRD Board of Commissioners.

"We should not have to beg for good governance," is Karen's motto for civil service. Elected representatives like the MWRD's board should be proactive, engaged members of their communities -- known faces that any local citizen can come to for answers and action. 

As a member of the MWRD Board of Commissioners, Karen will fight for citizen oversight, spending accountability, and local investment. She will work with other city agencies to ensure the MWRD's participation in positive, "greening" improvements, while insisting on transparency and the highest health standards for all MWRD treatments and byproducts.

Tammie Vinson

tammie-vinson-01.jpgTammie Vinson has been a West Side native her entire life. An Austin resident (28th Ward), she teaches in the Chicago Public School system and is a member of the Chicago Teacher's Union and a co-chair of CORE, the Caucus of Rank-and-File Educators. 

Her work in the public schools and in community organizations like Action Now and More Than a Score have shown Tammie how unresponsive our government can be to citizen action, even on the most basic of needs. As an educator, she wants to strengthen the MWRD's outreach mission and to make citizens more aware of the services available to them, and the resources that the MWRD should be bringing to bear in their communities. 

If elected, Tammie would be a voice for everyday citizens and their concerns: flood abatement, property values, and local hiring and contracting when there's work to be done. She brings an extensive municipal management skillset from her work within the public school system and the CTU, and her tireless dedication to local, door-to-door community outreach will make her a needed point of accessibility on the MWRD Board of Directors for Chicago's West Side residents. 

Rachel Wales

Running for the final two years of an open Commissioner's seat, Rachel Wales is an Oak Lawn resident, and grew up in the far northwest suburbs of Chicago. 

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Rachel brings a strong background in environmental sciences to the campaign, including experience with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and multiple garden and recreation agencies. She currently works as a humane farming advisor and a freelance writer for the non-profit Crate Free Illinois.

A longtime environmental justice and animal rights advocate, Rachel was involved in the campaign to close the Fisk and Crawford coal plants in Pilsen/Little Village. She also helped Illinois pass its first-in-the-nation ban on circus elephants. 

As a member of the MWRD Board of Commissioners, Rachel will fight to prioritize the cleanup of Chicago's most-polluted waterways, especially in underserved communities, and will work with other government agencies and non-profits to help prioritize green infrastructure installment across the county.