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Early morning Tuesday, May 24, 2022, 24th Ward Alderman Michael Scott Jr., resigned his seat on the city council. In his resignation letter posted on Twitter, Alderman Scott Jr. points out his ongoing concerns for public safety and the slow pace resources are distributed in the community has been an uphill battle that has taken a toll on him and his family.
The alderman goes on to say:
The 24th Ward has had many wins during his tenure. Working alongside the community, the 24th Ward, once dubbed the permanent underclass, is poised for a major renaissance.
His resignation came as a surprise to the residents of North Lawndale and Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who hand-picked him as the Education Committee chairman back in 2015. Scott Jr. replaced Alderman Howard Brookins as education committee chair. Before he was elected alderman, he worked at the Chicago Park District, Chicago Public Schools, the Public Building Commission, and After School Matters.
Michael Scott Sr., the father of the Alderman, served on the Chicago Board of Education from 1980 to 2009, serving twice as the body’s president until his death ten years ago. Scott Sr. was a solid ally to former mayor Richard Dailey who died in 2009.
The aldermanic election is about nine months away, and Scott Jr. would like to give his successor a head start, but he will not disclose the recommendation he has made to the mayor as his replacement.
Scott Jr.’s resignation will be effective June 3.
Being at home with his three children every day during COVID-19 opened his eyes to the fact that he was missing being in the lives of his two boys who are both under the age of twelve. When the lifeguard scandal at the Chicago Park District forced then CEO Mike Kelly to resign, Scott Jr. saw this as an opportunity to gain his dream job.
Mayor Lightfoot looked over the alderman and appointed interim CEO Rosa Escareno to the permanent position. Expressing disappointment on Monday, Scott Jr. stated that the appointment of Escareno did not have a role in his decision to resign from his aldermanic seat. Scott is a keen ally to Lightfoot, and during his tenure as alderman, money, and resources were poured into various developments in his ward.
He leaves his aldermanic post on the cusp of the Lawndale Christian Development Corporation’s plan to build 1,000 homes on city-owned vacant lots on the east side of the 24th Ward over the next ten years. The Chicago Neighborhood Initiative will also have a development role in this project.
Also, the East Lake Management and Grace Memorial Development Corporation have plans for the site of a police station on Ogden and Homan. The plan is to build a 56-unit affordable residential building. The next appointed alderman will be attending many groundbreaking ceremonies.
Cinespace Studios just released a statement that the alderman would be taking a newly created position as director of industry and community relations. Cinespace produces shows such as “Chicago Fire and “Chicago P.D.”
Written by Omari Jahi
Edited by Sheena Robertson
ABC 7 Chicago: 24th Ward Alderman Michael Scott Jr. resigns from Chicago City Council by ABC7 Chicago Digital Team
Chicago Sun-Times: One of Lightfoot’s closest City Council allies abruptly resigns By Fran Spielmany
Block Club Chicago: Ald. Michael Scott, Key Lightfoot Ally On West Side, Resigns by
Block Club Chicago Staff
Chicago Tribune: Departing Ald. Michael Scott will join Chicago’s film and TV industry at Cinespace Studios by Gregory Pratt.
Top and Featured Image Courtesy of Daniel X. O’Neil’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Inset Image Courtesy of TNS Staff