Stacy Davis Gates, Vice President of the Chicago Teacher Union, is a rabble rouser. Lately, she and her union have been in the news, as they have been threatening to strike in October. As you’ll hear, Stacy thinks of herself, and other teachers, as social justice warriors, rather than merely instructors. Teachers, as Stacy describes them, are instruments of uplift for disadvantaged children, and play a major role in improving our society.
This will be my last podcast for a while, as I’m going to take some time to figure out how I might improve it. If you haven’t already, please click on the links above and take a listen to the other episodes. They’re great!
John R. Daley, scion of THE Daley family, does work in politics. He’s a lobbyist. But he’s also a few more things. A one-time tea shop owner. Founder and active participant of a non-profit radio station, a huge wrestling fan and much more. He won’t come out and say it, but there’s definitely a certain amount of negotiating with being a Daley. Clearly though, John seems to do a pretty good job of dealing with it, almost to the point where you begin to think he doesn’t think about it at all.
Mark Payne is one of those guys who makes the gears turn. You’re probably not looking for him, but if you see him working, the words “engine” and “moving” are good descriptions of what you see. A South Side guy who has lived in South Shore, Englewood and Beverly, Mark has regularly managed to find himself in spots where he has to organize and negotiate. Whether it be as a South Side Black man helping North Side white working class people gain trust in the CTA’s Brown Line renovation, or trying to rebuild a civilian police oversight organization. Somehow, he constantly ends up in the middle of things.
Alejandra Moran has managed press and communications for many, many Latino politicians in Illinois. But she started on the other side of the microphone for ABC radio, La Raza and Telemundo, before she became a press flack. Because she’s been through the wringer so many times she has a long view of things and has also experienced a few personal trials, as she told me in an interview a short while ago.
Tarrah Cooper believes Chicago is the best city in the nation. In just three generations, her family went from sharecroppers to senior advisor to the Mayor of Chicago. While she had to work her way up to becoming Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s Press Secretary – with a stop in the Obama Administration in D.C. – she believes that it’s the magic and opportunity of Chicago, that made it possible.
Now head of her own public relations firm, Rise Strategies, from 2011 to 2015, Tarrah was right in the middle of everything Chicago. And she appreciated her responsibility to Chicago.