Friday, May 13, 2011

From Ald. Shiller: "Thank You, 46th Ward!"

An email blast from the outgoing alderman:

Dear Friends,

photo courtesy
of TimeOut Chicago
As you know, after 24 years as alderman of the 46th ward, I am retiring. I am writing to express my appreciation for your support and hard work throughout the years as we worked together to improve the 46th ward.

We have come a long way. Together we have improved safety, we have created a lasting legacy of development without displacement, improved our schools, our infrastructure and our parks, and most importantly together we have created a socially and economically vibrant and diverse community. I am most proud of my achievements in tripling the City's funding budget for HIV/AIDS victims and for developing the toughest stance on Apartheid that was ever written in the 90's, for my work on domestic violence issues and establishing 24 hour daycare for children, the Ruth Shriman House for senior living, the Wilson Yards Development and for welcoming Target as a neighbor and partner, and of course setting the bar for affordable housing in Chicago. Our schools and after school programs have seen remarkable changes and we now have a successful public high school modeled in Uptown. We have laid a strong foundation that will serve the future of the ward.

James Cappleman will be sworn in as the new alderman of the 46th Ward on Monday, May 16th. Our office teams have met several times to ensure a smooth transition. Initially, Alderman-Elect Cappleman's office will be at 4133 N. Broadway. Their phone number is 312-725-8683. Going forward, they're planning to establish their office at the 4544 N. Broadway location after it has been renovated.

I have to take a moment to thank my staff, my supporters and even my detractors for keeping me strong and steadfast to my guiding principles. I'm confident you will all act to keep the Fighting 46th Ward moving forward.

For those who may wish to contact me personally, please email me at:

Warm Regards,

Alderman Helen Shiller


  1. James is moving into Helen's office? Why am I just learning this now??

  2. Thank you, Helen Shiller, for finally retiring! Now let the clean-up begin.

    I didn't know James was moving into her old office space either...

  3. I am glad that the 46th ward office could acknowledge who the incoming Alderman is. But to end this letter with, "I'm confident you will all act to keep the Fighting 46th Ward moving forward," seems to be a really poor choice in words, given the ongoing violence. So is this supposed to be a tongue in cheek comment, does she still deny the violence takes place, or did it not even occur to her how poorly the word choice was? Or is she so bitter over being critiqued for her lack of community engagement, that she feels all conflict is still everyone else s issues and she is the victim?

  4. @CTA: I'm confused as well. At the BPN meeting we asked him about his office and he said he was still looking, but that the new location would be more central to the ward boundaries and would be handicapped accessible. I was hoping for his transition office since it's closer to the middle of the ward. ::disappointed::

  5. Is this the first time her *personal* e-mail address was revealed? Also find it in poor taste that she's going to continue to use the domain.

  6. She sounds more reasonable with each passing day...but that could just be due to the fact that I'm also more giddy with each passing day.

  7. And let's all sing together: NA NA NA NA, HEY HEY HEY GOOD BYE!!!!

  8. There is probably a lease on the current office of Shiller's and his was short term since it was his campaign office.

    No worries people it's all good.

  9. To everyone disappointed in James' choice to move into the same office, I think it's a great decision.

    While not the true center of the ward, it does seem to be a significant hub, arguably even the center of activity both good and bad. It is centrally located to 2 of the major grocery stores and the one major retailer we have in our community. Walking between these two areas I promise you, compared to Shiller's office the foot traffic in the area of the transition office pales in comparison. This combined with it's easy access to the redline and multiple bus lines honestly does make it the best area for our Alderman to be in order to be truly involved in improving our community especially when it comes to violence.

    James has made it clear he wants to engage withour community and that means being where they are. The transition office while not truly out of the way, ends up feeling a bit off the beaten path none-the-less.

    And let's be honest here, had Shiller, at some point in the last 5 years, moved her office down to where James' campaign/transition office is you can be sure all the anti-shiller people would have raised a ruckus as that area, I think it's fair to say, has not seen a fraction of the things that the existing office has. We (I have never been a Shiller supporter) would have said she was running from the problem and staying in the safer zones of the ward, like her home is too. (Don't get me wrong I know there are issues all over the ward, I'm not saying there aren't.) Granted, she sat like an ostriche with her head in the sand all the while she was there, but I think we all know James is not going to stand silent and pretend no violence occurs in any of our ward but especially in this volatile section.

  10. Thank you for your service Alderman Shiller.

    Take care and all the best!

  11. James should get a priest to exorcise the office.

  12. Thanks for your service!

    You seem like an nice person, even though your policies are a little dated and whacked.

  13. What a lovely farewell, and may I say I love the 'Rembrandtesque' Time Out photo.

    I wasn't privey to this 'email blast', buy I'm drawn to:
    "Together we have improved safety, we have created a lasting legacy of development without displacement, improved our schools, our infrastructure and our parks, and most importantly together we have created a socially and economically vibrant and diverse community."

    I looked for footnotes/statistics to back this up?

  14. One of Shiller's favorite national pols, Ronald Reagan, used to say "trust, but verify" regarding the Soviets and nuclear weapon reduction.

    When I see an official announcement from Alderman Cappleman that his office will moving to 4544 Broadway then I'll believe it.

  15. Poor IrishPrirate, what are you going to do, now that the bane of your existence is gone?


  16. "...improved safety..."? Seriously. Please Ms. Helen, explain the four gun shots I heard about 100 yards from my front door last night and tell me about how "safety" has been improved. And while you're at it, please address the two other instances of gun shots I've heard from my open bedroom window in middle of the night over the past two weeks. Good riddance.

  17. Keep on truckin', Helen, right the hell out of the 46th Ward.

  18. If I were James, I'd check that office for bed bugs.

  19. What's the old adage???? - "don't let the door kick ya in the ass on the way out...."

  20. Personally this sums up my thoughts at Shiller leaving office. Just put on your imagination caps and picture the gopher as Uptown and Shiller and her minions as Judge Small and Carl Spackler.

  21. ...(head shake)(eye roll)(grin) Here's a link to Brigham Young University's student campus ward #46 - complete with an audio version of their fight song, "The Fighting 46th Ward." Not saying that Shiller "borrowed" the idea...just amused at the "coincidence."

    BYU Fighting 46th Ward

    There are many things I will miss about Alderman Shiller. Her uncanny ability to do express the un-original in her own original way is definitely one.

  22. Isn't everyone at least happy a dreaded nail salon isn't opening in that location.
    It is just a building and Anditron made quite a few good points.

    Joking about this earlier I said:

    "well Kansas is the geographic center of the USA but you wouldn't put the White House there".

  23. From the grapevine, James is moving to her office because of the existing infrastructure with the communication lines from AT&T - these are necessary for a city office. Would take much longer to get this hooked up in his current office - maybe months. No conspiracy, just smart move economically.