He was the go-between, a savvy and trusted insider who could segue from Republican governors to Democratic mayors and, with a minimum of partisan fuss, work out deals to expand McCormick Place, restructure the Regional Transportation Authority and revitalize Chicago’s tourism agency.
That was the job of Jim Reilly, who for the better part of three decades held key jobs at all of those agencies.
Reilly, 77, has died after a long illness, the Sun-Times and Tribune report.
"Jim Reilly was, I think, the most significant (Illinois) individual in the last 30 years, maybe 40, who wasn’t elected," says former Gov. Jim Edgar, for whom Reilly worked as chief of staff 1994-95. "He could walk with and get things done with Democrats and Republicans."
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April 4, 2022 at 11:08PM