Giannoulias’ first big hires

Giannoulias’ first big hires

With help from Olivia Olander

Happy Thursday, Illinois. Enjoy the warmth. Friday starts a streak of below-freezing temps.

Programming note: Playbook wraps up Friday before taking some down time until Jan. 3.

Secretary of State-elect Alexi Giannoulias is naming campaign manager Hanah Jubeh and political strategist Scott Burnham, as deputy secretaries of state in his new administration.

High praise: “There are no two people more talented and dedicated to ensuring the success of the secretary of state’s office and committed to serving the people of Illinois than Hanah and Scott,” Giannoulias said in a statement to Playbook.

Jubeh is credited with managing Giannoulias’ successful campaign over the finish line last month, including through a fierce primary against Chicago City Clerk Anna Valencia. Now, Jubeh is divesting herself from the P2 Consulting practice that she’s run for 15 years.

It’s a first: Jubeh’s appointment marks the first time a woman or person of color will hold the title in the office. Before political consulting, Jubeh was political affairs director for the Chicago Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO.

For Burnham, the new assignment is familiar territory. He previously served as Giannoulias’ communications director during his term as Illinois state treasurer in 2007 and then for Giannoulias’ 2010 campaign for U.S. Senate. Since then, Burnham, a former political reporter, has worked as a senior strategist at the Serafin & Associates public affairs firm. He specialized in government relations and crisis communications.

MONEY, TRAIN: Wednesday was a big day for Chicago, and maybe even bigger for Mayor Lori Lightfoot.

After 30 years of trying, the Chicago City Council gave a nod to establishing a casino in the city. The council approved zoning for Bally’s to build a $1.7 billion casino in the city’s River West neighborhood at Chicago Avenue and Halsted Street.

In addition, the council approved a payment plan to extend the Red Line south to 130th Street — via revenue from a special taxing district that runs through the South Side. It’s a project also decades in the making. More on that from Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman.

Big wins for da mayor: Both projects have a few more hurdles, but for Lightfoot, “the votes on the casino and Red Line extension mark political victories she will likely tout on the campaign trail as she seeks reelection,” report the Tribune’s Alice Yin and Gregory Pratt.

If you’re Bally’s board chair Soo Kim, Playbook wants to hear how you celebrated Wednesday’s City Council vote. Email [email protected].

At Vivid Seats Headquarters at 10:30 a.m. for the company’s new HQ. — At IBEW Local 134 on King Drive at 1 p.m. to celebrate passage of the Workers’ Rights Amendment at the Illinois AFL-CIO & Chicago Federation of Labor’s Workers’ Rights Victory Celebration and Holiday Luncheon.

No official public events.

In the Cook County Building at 10 a.m. to preside over a Cook County Board meeting.

Have a news tip, suggestion, birthday, anniversary, new job, or any other nugget for Playbook? I’d like to hear from you: [email protected]

How liberal is the Illinois Legislature? Not as much as you’d think: A study by a conservative think tank found that Illinois “ranked as the 36th-most conservative state legislature, or the 15th-most liberal if approaching from the other direction. In 2021, state lawmakers voted the conservative position 37 percent of the time, according to the study.” Lee Enterprises’ Brendan Moore reports.

10 New Illinois Laws Taking Effect in 2023, via NBC 5

Work resumes on Springfield’s historic Ferguson building, by Illinois Times’ Dean Olsen

— GENTLEMAN OF LEISURE: Secretary of State Jesse White was feted at a huge event at the Sheraton in Chicago on Thursday evening to mark his retirement after 24 years. Some 1,100 guests were in attendance, and the standing ovations were frequent.

White was introduced by his successor, Alexi Giannoulias. Gov. JB Pritzker’s speech was described both as “thoughtful” and “powerful." And videos helped tell the story of White’s long career, even going back to his baseball days.

White’s message to the guests: “Do something good for someone everyday.”

Some of the other speakers included Ald. Walter Burnett (27th), Connie Peyton, the widow of Bears’ great Walter Peyton, who talked about organ donations and the registry that the SOS office oversees. Sens. Dick Durbin and Tammy Duckworth spoke via video. Broadcaster Lou Canellis moderated. The Jesse White Tumblers performed, of course. And guests danced to the Gentlemen of Leisure Band.

— Mayor Lori Lightfoot has been endorsed by Ald. Chris Taliaferro (29th) in her reelection bid. Taliaferro is former Chicago police sergeant and chair of the City Council’s Public Safety Committee. “I’ve worked closely with Mayor Lightfoot and seen her commitment to reducing violence and building economic progress on the West Side first hand,” Taliaferro said in a statement. He also praised her for keeping a “core campaign promise” by agreeing to a compromise on the civilian-led police oversight body.

— Prentice C. Butler, who has served as policy director and chief of staff to Ald. Sophia King, is being endorsed by her. King isn’t seeking reelection as she’s running for mayor. In a statement, King described Butler as “steadfast in serving the 4th Ward” throughout the pandemic.

— Ald. Byron Sigcho-Lopez (25th) has been endorsed in his reelection bid by state Rep. Lakesia Collins.

The crypto scandal continues. Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s mayoral opponents questioned Wednesday why she attended the groundbreaking earlier this year for the Chicago headquarters of FTX, which has since filed for bankruptcy. Its founder, Samuel Bankman-Fried, has been charged with fraud, money laundering and campaign finance violations. Kam Buckner, a state representative and mayoral candidate, said Lightfoot “owes this entire city an explanation about her relationship with Bankman-Fried.”

Lightfoot’s response: “I have no connection to them, and I didn’t take any money,” she said at an unrelated press conference, referring to a $200,000 independent expenditure made to Congressman Jesus “Chuy” Garcia. Lightfoot said given Garcia has been called “the frontrunner” in the mayor’s race, “it’s fair game to ask him questions” about his connections to an “alleged fraudster.”

Garcia campaign manager Gisel Aceves responded. “We’ve answered those questions. She’s the mayor. She proclaimed ‘the sky’s the limit’ for FTX U.S. as the company touted tying programs designed to keep people out of poverty to volatile funding. Mayors who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones," Aceves said in a statement.

Ald. Anabel Abarca sworn in to lead Southwest Side’s 12th Ward, by Block Club’s Madison Savedra

Why not use Covid-19 relief money to fund property tax loans for struggling Chicagoans, aldermen propose, by Tribune’s A.D. Quig and Alice Yin

Chicago aldermen approve $8M toward controversial $150M high school on Near South Side, by Chalkbeat’s Mauricio Peña

City picks short list of developers for Woodlawn site — and disgraced Ald. Willie Cochran weighs in, by Block Club’s Maxwell Evans

Blocking bike lanes could get you a $250 ticket — or towed — under a new city ordinance, by Block Club’s Alex V. Hernandez

Bears propose PILOT financing to help them land at Arlington, but idea is already experiencing turbulence, by Daily Herald’s Christopher Placek

South suburban mayors, U.S. officials discuss water infrastructure problems, by Sun-Times’ Emmanuel Camarillo

In Cook County, Black youth make up 70 percent of the foster care system. Advocates say more support is needed after they age out, by Medill School of Journalism and WTTW

Man who straw-purchased gun used to kill Chicago police Officer Ella French sentenced to 2 1/2 years in federal prison, by Tribune’s Jason Meisner and Paige Fry

Metra to rebuild three Electric Line stations on South Side, by Sun-Times’ David Struett

CTA and Pace to issue shared passes beginning next year, by Sun-Times’ Mitch Dudek

Illinois lobbyists’ Third House holiday celebration returned Wednesday. The event at the Hilton on Michigan Avenue featured the Jesse White Tumblers and the grandchildren of Third House Speaker and lobbyist Dave Sullivan joining in on the gymnastics. Attending along with White were Attorney General Kwame Raoul, Illinois Senate President Don Harmon, Illinois Senate Minority Leader Dan McConchie and Illinois House Minority Leader-elect Tony McCombie. Illinois Manufacturers’ Association’s Mark Denzler was there, too. He’s the upcoming Third House speaker. State Treasurer Mike Frerichs paid tribute to Sen. Scott Bennett, who died last week.

We asked what the craftiest thing you ever made for the holidays:

Enza Raineri made good use of her son’s “hundreds of hot wheels cars one year” by making a hot wheel Christmas tree.

Robert Christie was 9 when he made an abstract art piece with flat toothpicks that stood about 10 inches tall and gave it to his grandmother for Christmas.

Marilynn Miller makes tree ornaments of sequins and beads. “My best is a pink bell with lots of pearls,” she said.

Angela Peters Murphy has been known to elaborately decorate her holiday table.

Phil Zeni made Christmas tree ornaments from Meadow Gold dairy bottle caps when he was a boy.

What’s the main course of your holiday meal? Email [email protected]

— SCORE: Republican Congressman Darin LaHood is headed to Qatar as part of the Presidential Delegation to the FIFA World Cup for closing ceremonies, the White House announced Wednesday. LaHood is co-chair of the Congressional Soccer Caucus.

DeSantis builds his conservative resume as Trump flounders, by POLITICO’s Gary Fineout

House OKs stopgap funding fix with broader deal still under wraps, by POLITICO’s Caitlin Emma, Nicholas Wu and Marianne LeVine

Come on down? House GOP weighs the right price to topple a speaker, by POLITICO’s Jordain Carney and Olivia Beavers

— Future looks bright: Illinois Women’s Institute for Leadership Training Academy has announced its Class of 2023. It includes: Teamsters’ business agent Lisa Badger, IDPH regional health officer Chaundra Bishop, appellate court attorney Marcy Cascio-Hale, Lake Bluff trustee Taryn S. Fisher, Mano a Mano community building director Celeste Flores, ICJIA chief programs officer Doresah A. Ford-Bey, deputy chief of staff to Illinois Lt. Gov. Janelle Gurnsey, chief of staff to a Cook County commissioner Julie Kaviar, NIU instructor Linh Nguyen, Thornton Township community relations manager Micaela Smith, Our Common Ground board secretary Elisabeth Ward and Wicker Park Inn owner Laura Yepez. More on their selection here.

— Arthur Zayas Miller has been named board chair of the Illinois Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Former Chair Juan Gaytan has stepped down after serving for more than five years. In his day job, Miller is president and CEO of MZI Group telecom company.

— Lisa Duarte has been appointed to the board of directors of Latino Victory Project. She’s a partner at Croke, Fairchild, Duarte & Beres in Chicago.

Preckwinkle names new top financial aide, administrative chief:Tanya Anthony and Zahra Ali will be taking over the roles, respectively. by Crain’s Greg Hinz.

— Brian Bernardoni has been promoted to chief strategy officer at Strategia Consulting and former CBS 2’s Rob Johnson has joined the firm as a senior strategist.

— Lonnie Stephenson is retiring Jan. 4 as president of Electrical Workers (IBEW) International President. He’s had a nearly five-decade career with the union. Secretary-Treasurer Kenneth Cooper becomes the new president.

WEDNESDAY’s ANSWER: Congrats to John Mark Hansen for correctly answering that Ignacy Jan Paderewski was the pianist and composer who performed 65 concerts in Chicago between 1892 and 1939.

TODAY’s QUESTION: Who is the famous 19th-century statesman whose estate is the namesake of Ashland Avenue? Email [email protected]

Cook County Judge Perla Tirado, public affairs entrepreneur Dave Lundy, Strategia Consulting CEO Lissa Druss, Cameo CEO Steven Galanis, Norwood Park civic leader Frank Avino, advertising veteran Ben Counts, Chicago–Kent College of Law professor Richard Kling and veteran corporate PR exec Ron Culp.



December 15, 2022 at 07:31AM

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