Mayor Emanuel Appoints HACIA Executive Director to CDC


Chicago Bear among picks for library board

By John Byrne Tribune reporter

5:10 p.m. CDT, July 27, 2011

Mayor Rahm Emanuel has named Chicago Bears defensive end Israel Idonije to the Chicago Public Library Board of Directors, part of the latest round of appointments as he works to fill out membership on various public bodies.

In a news release, Emanuel cited Idonije’s work to promote education through his non-profit Israel Idonije Foundation.

Josephine Gomez, school director at Hector P. Garcia, M.D. High School, part of the United Neighborhood Organization’s system of charter schools, was also named by Emanuel to the library board.

He also named three new members to the Community Development Commission, including Jorge Perez, executive director of the Hispanic American Construction Industry Association. Perez previously was a top official at the CTA and a deputy commissioner in the city Department of Aviation. He served on Emanuel’s transition team.

Joining Perez will be Roxanne Ward — who formerly served as first assistant general counsel at the Chicago Park District and as a member of the Chicago Board of Education — and realtor Robert Buford.

The mayor reappointed to the commission consultant Marina Carrott.

Library board member Cristina Benitez — Director of Latino Media and Communication at DePaul University — will return to that body, along with Ardmore Associates LLC President Cherryl Thomas and banker Julia Zhu, according to the mayor’s office.

Emanuel made the announcements the same day he announced he would look into reducing the stipends paid to people serving on government boards and commissions.


New Emanuel Picks Tied to Clouted Group

by DAN MIHALOPOULOS | Jul 27, 2011

Two of Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s new city board appointees have close ties to Emanuel’s campaign co-chairman Juan Rangel.

In a statement Wednesday, Emanuel announced five appointments to the public library system’s board and three picks for the city’s Community Development Commission.

Among the new library board members is Josephine Gomez, who is director of a high school run by the United Neighborhood Organization, a politically influential Latino group led by Rangel.

The Emanuel appointees to the CDC include Jorge Perez, a graduate of UNO’s Metropolitan Leadership Institute. Perez is the executive director of the Hispanic American Construction Industry Association and used to work for the Chicago Transit Authority and for the city’s Aviation Department.

When he was a deputy commissioner in Aviation, Perez was one of seven city officials on a panel that favored hiring a new contractor to operate concessions at O’Hare International Airport’s Terminal 5. Aldermen are expected to vote on the concessions deal, which Emanuel supports, at Thursday’s City Council meeting.

Rangel himself was recently appointed by the new mayor to the Public Buildings Commission, the panel that oversees the construction of schools, libraries and other public buildings across Cook County.

Rangel was an early and vocal supporter of Emanuel’s mayoral bid, backing him over two high-profile Hispanic politicians who also were running to succeed retiring Mayor Richard M. Daley.

Other Emanuel nominees for the library board included Chicago Bears defensive end Israel Idonije.

Earlier Wednesday, Emanuel said he instructed his aides to review the stipends paid to board members. His stated goal was to cut the $621,000 annual cost for the stipends by 50 percent