African-American Leaders Rally Behind Giannoulias for Secretary of State
Several Black elected officials – including state legislators, mayors and committeepersons – announced their support today for Democrat Alexi Giannoulias in the race for Illinois Secretary of State.
The elected officials from Chicago’s South Side and south suburbs that endorsed Giannoulias include: Hazel Crest Mayor and Bremen Township Democratic Committeeperson Vernard Alsberry; Alderperson Anthony Beale (9th Ward); Matteson Mayor Sheila Chalmers-Currin; State Rep. Will Davis (D-30); State Sen. Emil Jones III (D-14); Calumet City Mayor and State Rep. Thaddeus Jones (D-29); Rich Township Supervisor and Committeeperson Calvin Jordan; State Rep. Debbie Meyers-Martin (D-38); State Rep. Rita Mayfield (D-60); State Rep. Curtis Tarver II (D-25); and Bloom Township Committeeperson Lori Wilcox.
“As we continue to address issues of equity, increase economic opportunity and achieve social justice, it is essential that we have leaders – like Alexi – who are not afraid to speak out and challenge unfairness and discrimination,” said Rich Township Supervisor and Committeeperson Calvin Jordan. “Alexi has supported our values throughout the years and is dedicated to protecting the rights that we all hold dear.”
“We are proud to endorse Alexi because we know he’s committed to enfranchising more voters and making sure the right to vote is protected to ensure everyone’s voices are heard,” said Bloom Township Committeeperson Lori Wilcox. “His leadership, his experience and his understanding of how to get things done along with his desire to fight for those left behind is needed now more than ever.”
“Alexi’s policies for Secretary of State mean increasing opportunity for diverse businesses to secure state contracts, equipping our libraries with more resources to offer more learning for our children, and strengthening the office’s Securities Division to crack down on those who prey on vulnerable citizens for financial gain,” said Hazel Crest Mayor and Bremen Township Democratic Committeeperson Vernard Alsberry. “We’re proud to support Alexi who will build on Jesse White’s remarkable legacy.”
“I’m honored to have earned the support of these strong leaders who are fighting for more opportunity in Illinois,” Giannoulias said. “They represent progressive voices who are committed to fighting on behalf of the working families and improving the lives of Illinoisians. We are working hard on this campaign to ensure that people come before politics in Springfield, and I am grateful that these leaders are standing behind our campaign and supporting our vision for a better Illinois.”
Giannoulias served as State Treasurer from 2007 to 2011. During that time, the State Treasurer’s Office achieved full “parity,” for the first time that meant the staff fully reflected the population of the state. He also appointed now Congresswoman and Democratic Party of Illinois Chair Robin Kelly as his chief of staff – the first African American to hold that position in a constitutional office.
In addition, Giannoulias also: implemented policies requiring that state banks sign community reinvestment pledges before receiving state deposits; removed barriers for disadvantaged families to open bank accounts in Illinois; increased community and economic development in minority communities through state “linked deposits” at below market rates; launched the nation’s first-ever female- and minority-owned investment option offered through a state-sponsored college savings plan; and instituted the Finally Home program enabled homeowners to refinance their mortgages before they miss a payment, preventing foreclosures.