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Nowotny running for alderman
by Andrew Davis
2010-04-14

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Don Nowotny, who is the 46th Ward superintendent for Chicago Streets and Sanitation, is running for the aldermanic seat currently held by Helen Shiller—giving the ward at least three openly gay candidates.

Nowotny told Windy City Times April 12 that he has filed a statement of organization, adding that he has organized the political-action committee Neighbors for Nowotny. When asked why he thinks the ward should have a new alderman, Nowotny responded, "I believe in a new direction, a new vision, for the 46th Ward. And I believe that, having worked as a ward superintendent for 16 years, I have worked worked with all the people in the ward, no matter who they supported or who they were. I've tried to make the ward a cleaner place. I've worked with block clubs and nonprofit organizations and even homeless people—and I feel that we can do more by bringing everybody together to discuss the issues of the ward and come up with some goals that we can all live with."

Nowotny is holding a kickoff event Tuesday, May 4, at European & U.S. Car Service, 4080 N. Broadway, at 6 p.m. He acknowledged that the venue is "unusual" but added that "one of my issues is that the 46th Ward is a desert for retail and businesses along the main streets. It's creeping up from Lake View and down from Andersonville but there isn't a whole lot in between. And European and U.S. Auto Service is a very successful business in the 46th Ward; I felt that having the kickoff there would be a good opportunity to show that I am supportive of economic development and safety.

Someone else who has thrown his hat into the ring is James Cappleman. In an e-mail to Windy City Times, Cappleman stated, "I'm running because I am the frontrunner and have the best chances of winning against Ald. Shiller should she decide to run for a sixth term. No other candidate has my campaign experience, my name recognition, and my record of service throughout the ward."

Others who are running include Gerald Farinas ( www.Chicago46.com ) , who is running on a "weed and seed" program that would "weed out" criminals and "seed" human-services programs, and police officer Michael Carroll ( www.Carroll46.com ) , who is completing his master's degree thesis in public policy and administration at Northwestern University. According to LakeEffectNews.com, Farinas is openly gay—which, including Nowotny and Cappleman, puts at least three out aldermanic candidates in this particular political race.

When asked how intense he expects this political race to be considering the number of people who have already declared their candidacies ( and that does not include Shiller, who has not yet expressed her intent to run ) , Nowotny said, "I think the 46th Ward has always been a closely watched and very intense election for alderman, and I think this one is going to live up to the history of the 46th Ward. I look forward to a good, clean, fair fight."

The aldermanic elections take place next year.


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