Session Type(s): Panel
Starts: Saturday, Jul. 15 9:00 AM (Central)
Ends: Saturday, Jul. 15 10:15 AM (Central)
Room: Salon C-5/6
In the fall of 2022, Black labor leader and Cook County Commissioner Brandon Johnson was polling at just 3%, while Rahm Emanuel’s former campaign manager had just launched a super PAC to defeat the most progressive incumbents in City Council. Six months later, Brandon Johnson is now Mayor of Chicago, the progressive incumbents defeated their challengers, and the Progressive and Socialist Caucuses are larger than ever.
How did we do it? This panel will tell the story of what the Chicago Sun-Times called Brandon Johnson’s “ace in the hole”: a coordinated field program, made up of a slate of down-ballot candidates campaigning for Johnson, powered by volunteers from labor, community, and political organizations, and animated by a bold vision for Chicago.
Come hear from the organizers, campaigners, and candidates behind the strategy of running as a slate behind an unapologetically progressive platform–the political risk involved, the grassroots organizing required, the lessons learned, and the powerful potential for Chicago and around the country.
Sandra was born and raised on the Northwest side of Chicago. She first started organizing in college, fighting for grants for undocumented students. After graduating college, Sandra found United Neighbors of the 35th Ward, a local Independent Political Organization.
In 2022, she became chair of United Neighbors of the 35th Ward and helped lead the field efforts in the 35th ward for Delia Ramirez, Anthony Joel Quezada, Dan Pogorzelski, Cristina Pacione- Zayas, Omar Aquino, Will Guzzardi and Lilian Jimenez. The successful field operation in 2022 helped strengthen their strategy that then helped elect Brandon Johnson for Mayor.