Ward Room
Covering Chicago's nine political influencers

Chicago City Council: Michele Smith

As a federal prosecutor, Smith weeded out political corruption. Now, she brings her reputation to the 43rd Ward.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    After coming up short in the 2007 race, Michele Smith edged Tim Egan in an April runoff for the 43rd Ward's seat. The former federal prosecutor replaced Vi Daley, who retired after 12 years as alderman. Her first political fight -- over the redevelopment of a Lincoln Park hospital -- ended in defeat.

    Background:
    A mother of one, Smith has lived in Lincoln Park since 1979 after graduating from University of Chicago. She worked at the U.S. Attorney's Office where she prosecuted over 400 narcotics, white-collar and political corruption cases. She ran for alderman in 2007 but could not unseat Daley.

    The Ward:
    The North Side ward stretches from Diversey to Divison, encompassing most of Lincoln Park. The ward includes DePaul University, Lincoln Park Zoo and hosts a slew of mixed business-residential neighborhoods.

    The Office:

    Smith made her name by exposing corruption in politics. As a prosecutor, she convicted former State Rep. Doug Huff for fraud, and she's now set out to bring more transparency and oversight to the city council. During the election, she spoke at length about her plans to address commercial and retail vacancies along Clark Street between Webster and Diversey Avenues.

    Committees:
    Rules and Ethics
    Economic, Capital and Technology
    Human Relations
    Special Events, Cultural Affairs and Recreation
    Transportation and Public Way
    Workforce Development and Audit