Jesse Sharkey Assumes Duties of CTU President After Lewis Health Concerns - NBC Chicago
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Jesse Sharkey Assumes Duties of CTU President After Lewis Health Concerns

Sharkey said Lewis has a "serious illness" but that her surgery was successful



    CTU: Karen Lewis Has "Serious Illness"

    10/9/2014: The Chicago Teachers Union gives the first official word of Karen Lewis' illness and surgery. Natalie Martinez reports. (Published Thursday, Oct. 9, 2014)

    The Chicago Teachers Union announced Thursday that Vice President Jesse Sharkey will assume the duties of CTU President following Karen Lewis' emergency surgery Wednesday.

    Sharkey, in a press conference Thursday afternoon, would not offer any information surrounding Lewis' condition, but said she has a "serious illness" and her surgery was successful.

    "Out of respect to President Lewis’ wishes, the wishes of her family, and their privacy, we cannot provide details on her condition," the CTU said in a statement.

    It remains unclear if the health concerns will interfere with Lewis' potential run for mayor.

    Jesse Sharkey Takes Over for Karen Lewis

    [CHI] Jesse Sharkey Takes Over for Karen Lewis
    10/9/2014: Sharkey named interim president of the Chicago Teachers Union while Karen Lewis recovers from emergency surgery from an unknown illness.
    (Published Thursday, Oct. 9, 2014)

    Lewis was taken by ambulance to Northwestern Hospital Sunday night after attending a campaign event.

    A source insists Lewis did not suffer a stroke, and while it's not clear what kind of emergency surgery she had, NBC 5 was told it was not heart surgery or related to her weight loss surgery.

    “Karen Lewis is a passionate advocate for her beliefs and has always been willing to speak up for her view of what's best -- not only for the teachers that she represents, but also for issues critical to the future of our city," Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a statement Thursday. "Along with all Chicagoans, we will keep Karen and her family in our thoughts and prayers, and we hope to see her on her feet very soon.”