Get to Know Your Ward: 12th Ward

NBC Chicago and Ward Room bring you profiles on all 50 wards this election season. As candidates face off in the Feb. 24 election, they are also facing a new ward map, which takes effect when the winners assume office.

In this profile, learn all about the 12th ward, which covers parts of McKinley Park, Brighton Park and South Lawndale (Little Village).


  • Total Population: 52,235
  • White: 8.65 percent
  • Black: 2.17 percent
  • Hispanic: 81.51 percent
  • Asian: 7.25 percent (Source: WBEZ

Current Alderman: George A. Cardenas

Ward Committeemen: Antonio Munoz (democratic committeeman), Jose Guererro (republican committeeman) and Alberto Bocanegra, Jr. (Green Party committeeman)

Who Else is Running: Pete DeMay (removed)

Adjectives that Describe the Ward: Family-oriented, blue-collar

Predominant Economic Engine: Local restaurants and businesses. A hospital -- St. Anthony Hospital -- is also located in this ward.

Where People Eat: Restaurants include New Archview Restaurant, Falco's Pizza and Pasta, Gold Standard Baking and several Mexican restaurants.

Where People Drink: Bars include Volkan, Taverna Sports Bar and Tri M Out Lounge. There are not many bars in this ward.

Where People Pray: Churches include Our Lady of Tepeyac, St. Pancratius Church, Assumption Church BVM and St. Peter and Paul Church.

How the Ward Typically Votes: George Cardenas has been alderman of the 12th ward since 2003. In 2007, he won 59 percent of the vote, defeating Carina Sanchez (28 percent) and four other challengers. In 2011, Cardenas won 55 percent of the vote, defeating Jose Guereca (19 percent) and three other challengers.

Prominent Landmark: Little Village Arch and clocktower

Resident's Voice: Michael Falco, owner of Falco's Pizza, said the ward needs greater police presence and more community involvement.

Ward Expert: Patrick Brosnan, director of the Brighton Park Neighborhood Council

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