Get to Know Your Ward: 3rd 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 3rd ward, which covers parts of the Near South Side, Hyde Park, Bronzeville, Fuller Park and Grand Boulevard.


  • Total population: 53,039
  • White: 22.42 percent
  • Black: 64.62 percent
  • Hispanic: 3.72 percent
  • Asian: 8 percent (Source: WBEZ)

Current alderman: Pat Dowell

Ward Committeemen: Pat Dowell (democratic committeeman) and Bobbie Johnson (republican committeeman)

Who Else is Running: Patricia Horton and Clarence Desmond Clemons (removed)

Adjectives that Describe the Ward: Historic, diverse

Predominant Economic Engine: Cultural and historical landmarks and institutions. Although located in a separate ward, the Museum Campus borders the east side of the 3rd ward.

Where People Eat: Restaurants include Pearl's Place, Baba's Famous Steak and Lemonade, Chicago Firehouse, Ameritalia, Flo & Santos, Tapas Valencia, Acadia and Chicago's Home of Chicken and Waffles.

Where People Drink: Bars include Wabash Tap, Velvet Lounge Chicago and The Shrine.

Where People Pray: Mt. Carmel Missionary Baptist Church, Progressive Baptist Church, St. Thomas Episcopal Church and Corpus Christi Catholic Church.

How the Ward Typically Votes: Pat Dowell was first elected in 2007 when she won 54 percent of the vote, defeating Dorothy Tillman in a runoff. Tillman had been alderman of this ward for 22 years prior to her defeat. In 2011, Dowell won 67 percent of the vote, defeating Ebony Tillman.

Landmark: Illinois Institute of Technology

Resident's Voice: Darrell Green, co-owner of Pearl's Place, a popular soul food restaurant in Bronzeville, says, "We want to see continued growth in terms of reviving the community through businesses." Green said he would like to see more support for local businesses and compared Bronzeville to Hyde Park, which has much more support. He also said that Bronzeville could use a "facelift."

Ward Expert: Ronnie Matthew Harris, a Bronzeville community organizer, third-generation Bronzeville resident and one of the developers of a FarmVille-like game called "Built It! Bronzeville"

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