Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s Office would not release a list of people who applied to replace 4th Ward Ald. Will Burns on the Council to Aldertrack, but instead responded in an email, “Like vacancies that have happened in the past few years, we won’t be releasing a list of applicants’ names.”

The application deadline for those interested in applying to fill Ald. Will Burn’s vacancy on the City Council was last Friday. Mayor Rahm Emanuel would appoint the interim Alderman to fill a term until the Illinois municipal elections in March 2017, when a special election would be held for a two-year term.

Aldertrack has learned some names discussed by community leaders include:

  • Rev. Dr. L. Bernard Jakes, senior pastor of the West Point Ministry Baptist Church.

  • Ghian Foreman, Executive Director of the Greater Southwest Development Corporation, a community development agency, and a member of the city’s Police Board. Foreman was appointed to the Police Board in 2010 by then-Mayor Richard M. Daley.

  • Bernita Johnson-Gabriel, Executive Director of the Quad Communities Development Corporation (QCDC), “a non-profit organization focused on economic development, education, and employment in the south lakefront communities of North Kenwood, Oakland, Douglas, and Grand Boulevard.” QCDC oversees two Special Service Areas in the 4th Ward: SSA #54 Bronzeville and SSA #47 Cottage Grove/47th St.

  • Tracey Bey, who founded her own mortgage brokerage firm, Bey Financial Corporation, and ran for alderman against Burns in the most recent election, garnering 25% of the vote.

A five-member task force appointed by the Mayor will review the applications submitted and interview candidates. Following their review, the task force will submit the names of three finalists to the Mayor. Emanuel will announce his final pick on April 29, and the new alderman will be sworn in at the May 18th City Council meeting.