Lori Elaine Lightfoot is an American attorney and politician who serves as the 56th mayor of Chicago. She is the first openly lesbian African-American woman to be elected mayor of a major city in the United States. Lightfoot was born in Massillon, Ohio, and grew up in a mostly white neighborhood on the west side of the city.
About Lori Lightfoot in brief
Lori Elaine Lightfoot is an American attorney and politician who serves as the 56th mayor of Chicago. She is the first openly lesbian African-American woman to be elected mayor of a major city in the United States. Lightfoot ran for Mayor of Chicago in 2019, advancing to a runoff election against Toni Preckwinkle in the February 2019 election. She has served as mayor since 2019, and is a member of the Democratic Party. She was born in Massillon, Ohio, and grew up in a mostly white neighborhood on the west side of the city. She pursued seven different types of employment to pay for her education, including working as a resident assistant and as a cook for the school’s football team. While in high school, Lightfoot helped organize a boycott of her school’s lunch program over the quality of its pizza. She graduated from the University of Chicago Law School, where she was awarded a full scholarship. She then became a practicing attorney at the Mayer Brown law firm, serving a wide cross-section of clients. In 2002 she was appointed chief of the Chicago Police Department Office of Professional Standards, a now-defunct governmental oversight group. In the position, she was in charge of investigating possible cases of police misconduct, including police shootings of civilians. She went against Police orthodoxy by recommending the firing of officer Alvin Weems, who shot and killed an unarmed man, Michael Pleasance, even after video evidence revealed the initial claims were not true. In 1999, Light foot was issued a warning for misconduct by judge Richard Posner in a case in which she was found by the U.S.
Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit to have misled a United States Circuit Judge regarding a suspect’s whereabouts, making it impossible for the judge to stay the suspect’s extradition to Norway. She also served as a clerk for Justice Charles Levin of the Michigan Supreme Court, and helped to prosecute those accused of federal crimes, including drug crimes. She helped to convict alderman Virgil Jones, who was convicted in Operation Silver Shovel, an FBI investigation into Chicago corruption. During her mayoral campaign, she cited several reasons for entering public service, including a desire to represent the African- American community, a sense of injustice based on the murder of a family member by a Ku Klux Klan member in the 1920s, and her older brother’s struggles with the law. She said she chose to attend law school not because of her brother’s legal troubles, but because she wanted a job that offered financial independence. In 2013, her high school alumni association named her a “Distinguished Citizen’s” in 2013. She was elected high school class president three times, and was a trumpet player in the school band, point guard on the basketball team, yearbook editor, and Pep Club member. She held the position of administrator of two police groups, including Chicago Police Superintendent Terry Hill and Chicago Police Accountability Task Force. Lightfoot also worked for Congress members Ralph Regula and Barbara Mikulski.