HUMBOLDT PARK — Longtime Humboldt Park resident and current 26th Ward Democratic Committeeperson Angee Gonzalez Rodriguez is running for the neighborhood’s City Council seat, setting up another possible challenger for veteran Ald. Roberto Maldonado.
Gonzalez Rodriguez announced her candidacy for 26th Ward alderperson Thursday.
The 26th Ward, which includes Humboldt Park and parts of Logan Square, West Humboldt Park, Hermosa and West Town, has been “experiencing population shifts and real estate development,” and residents “feel ignored,” Gonzalez Rodriguez’s campaign said in a news release.
“The Ward lacks attention, care, and the presence of capable leadership. A focus of Angee Gonzalez Rodriguez is to represent all members of the Ward and encourage the economic growth, assure the safety of all families, and improve all city services.”
Gonzalez Rodriguez is a medical professional who was born in Villalba, Puerto Rico but has lived in Humboldt Park since 1974. She is a graduate of Chicago Public Schools and has a master’s degree in legal studies, according to the release.
This isn’t the first time Gonzalez Rodriguez has run for 26th Ward alderperson. She also ran in 2018, but was edged out by challengers. Maldonado narrowly won that election, beating out health clinic director Theresa Siaw and developer David Herrera.
But Gonzalez Rodriguez emerged victorious in the 26th Ward Democratic Committeeperson election in 2020, signaling a potential challenge in future elections. Most alderpeople are also elected committeepeople for their respective wards.
Maldonado has held his 26th Ward seat since 2009, when he was appointed by then-Mayor Richard M. Daley to replace Billy Ocasio. Before becoming alderperson, Maldonado served as a Cook County Board member. When he was younger, he worked as a psychologist for Chicago Public Schools and ran a mortgage-banking firm.
In recent months, rumors have swirled that Maldonado is retiring, especially after he listed his $2.4 million Humboldt Park house for sale this spring. But Maldonado has said those rumors are untrue and he plans to run for reelection.
“In this era of fake news and misinformation, how can you be surprised about comments and made up stories like those?” Maldonado told Block Club in March.
Maldonado’s chief of staff didn’t respond to a request for comment Friday.
Gonzalez Rodriguez is the second candidate to announce a run for 26th Ward alderperson. Popular DJ Julian “Jumpin'” Perez also is running for Humboldt Park’s top political position.
RELATED: Popular DJ Julian ‘Jumpin’ Perez Running For Alderman In 26th Ward
Recent campaign finance records show that Maldonado had $34,808.20 on hand in his “Citizens for Maldonado” campaign chest as of June 30 and $69,077.74 in his “26th Ward Democratic Organization” account, which was set up to support his work as committeeman though he no longer holds that role.
By comparison, Perez had $13,138.12 in his “Friends of Julian Perez” account as of the same time period, and Friends for Angee Gonzalez Rodriguez” has $494.38, according to records.
The election is set for Feb. 28.
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