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Bridgeport, Chinatown, McKinley Park

Ald. Nicole Lee Headed For A Runoff Against Cop Anthony Ciaravino In Bridgeport’s 11th Ward

Lee, who was appointed to the seat last year and received backing from the powerful Daley family, faced a crowded field to win her first full term.

Chicago Police officer Anthony Ciaravino will be heading into a runoff against incumbent Ald. Nicole Lee for the 11th Ward.
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BRIDGEPORT — Ald. Nicole Lee (11th) likely will face a runoff in a bid to keep her seat.

Lee and police officer Anthony Ciaravino led the crowded field with 30.5 and 30.4 percent of the vote respectively with all precincts reporting, setting up an April 4 head-to-head contest.

Challenger Don Don landed 19.8 percent of the vote, while Ambria Taylor had 12.6 percent, Elvira “Vira” Jimenez had 2.9 percent, Froylan “Froy” Jimenez had 2.4 percent and Steve Demitro had 1.4 percent.

Candidates needed to secure at least 50 percent of the vote to avoid a runoff.

The 11th ward includes parts of Canaryville, Chinatown, Bridgeport, McKinley Park and Armour Square.

Speaking to Block Club from her campaign party, Lee praised her dozens of staffers and volunteers and said she was prepared for this outcome.

“There were seven candidates in the race so we always knew that a runoff was going to be likely, so here’s where we dig in and build a bigger coalition,” Lee said.

Lee, the city’s first Chinese American alderperson, was appointed to her post by Mayor Lori Lightfoot in March 2022. She replaced Patrick Daley Thompson after a federal tax fraud conviction forced him to resign. The former United Airlines executive is the daughter of Gene Lee, who served under Richard M. Daley as his Deputy Chief of Staff before he was convicted of embezzlement in 2014.

Challengers Ciaravino, Taylor, Demitro, Don and Elvira Jimenez and Froylan Jimenez sought to deny Lee her first full term, some seeing her appointment as “politics as usual.”

That, along with education and public safety were top of mind for the seven candidates when they met at an aldermanic forum last month. While they differed on how to address crime in the ward, all agreed that a new community high school is needed.

Lee told Block Club last year that the proposed Near South Side high school was a top priority for her office, as the burgeoning community had suffered from what she referred to as a “high school desert.”

Ciaravino grew up in the 11th Ward, where the married father of three has been involved in the community for over 30 years, according to his campaign website.

A police instructor, Ciaravino trains officers on how to handle mental health situations and is a member of Chicago’s Alternative Policing Strategy. The Citizens Police Data Project shows he has received a number of awards throughout his career and 10 civilian complaints, one marked “sustained.”

Ciarvino’s platform focuses on public safety, economic development and strengthening city services, which includes launching a senior citizen ambassador program and leveraging social media to provide ward updates and job links.

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