On Thursday, May 2, 2012, The District 39 Educational Foundation was proud to honor Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel as the recipient of the 2012 Distinguished Citizen Award. Over 200 friends and community members gathered at the Michigan Shores Club and celebrated Mayor Emanuel’s illustrious public service contributions. While last-minute scheduling changes kept Mayor Emanuel from attending the event, his parents, Dr. and Mrs. Emanuel, were pleased to accept the award on his behalf.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel grew up in Wilmette, where he attended District 39 schools. Rahm Emanuel was elected Mayor of Chicago on February 22, 2011 and was sworn in on May 16, 2011. A native of Chicago with three terms representing his North Side district in Congress, Rahm Emanuel is deeply rooted in the life of the city.
In his first months in office, Mayor Emanuel has announced the redeployment of over 1,000 officers to Chicago’s neighborhoods, secured more than 7,000 private-sector jobs for residents across the city, and initiated necessary reforms to ensure transparency and accountability for City government.
Previously, Mayor Emanuel served as the White House Chief of Staff in the administration of President Barack Obama, where he helped orchestrate the passage of key legislation including the economic Recovery Act, Wall Street reform, and health care reform – increasing access and decreasing costs for millions of Americans.
Prior to working in the administration, Mayor Emanuel served three terms in the House of Representatives representing Chicago’s 5th District. Emanuel was a fierce advocate for Chicago families, serving on the House Ways and Means Committee, which oversees taxes, trade, Social Security, and Medicare. He also served on the Subcommittees on Health and Select Revenue.
In addition to his legislative efforts, Emanuel worked hard to directly serve Chicagoans through “Congress on Your Corner,” in which he and his staff set up shop in local grocery stores to talk with residents about their needs. During tax season, he provided free tax preparation and college financial aid clinics.
Before becoming a member of Congress, Mayor Emanuel served in the Clinton White House where he helped pass the COPS initiative, which added 100,000 police officers to neighborhoods around the country. He began his career at Illinois Public Action, the state’s largest public interest organization.
Emanuel graduated from Sarah Lawrence College in 1981 and received a Master’s Degree in Speech and Communication from Northwestern University in 1985. Rahm is married to Amy Rule, and they have three children, Zach, Ilana, and Leah.