Ald. Peter Braithwaite (2nd) announced as Monday night’s City Council meeting was ending that he plans to resign following the Council’s next meeting on July 11.
Braithwaite, who was appointed to the Council in 2011 following the resignation of Lionel Jean-Baptiste, went on to win elections to the 2nd Ward aldermanic post in 2013, 2017 and 2021.
That makes him the second-longest serving member on the nine-member Council.
In his resignation announcement, Braithwaite alluded to the death of his mother, Veronica Braithwaite, on May 21 at age 86, as having sparked a reassessment of his priorities.
Braithwaite also started a new job earlier this year as director of procurement, diversity and community engagement at Northwestern University.
Braithwaite becomes the second council member to resign since the April 2021 city election.
Ald. Cicely Fleming (9th) announced last December that she was resigning just a few months after starting her second term on the Council.
Her resignation also came shortly after the death of her mother.
Several council members appeared to be caught by surprise by Braithwaite’s announcement.
Ald. Jonathan Nieuwsma (4th) said he was apprehensive about what will happen next and that he “will be sorry to see you go.”
Ald. Eleanor Revelle (7th) said, “My heart sank as I heard your announcement.”
Daniel Biss,in his first term as mayor, said, “Whatever you want to say about this Council, experience is not our forte.” He added that Braithwaite “has been really helpful in providing that background” the newer members of the Council lacked.
Once Braithwaite’s successor is appointed by the mayor, six of the nine alderpersons will be in their first term on the Council.
The only more experienced members will be Ald. Melissa Wynne (3rd), first elected in 1997; Ald. Eleanor Revelle, first appointed in 2015, and Ald. Tom Suffredin (6th), first elected in 2017.