Letter to the editor

The following letter from 38th Ward candidate Heather Sattler was written in response to Russ Stewart’s Feb. 11 column on the aldermanic race:

Thank you for letting me set the record straight about my deep roots in the community and my qualifications as a candidate for alderman of the 38th Ward.

I live in a Portage Park bungalow with my son a few blocks from where my parents raised me. No matter where I lived or traveled, I was engaged in Portage Park: as the Executive Director of This Is ME, as the President of the Portage Park Center for the Arts, as a substitute teacher and volunteer at Our Lady of Victory school, for example.

I was 23 when I recognized a community need and began work to found This Is ME, Inc. My role in This Is ME has been recognized with awards from groups such as the American Association of University Women and the American Society for Public Administration. Before I left the organization in 2012, This Is ME served more than 800 girls at sites like the Irving Park YMCA, Merrimac Park, Portage Park School, Reinberg School, Portage Park Center for the Arts, and United in Faith Church.

Our programs were very low cost or free because I knew how to keep expenses down and find creative streams of revenue. And in my 2.5 years as Chief Operating Officer of the 100 Club of Chicago, we doubled our membership and budget, expanding services to families of first responders who lost their lives in the line of duty.

I have worked across all sectors — business, nonprofit and government — to tackle real issues. My qualifications and passion for the community are well-documented.

Heather Sattler