Bridget Gainer

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Bridget Gainer

Cook County, 9th District Commissioner (2009-)

Starting as a budget analyst for Mayor Richard M. Daley, Gainer was the sort of bright, relatively-apolitical technocrat the Daley Administration excelled at producing, where she moved through a number of positions, ending up as an administrator in the Chicago Parks District. After a City Hall stay, Gainer follow the path of many Daley administrators and moved to [Aon North America], a large re-insurance company based in Chicago and run by close Daley friend Patrick Ryan.

Then, in 2009, Mike Quigley vacated his Cook County Board seat after winning a special election for Rahm Emanuel's Congressional seat. The open position would be filled by appointment by Ward Democratic Committeemen. The word from Mayor Daley's office: the job should go to Bridget Gainor.

The move was a surprise, since Gainor, once a respected City Hall administrator, had almost no political resume, never knocked on doors for candidates and had barely contributed to campaign fundraising. But, the night of the Committeeman vote, between Mike Quigley's chief of staff Kim Walz and Bridget Gainor, the Committeemen reportedly selected Gainor, hands down.

Gainor has continued in Quigley's footsteps, as a strong progressive voice against corruption and government inefficiency in County Government. She briefly considered running for mayor in 2011 when Daley hesitated running for another term, but quickly stopped circulating petitions as soon as it became clear he would run for reelection.

Important Political Events

  • 2009, Appointed Cook County Commissioner by Ward Committeeman, replacing Mike Quigley
  • 2010, Elected Cook County Commissioner unopposed