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Quinn hires fiery CTU spokesperson

Friday, Oct 25, 2013

* From NBC5

Governor Pat Quinn is bringing on a new member to his communications team.

Stephanie Gadlin will leave the Chicago Teachers Union where she served as spokesman to become the Senior Communications Manager for the governor’s office.

Brooke Anderson, Quinn’s Communications Director says Gadlin is “a dynamic communicator and we are really excited to have her on board.”

* The CTU, eh? A few Gadlin quotes

Some critics, like Stephanie Gadlin of the Chicago Teachers Union, say that Emanuel lost a lot of support after a record 50 school closings in June. The city said it could no longer afford to keep the schools open because they were low-performing and underutilized.

Many of the schools were located in predominantly African-American communities and bore the names of black icons like Benjamin Banneker, the self-educated astronomer; gospel singer Mahalia Jackson; and Daniel Hale Williams, the general surgeon.

“We don’t have many institutions, but we take great pride in our schools,” Gadlin, communications director at the teachers union, told The Root. “Now here comes Mr. Mayor shutting them down, and people are angry. The good news is that he has a black page in his 2015 campaign manual.”


“This board is a rubber stamp that acts at the behest of City Hall,” said CTU spokeswoman Stephanie Gadlin. “There may be some symbolic ‘no’ votes, to give an appearance that they are thinking independently. But make no mistake about this, they take their cues from the fifth floor of City Hall. Their own independent hearing officers have said 14 schools need to come off the list. What has been the mayor’s response? He’s not budging. Which means his board won’t either.”


Stephanie Gadlin, spokeswoman for the Chicago Teachers Unions, said union president Karen Lewis considers the mayor’s absence “cowardly.”

“Karen has said it’s cowardly to do this and shows a lack of leadership on behalf of the mayor,” Gadlin said.


CTU spokeswoman Stephanie Gadlin described the mayor’s collaboration with the Education Action Group Foundation as odd. “Their new video is little more than right-wing propaganda that contributes nothing to the education debate in our city,” she said.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - MrJM - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 2:18 pm:

    Note to self: Make macro for the phrase “Boy, that escalated quickly.”

    – MrJM

  2. - Empty Chair - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 2:26 pm:

    I think the important question to ask is: do the quotes reflect Stephanie’s style, or CTU/Karen Lewis’ approach to politics?

  3. - 47th Ward - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 2:26 pm:

    Why wouldn’t the campaing hire Gadlin instead of the state?

  4. - circularfiringsquad - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 2:30 pm:

    Why waste campaig cash when the govt can pay?
    Cant wait to see how this makes pension reform a done deal

  5. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 2:31 pm:

    Rahm backs Quinn, Quinn hires CTU Spokesman.


  6. - hisgirlfriday - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 2:33 pm:

    If he’s gonna go full blown populist against Rahm-Rauner why not support an elected CPS board? C’mon, Pat. You know you wanna.

    BTW, is there any comprehensive list of schools closed vs schools opened by CPS in the last 10 years or so? Its one thing when community heroes like Mahalia Jackson get displaced by moneybags benefactors whose egos (similar to previous Gilded Age gentry) require that as many things say Rauner or Pritzker on them as possible but stuff like DRW Trading College Prep is tacky as all get out.

  7. - Mike - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 2:33 pm:

    Ooohh…is she behind the phrase “Murder Mayor”?

  8. - Skeeter - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 2:34 pm:

    Great to see Quinn is hiring more communications staffers, rather than, I don’t know, DCFS caseworkers.

    The governor certainly has his priorities.

  9. - Dirty Red - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 2:36 pm:

    47th - I believe Brooke is splitting her time between state and campaign. That could be one reason.

  10. - Small Town Liberal - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 2:38 pm:

    - why not support an elected CPS board? -

    He already did:

  11. - Frank - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 2:49 pm:

    I think we should be careful not to read too much into this. A flack is a flack. Sometimes they have to throw some bombs for the people who sign their paycheck.

  12. - OneMan - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 2:51 pm:

    I am awaiting Tom Share to come over from DoC

  13. - Michelle Flaherty - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 3:00 pm:

    Squeezy, meet your new co-worker, Mouthy.

  14. - hisgirlfriday - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 3:31 pm:

    @SmallTownLiberal: Thanks for clarifying.

    @Frank: If “a flack is a flack” then Quinn could have just as easily hired the CPS spokeswoman who worked in Blagos communications office previously. He didn’t. He wanted this particular flack with ties to the CTU and (I believe) Bobby Rush.

  15. - Juvenal - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 4:01 pm:

    That’s “fiery”?


  16. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 4:10 pm:

    - Michelle Flaherty -,

    I would want you to be the “Un” Official Spokesman for the OW Write-In Ticket;

    “Un” Official so you could just say it as plain as possible, and not be saddled with ME!

    Incredibly witty, and untouchable, and as biting and brief as possible. Can’t touch it.

  17. - Nearly Normal - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 4:14 pm:

    She was also press sec for JJJ Sr and served as Communications Director for the Center on National Poverty Law.

  18. - Skeptic - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 4:15 pm:

    I think an OW/MF ticket would get my vote.

  19. - phocion - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 4:18 pm:

    Oh, boy! Is this election going to be great or what?!

  20. - RNUG - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 4:20 pm:

    PR people are hired guns, just like lawyers. They do what they are told to do. For the most part, their loyalty is to the green.

    Having said that, I’ll also go with the classic politics makes for strange bedfellows.

  21. - Wensicia - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 4:35 pm:

    Always a wise idea to hire people smarter and more articulate than yourself.

  22. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 4:44 pm:

    - Skeptic -,

    I am lucky - Bill - has decided to join me.

    I dance with the one I am with.

    Plus, let’s be honest, I know everyone would enjoy - Michelle Flaherty - either ripping me, supporting or doing both in the same pithy sentence as only - Michelle Flaherty - can do.

    To the Post,

    This is also a hire where the Spokesman might have to be reeled-in by the Principle a few times. Quinn can’t have his new Spokesman be more quotable than “Pat Quinn”.

    This will be a fun ride.

  23. - sal-says - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 5:03 pm:

    Never recall hearing anyone say: ‘quinn’s a rocket scientist’. But he’s quite good at stumbling/bumbling along as he ‘governs’. What’s the cost to taxpayers for his: ‘Senior Communications Manager’ plus ‘Quinn’s Communications Director’ ?

  24. - Rollo Tomasi - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 5:15 pm:

    Only in Illinois.

  25. - Mr.Big Trouble - Friday, Oct 25, 13 @ 5:24 pm:

    Let the games begin!

  26. - Undercover - Monday, Oct 28, 13 @ 11:55 am:

    It’s unfair to judge Stephanie Gadlin based upon her remarks speaking on behalf of CTU. A spokesperson’s job is not to express his or her own opinions but to relay the agendas of the organizations they represent. Based upon Ms. Gadlin’s statements on behalf of the CTU, I’d say she did a great job communicating CTU’s agenda to the public.

    Therefore, I say it was a smart move on Quinn’s part. She is clearly talented and able to keep on message.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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