Kramer proud of campaign despite loss in 43rd Ward


In a heated race for the Alderman seat in Lincoln Park’s 43rd Ward, first-time candidate Jennifer “Jen” Kramer couldn’t get enough votes to bring her to a potential runoff. At her election night party, a room with more than 60 people including family, campaign volunteers and friends gathered to show their support.

Racing for the 43rd alderman position, Kramer did not make it to the runoff since she only received about 16.8 percent of the votes. Meanwhile other candidates, Alderman Michele Smith (current 43rd Ward Alderman) came in with 41.5 percent, and Caroline Vickrey with 35.7 percent who will now compete in a runoff on April 7.

The ward’s former Alderman Vi Daley, also showed up to share her support for Kramer, and confirmed of being the one who advocated for Kramer to run.

“I approached Jen, asked her if she would consider being an Alderman, because I know she would be a great leader,” Daley said. “She knows how the city works, she knows how to do things. I felt she would be the ideal candidate for the 43rd.”

One of her campaign volunteers Kenneth Dolson said, “I know all of the candidates, I’ve worked for them. It’s been interesting to observe the interests of each candidate, and I thought Jen had good combination of experience and integrity.”

But finally, after hours of waiting and uncertainty, Kramer came out along with her campaign manager Connor Kelly to share the results, which were not the ones the supporters wanted to hear.

Kramer came out to thank her supporters and said, “This is not the last time I will knock on a door.”

“I’m very proud of the job that we did, we worked really hard, we did all that we could. It is absolutely the most rich and fulfilling experience that I’ve had in my life,” said Kramer towards this race. “I want to encourage women, especially young ones to truly believe that a goal that they see it is really possible.”

Kramer also recognized her opponents and the competitive spirit of the race.

“I want to acknowledge both Michele Smith and Caroline Vickrey for a very hard race,” Kramer said. “I think the people at Lincoln Park have been paying very close attention. We had four very strong candidates that brought very new ideas to the forefront,”she said.

One of her closest campaign supporters Donald Grabowski said, “I’m sad for Jen, because I know how good of an alderman she would have been. I’m sad for the 43rd Ward because I know how much good she could do.”

Even though the results were not what the room hoped for, in the election night party for Kramer, some made very clear that this would not be all for Kramer. “It was a disappointing outcome, but she made an impact in the race, and I don’t think we heard the last of her,” campaign volunteer Maureen Kelly said.