Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern


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Many students apathetic to new Evanston government

The day after Evanston residents elected a mayor and city council, many Northwestern students were generally apathetic about their new government.

For Jose Dutriz, a Medill junior, a lack of familiarity contributed to his not paying attention to Evanston politics.

“I’m not even from here, I’m not from the U.S.,” he said. “I’m interested in American politics, but not local politics.”

On Tuesday, Evanston residents elected a new mayor, current Ald. Elizabeth Tisdahl (7th), and a city council including five new council members: Judy Fiske (1st), Donald Wilson (4th), Mark Tendam (6th), Jane Grover (7th) and Coleen Burrus (9th).

Jean Montano said she knew the elections happened because she works at Patten Gym, a polling site. She was not aware, however, of how many changes would come out of the election.

“I really wasn’t aware that the government had changed that radically,” the Medill freshman said.

Other students showed a similar lack of interest in the city elections.

But one new alderman, Burrus, is NU’s director of corporate relations. She won the 9th ward aldermanic race with 59 percent of the vote.

Some students said they think her appointment to the council could positively affect the ever-rocky town-gown relations.

“That’s good,” Montano said. “Because Northwestern is such a big geographic and social part of Evanston.”

Andrew Van Beek agreed.

“Hopefully there will be a stronger dialogue between the university and city government,” the Communication sophomore said.

Perhaps the most important change to the council occurred at the top with the election of a new mayor.

Tisdahl will take over in May for Mayor Lorraine Morton, who has held the spot for 16 years.

The election of Tisdahl may be particularly important for NU students. She has spoken many times about the need for increased cooperation between the city and the university, and has called for NU to contribute to the city both economically and intellectually.

Weinberg junior Rachel Park said she understands why Tisdahl won such a resounding victory.

“The economic climate maybe encouraged more people to support her views,” she said. “I know a lot of people were against the tower, I know a lot of people want money from Northwestern.”

That being said, Park said she does not see the election of Tisdahl as impacting her life in a major way.

“I don’t expect anything to change very much,” she said.

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Many students apathetic to new Evanston government