Greene kicks off campaign with mayors’ support


Daily file photo by Lauren Duquette

City Clerk Rodney Greene attends a council meeting. Greene kicked off his reelection campaign for city clerk on Sunday.

Nora Shelly, City Editor

Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl and former Mayor Lorraine H. Morton voiced their support for City Clerk Rodney Greene’s reelection campaign Sunday afternoon.

Greene — who is running for his third term as city clerk — shared his platform at a campaign kickoff event at Roycemore School. Morton said she supports Greene because of his experience in the office.

“I’ve seen what he’s done,” she said. “It’s such a big responsibility; you have to have someone with smarts.”

Greene said Sunday he hopes to continue making the office more accessible for Evanston residents.

“I’ve been in this office, I’ve done my training, so I can be a better clerk,” he said. “I’m here for the public in my position, to give people what they need when they need it.”

Greene was appointed by Morton in 2008 after the previous clerk stepped down. Over his eight years in office, Greene said he has worked to serve Evanston residents, including reinstituting passport registration and providing more online forms and information on the city’s website.

If re-elected, Greene said he would work to bring fingerprinting services to the office and postcards of Evanston for residents to mail. He said he would focus on increasing the accessibility of city information, partially by making the city website more user-friendly.

“I get a lot of my ideas from the public,” Greene said. “If there is something that they think I should do, if it’s possible then I’ll get it done.”

Greene’s supporters said his attitude and experience make him the best candidate for the job.

“The job of the city clerk may not be one you think about a lot, but if that office isn’t functioning and you need it to be, you’ll be thinking about it an incredible amount,” he said. “He’s taken every class there is to take on how to be a better city clerk so he knows the job.”

Greene said his experience was what separated him from his opponent — 24-year-old Devon Reid — who is pushing for more transparency in the office. He stressed that the clerk’s role is limited because the city clerk cannot introduce or vote on ordinances. The most important role of the job is to “disperse information,” Greene said.

Supporter Carlis Sutton, who is running for 5th Ward alderman, said Greene’s attitude was the reason for his success in the office.

“He’s always kind, he’s always open, no question is too dumb,” he said. “He’s reliable.”

Greene said he wanted to ensure the role would be functioning for years to come.

“That’s what I do in the clerk’s office, give back to you what I have received to make it better for any future clerk that comes around,” Greene said.

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Twitter: @noracshelly