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Chicago Ald. Howard Brookins latest to say he won’t run again

Ald. Howard Brookins has joined the growing list of Chicago City Council members who won’t seek another term in office.

Brookins, who has represented the 21st Ward since 2003, said in a release he “took pride in modeling servant leadership for our beautiful communities” and that he was “thankful for having the trust of my community as we worked together to provide greater economic opportunity and prosperity for our people.”

He, who is currently chairing the Committee on Transportation and Public Way, will serve out the rest of his term, which ends next May.

Brookins “wants to hand the baton over to a new generation of leaders who can make sure the movement for racial justice and economic equity is sustained into the new political era,” the release said, noting that he had worked “with young leaders like Ronnie Mosley to charter the new 21st Ward Young Democrats organization.”

Brookins, the son of former state Sen. Howard B. Brookins Sr., who founded the family-run Brookins Funeral Home in Auburn-Gresham, is also an attorney. After a losing bid for a judicial seat on the Cook County Circuit Court earlier this year, Brookins hinted he might step away from the council to continue his law practice.

He was fighting a city board finding that his defense of clients in criminal cases involving the Chicago Police Department violated the city’s ethics ordinance and said, “If I don’t win, I’m pretty sure that I stay until May when the term is over. But I don’t know.”

He joins a growing exodus of council members who are retiring or, in the case of several colleagues, declining to run again for their ward seats and instead are challenging Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s bid for a second term. Ald. Susan Sadlowski-Garza announced just Sunday that she will not seek another term.

More to come.

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