Kathy Osterman

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Kathy Osterman (July 22, 1943 – December 8, 1992), was a Chicago politician who was born Kathleen Mary Lonergan in the Bronx. Entering politics as a block club president who had been social director of Lawrence House, a facility for disabled persons, Osterman in 1981 became a community relations director for then-State's Attorney Richard M. Daley, who became her political patron.

In 1987 Osterman emerged victorious from an eleven-person race in which Mayor Harold Washington declined to endorse any candidate, and was elected alderman of the lakefront 48th Ward,[1] which at that time consisted primarily of the Edgewater community as well as parts of Uptown. Initially a part of the Washington bloc in Council Wars, she switched to the largely white bloc immediately following Washington's death and during the tenure of Eugene Sawyer. She served on numerous City Council committees, including the Human Rights Committee, where she forged strong links with the ward's significant gay community. Only two years into her term, Osterman retired in 1989, facilitating Daley's appointment of Mary Ann Smith as alderman.[2] Osterman subsequently was appointed Director of the Mayor's Office of Special Events.

During her brief tenure, Osterman worked on the rehabilitation of the Broadway Armory and the restoration of two vintage mansions in Berger Park along Sheridan Road, as public facilities.[3] She lobbied vigorously for passage of Chicago's Human Rights Ordinance in 1988. As a result Osterman was inducted into the Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame as a Friend of the Community in 1993.[4][5]

On May 1, 1992, Osterman married radio political commentator Bruce DuMont. Later that year she died of cancer.


  1. ^ http://books.google.com/books?id=VegZ4NF-7KEC/ David K. Fremon, Chicago Politics Ward by Ward (1988, Indiana University Press), ISBN 0-253-31344-9, at 321
  2. ^ http://www.chicagoreader.com/features/stories/theworks/071115/index.php?cAction= Ben Joravsky, Forty-Eighth Ward Follies, Chicago Reader, November 15, 2007
  3. ^ http://www.edgewaterhistory.org/articles/index.html?v05-1-7.html Gloria L. Evenson, Kathy Osterman - Remembered Through the Eyes and Hearts of Her Community, Edgewater Historical Society newsletter, Vol. V No. 1 - SPRING/SUMMER 1993
  4. ^ http://www.glhalloffame.org/index.pl?page=inductees&todo=year
  5. ^ http://www.glhalloffame.org/index.pl?item=42&todo=view_item Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame, Kathy Osterman