Miguel del Valle

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Miguel del Valle
City Clerk of Chicago
In office
December 1, 2006 – May 16, 2011
Preceded by James Laski
Succeeded by Susana Mendoza
Illinois State Senator
from the 2nd district
In office
Preceded by Edward Nedza
Succeeded by William Delgado
Personal details
Born (1951-07-24) July 24, 1951 (age 65)
Vega Baja, Puerto Rico
Political party Democratic Party
Spouse(s) Lupe del Valle
Children 3 sons
1 daughter
Alma mater Northeastern Illinois University
Religion Roman Catholic

Miguel del Valle (born July 24, 1951) is an American politician and the former City Clerk of Chicago. He was an Illinois State Senator for two decades, representing the 2nd District of Chicago from 1987–2006. Miguel lost his bid for mayor in Chicago's February 22, 2011 municipal elections, coming in third with 53,953 votes.[1]

Early and personal life[edit]

Del Valle was born in Puerto Rico and was brought to Chicago at the age of four by his parents.[2] He grew up in the predominantly working class Latina/o West Town and Humboldt Park neighborhoods of Chicago.[2][3] After graduating from Tuley High School (now Roberto Clemente Community Academy) in 1969 he went on to Northeastern Illinois University.[2] At Northeastern Miguel was a student organizer, joining the Union for Puerto Rican Students and writing for the student publication Que Ondee Sola.
After earning a bachelor's and a master's degree in Education and Guidance from Northeastern, Miguel served as Unit Director of the Barreto Boys & Girls Club and then as Executive Director of the Association House, a non-profit organization providing social services and educational programs on Chicago's northwest side.[4] During his time as Executive Director of the Association House Miguel was heralded by the Chicago Tribune as an "emerging young leader."[5] In 1982, after organizing meetings, rallies, and lobbying Chicago's Chicago City Council Miguel was successful in re-instating city funding for Association House's successful jobs program for unemployed youth.[6]
In 2008, Miguel was awarded an honorary degree from National Louis University for his "inspirational leadership."[7]
He currently sits on the Board of Directors for Advance Illinois and was appointed by Illinois Governor Pat Quinn as Chairman of the Illinois P-20 Council. Additionally he served on several non-profit organizational boards, including Josephinium High School, the Latino Institute and the Spanish Coalition for Housing. He has also served as Chairman of the Mayor Harold Washington’s Advisory Commission on Latino Affairs, and taught a class at Roosevelt University called “Latinos and Public Policy.”
Senator del Valle is married to Lupe, and has four children: Miguel Jr., Ivan, Esteban, and Vanessa.[8]

Senate career[edit]

In 1987, del Valle was elected the first Hispanic Senator in the Illinois General Assembly after he defeated Edward Nedza in the Democratic primary.[9] He was the Assistant Majority Leader in the Illinois Senate, and he was the first Latino to hold that position. He served as an outspoken advocate for Latino representation in the legislative and judicial branches of government. He was the Co-Chair of the Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus and was the only Latino member of the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus. His leadership in redistricting cases in 1981, 1991 and 2001 led to the creation of Latino majority districts on the city, county, and state levels.

Del Valle sponsored legislation to protect homeowners by stopping the forgery of quitclaim deeds which is the process of transferring the title or deed of property to another individual or company. He has also sponsored legislation to provide harsher punishment for ATM crimes; provide Illinois with more Early Childhood Teachers; provide comprehensive health coverage for every child in Illinois; and increase funding for Advanced Placement courses in Illinois high schools.

Del Valle is the founder of the Illinois Association of Hispanic State Employees (IAHSE). He is the co-founder of several Latino organizations, including the Illinois Latino Advisory Council on Higher Education (ILACHE); the Alliance of Latinos and Jews; and the Illinois Hispanic Democratic Council (IHDC). He also developed the annual Department of Children and Family Services Hispanic Families Conference.

Del Valle was the Vice-Chairman of the Education Committee, Co-Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Education Funding Reform and the Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus. He also served on the Senate Executive Committee, the Senate Labor Committee, and the Higher Education Committee.

In the 2006 Illinois primary elections, Del Valle received local media attention for his support of Ramon Ocasio III for judge over the Cook County Democratic Party-endorsed candidate, Ed Lechowicz, son of former Cook County Commissioner and Illinois State Senator Ted Lechowicz. Del Valle, who sponsored legislation to create the subcircuit system, stated that the system was created to give women & minorities the opportunity to serve on the bench.[citation needed]

City Clerk[edit]

In 2006, Miguel del Valle was appointed City Clerk of Chicago by Mayor Richard M. Daley after the previous clerk, James Laski, was indicted on federal charges. Del Valle won a city-wide election to the post in 2007, becoming the first Latino elected to the Chicago City Clerk's office.

As City Clerk, del Valle's office is responsible for maintaining official city government records, distributing approximately 1.3 million vehicle stickers and residential parking permits, and issuing city business licenses.

Clerk del Valle is focused on bringing more efficiency and visibility to City Clerk services by providing greater access to public records, including web casting of City Council meetings, expanding community outreach programs, modernizing operations to expedite the sale of dog registrations, city stickers and residential parking.

Significant City Council transparency efforts include posting nearly 700,000 pages of searchable City Council records to the City Clerk website, www.ChiCityClerk.com. This includes every ordinance passed since 1981, the Byrne Administration, as well as city budgets and Mayoral Executive orders going back nearly 30 years. In addition, for the first time ever, City Council meetings can be watched live or on demand via a City Council video archive on the City Clerk website, www.ChiCityClerk.com.

Campaign for Mayor[edit]

After Mayor Daley announced that he will not run for another term, del Valle was the first to declare his candidacy in the Chicago mayoral election, 2011. He was the first candidate to air a campaign ad on television, the first to have a website and Facebook page, and the first (and only) candidate to publicly declare he will not accept campaign contributions from companies that do business with the city.

In the election he came in third in a field of six, with about nine percent of the vote.[10] In his concession speech he promised to continue to push for a progressive agenda, though he would soon leave office as city clerk.[11]


  1. ^ "Election results: Chicago mayor, ward-by-ward totals". Chicago Sun-Times. March 29, 2011. Retrieved 1 May 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c http://www.chicagonow.com/blogs/chicago-muckrakers/2011/01/miguel-del-valle-will-now-take-your-questions.html
  3. ^ "Chicago - Chicago : News : Politics : Things To Do : Sports". Chicago Sun-Times. September 10, 2011. 
  4. ^ http://mayoraltutorial.com/meet-the-candidates/miguel-del-valle/
  5. ^ George de Lama. (1981, November 1). A growing presence, a desire for betterment :HISPANIC CHICAGO Hispanics in Chicago hold no major political office. Voter registration is very light among Hispanics. A canceled festival and tavern closings brought protests. Reading levels lag behind at heavily Hispanic Schools. Villalobos almost turned down the school board presidency. There's no Operation PUSH in the Hispanic community.. Chicago Tribune (1963-Current file),p. h10. Retrieved January 20, 2011, from ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1987). (Document ID: 627049672).
  6. ^ Joye Brown. 1982. Jobs program given reprieve. Chicago Tribune (1963-Current file), October 21, http://www.proquest.com/ (accessed January 20, 2011).
  7. ^ http://nlu.nl.edu/proyecto/events.cfm
  8. ^ Felsenthal, Carol (2 February 2011). "A Look at Miguel del Valle, a Regular Chicago Guy Who Wants to Be Mayor". Chicago. 
  9. ^ http://www.lib.niu.edu/1987/ii870115.html
  10. ^ Davey, Monica (February 22, 2011). "Rahm Emanuel Elected Mayor of Chicago". The New York Times. 
  11. ^ http://www.wgntv.com/news/elections/mayor/wgntv-del-valle-concedes-feb22,0,800604.story

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