As of 8:45 p.m., 47th Ward Aldermanic candidate Ameya Pawar was the apparent winner with 50.67% of the vote with 92% reporting.
In an exclusive interview with the Center Square Journal, Pawar was still struggling with the idea of victory.
“I wish I had something prepared to say. We’ve been knocking on doors and canvassing up to the last moment. I’m at a loss for words,” said Pawar.
Pawar was still watching the returns come in with a group of friends at a private gathering. His campaign is planning to hold a celebration and make a statement to the media at Timber Lanes Bowling Alley, 1851 W. Irving Park Road, later this evening.
He attributed his victory to a newly empowered 47th Ward electorate. “I think people want to have a say about what goes on in their government. They want a voice,” he told Center Square Journal.
His first act as a new Alderman?
“I think I want to get the community together and have a dialogue. There’s a lot of pressing issues. The ward council’s one way to get people back to gether again,” said Pawar. Part of his platform was to create a ward council, comprised of community leaders, to review development decisions and legislative initiatives.
“I want to talk with [outgoing] Alderman [Eugene] Schulter and his organization. They have a lot of institutional knowledge and I’d like to have them participating in what’s next.
“[Schulter] leaves behind an incredible legacy. The kids programs. The senior programs. He leaves behind 36 years of service,” said Pawar.
As for what Schulter supporters in various community organization should expect, Pawar was gracious.
“I want to sit down with everyone. That’s what I’d like to do with the Chambers [of Commerce]. And I want to make sure they’re advocates for what they represent. I don’t advocate cleaning house.”