Already raising more than $265,000, Derek Lindblom has the biggest campaign war chest of any Smith challenger. With campaign backers like former Deputy Mayors Steve Koch and Mark Angelson and businessman Matthew Pritzker (cousin to soon-to-be Gov. JB Pritzker), Lindblom is considered to be a significant threat to Smith.
With more than 170 donations — and no amount higher than $5,600 — the Harvard graduate has more individual contributions than his other challengers.
Previously, he was chief of staff for Emanuel’s economic counsel, where he “helped government run more efficiently.”
“I think with the mayor not running, we need someone who is going to have creative policy,” he said. “We need someone who is going to fight for efficiency.”
Lindblom said he has a clear track record of “cutting through the red tape” and he believes that he has significant experience in both the private and public sector to make that happen.
Lindblom is also a venture capitalist who invests in health technology, and said technology could be used to solve some of the biggest issues facing the city.
“We have had too many instances of a criminal committing multiple crimes that could have been stopped with the proper technology,” he said, adding that we could be using traffic cameras to track down stolen vehicles.
When it comes to Lincoln Yards, Lindblom echoed what’s been said at community meetings, citing the need to avoid congestion and add green spaces.
“Let’s make sure we are getting a ton of park space for our community,” he said. “If we are not thoughtful about putting improvements in place, I think we are going to regret it.
Lindblom aims to run a positive campaign, saying that an alderman needs to bring people together and “bring fun to the community.” He said that things like ward bike rides, senior walks and block parties can be extremely valuable to the community.
“I’m a very positive person,” he said. “The more this race is about the people in this community, the better my campaign will do.”