Chicago, Illinois , United States
|| June 10, 1948
Dec 26, 2014 06:40pm
Caucasian - Liberal - Moderate-to-Liberal - Government Reform - Health Care Reform - Jobs/Industrial Growth - Pro-Affirmative Action - Pro-Choice - Pro-Labor - Married - Straight -
|Info||Paul Gust Vallas |
Mr. Vallas served as the Chief Executive Officer of Chicago Public Schools from 1995 to 2001. During his tenure, Mr. Vallas transformed the nation's third largest school system from what was thought of as "the worst in the country" to "a model for the nation." Mr. Vallas initiated a broad series of educational reforms to reverse the system's persistent failure. He eliminated a projected four-year shortfall of $1.3 billion within two years and balanced the system's budget each year thereafter. Mr. Vallas fully restored financial stability to the Chicago Public Schools, which earned thirteen bond rating upgrades within a six year period.
During his term, he also implemented an unprecedented capital improvement program by constructing 76 new buildings and renovating more than 500 existing buildings. The program produced a vastly improved learning and teaching environment for the school system. Mr. Vallas streamlined the system's administrative organization by eliminating 1,700 duplicative non-teaching positions and replacing inefficient operations with privately managed services. Mr. Vallas is also credited with ending social promotion, the reorganization of Chicago's high schools, and establishing the largest after-school and summer reading programs in the country. Between 1996 and 2000, student test scores improved by virtually every academic indicator, including six consecutive years of improved elementary reading scores.
Prior to serving as Chief Executive for Chicago's public schools, Mr. Vallas was budget director for the City of Chicago. In this role, Mr. Vallas closed the City's $125 million budget gap and received the first unanimous city council vote for passage of a city budget in over 40 years. Mr. Vallas also served as revenue director for the City of Chicago from 1990 to 1993.
Mr. Vallas was Executive Director of the Illinois Economic and Fiscal Commission from 1985 to 1990, where he was responsible for reviewing, analyzing and assessing the legislative impact of state finances on state and local taxes. He also dealt with economic development issues.
Before joining the Illinois Economic and Fiscal Commission, Mr. Vallas served as a policy advisor to the Illinois State Senate. Mr. Vallas was the principal advisor to the Senate Elementary and Secondary Education and Appropriations Committees.
Unsuccessful candidate for Democratic nomination for Governor of Illinois 2002.
In February 2009, Vallas announced he would seek the Cook County Board President seat as a Republican.