Brandon Johnson was sworn in as the 57th Mayor of the City of Chicago Photo by Tia Carol Jones BRANDON JOHNSON SWORN IN AS MAYOR OF CHICAGO

On Monday, May 15, 2023, Brandon Johnson was sworn in as the 57th Mayor of the City of Chicago Photo by Tia Carol Jones
On Monday, May 15, 2023, Brandon Johnson was sworn in as the 57th Mayor of the City of Chicago Photo by Tia Carol Jones

 BRANDON JOHNSON SWORN IN AS MAYOR OF CHICAGO

By Tia Carol Jones

When Brandon Johnson’s name was announced, people at the UIC Pavilion stood to their feet and cheered, and chants of “Brandon” rang out. Then, there were chants of “CTU,” followed by “SEIU.”

Mayor Brandon Johnson’s swearing-in ceremony took place on Monday, May 15th, with dignitaries and residents in one room to celebrate a changing of administration that many are hopeful will bring unity and inclusion.

The Reverend Dr. Otis Moss III gave the invocation and in it,
Moss spoke about the hope that marginalized voices could find
space in the new administration. “We, as constituents, of this grand
Metropolis of possibility, engage our imagination to dream of a city
that is yet to be born; One city, not divided by income, one city not divided by race, one city not divided by ethnicity,” Moss said. Inaugural Chicago Poet Laureate avery r. young performed, “& whereas a dream can blas(t) off.”

In Rabbi Shoshanah Conover’s blessing, comparisons were drawn
between Johnson and Joseph from the Bible. “So may God place
within you, a heart of many colors. And, may your rainbow heart, beat in the rhythm of all Chicago. May you continue to act with the kind of integrity that has brought you to this very moment,” Conover said.

After the Aldermanic Oath of Office, Johnson hugged former
Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Lightfoot shook the hand of First Lady
Stacie Johnson and their children. 
Imam Hassan Ally gave the prayer for peace and guidance. Ally talked about it being a new era for the City of Chicago and the State of Illinois and advised Johnson to judge with justice. Grammy award winning Gospel singer Karen Clark Sheard sang “Total Praise,” which brought the people in the audience, as well as people on stage to their feet, with some even lifting their hands in the air.

In his Inaugural Address, Johnson talked about the food, the
music and the people of the city of Chicago. He thanked the elected
officials for their service and congratulated the Alderpersons who
took their oath of office. He also thanked Lightfoot for her service
and her sacrifice. He talked about how his mother taught him to love
people and said he could feel her in the room. He talked about how his father taught him to work hard and be accountable.

“We all are here because of the work of giants who came before
us and without whom this day would not be possible,” Johnson
said. During his address, someone shouted “go ‘head Black man.” He took a moment to take it all in and returned to his speech, where he talked about wanting to re-open the mental health facilities that
were closed.

“Once and for all, let’s create a safer Chicago. A safe Chicago
means a safe Chicago for all, no matter what you look like, who you
love or where you live. We’ll do it by investing in people,” Johnson
said. In just his first hours in office, Mayor Brandon Johnson signed
four executive orders to: establish a Deputy Mayor for Labor Relations; establish a Deputy Mayor for Community Safety; establish a Mayor for Immigrant, Migrant and Refugee Rights; and boost youth employment.

“As your Mayor, it’s my duty to take bold, immediate action
to build a better, stronger, safer Chicago,” Mayor Johnson said in a
release. “My first executive orders as Mayor of Chicago is to instruct
our government to boost youth employment, so all young Chicagoans can reach their potential across our city, in addition to re-organizing the work of the Deputy Mayors to ensure that my cabinet reflects our top priorities for achieving community safety, supporting new arrivals, and protecting and expanding the right to organize. Together, we will collaborate to build a stronger city for all of us.”

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