David Orr was the alderman of the 49th Ward for 11 years from 1979 to 1990 as an independent Democrat opposed to the Democratic Machine which was criticized as corrupt and racist at the time. David Orr was credited for his job as Alderman by not only assigning more police patrols to preserve the peace, but to have civilian crime prevention foot patrols which would aid senior citizens who were victims of theft. Tenants received their tenant rights which helped them to repair damages to their homes.

David Orr used social tactics not only to obtain funds for his campaign, but to obtain the support of local voters, like having cookout parties, dances, and ice cream socials for voters to understand that he is the man for the job as alderman. He also organized cleanups for the 49th ward, including: covering potholes, unclogging street sewers, covering up graffiti, and collecting excessive litter. Orr used social tactics to obtain funds which, from selling simple $20 dance party ticket to asking friends for a $500 eternity donation.

David Orr was an Alderman with good reputation whose allies included independent progressive groups like Network 49. Since the day that Orr was elected into office, he pledged to work full time in order to increase citizen participation, in government. This lead to the creation of more parks, street improvement, and an increase in L stations. Not only did tenants receive their tenant rights but also senior citizens received the nursing home act amendment which gave rights to residents of nursing homes.


  David Orr had such an outstanding reputation that he even obtained his own nickname.


David Orr had a newspaper specifically for the 49th ward to keep his fellow tenants informed.


“It’s easy to feel that as a tenant you have no rights except the ‘right’ to pay rent. With David Orr as my alderman, I am confident that if there is a serious problem with my apartment, I’ll  be able t get it settled fairly.” –Linda Yates

“As a landlord, i’m impressed by Alderman Orr’s tough actions against bad buildings and irresponsible landlords. His strong support for responsible landlords who are struggling to maintain and improve their property helps our community a place where good tenants want to live.” –Jack O’Callaghan

Comments on David Orr’s political work by residents of the 49th ward.