**As we approach the end of 2021, we need to make sure that the movement that started seven months ago when I announced my candidacy can cross the finish line at the election and finally take to Congress. Let's raise $20k by 2022 to make this happen. Read more about me below.**

HERE’S WHERE I COME FROM:

I was born into a working class family in Chicago. My dad was an Air Force veteran, a postal worker, and an active church volunteer. My mom worked hard everyday caring for five children, teaching Sunday School and leading the children’s choir at church, all while working 9 to 5 clerical jobs outside the home. I was only in 6th grade when I received my first experience as a Community Organizer while fighting for my own education as an elementary student. The faith and hard work I learned from my parents and the commitment to justice I learned from my organizing have guided my life.

HERE’S WHAT I’VE DONE:

I was the first in his family to attend college and the only one to be ordained into the ministry. I’ve spent my young life fighting to empower families and communities.  I registered and mobilized young voters as the Youth and Young Adult Coordinator on Barack Obama’s 2004 Campaign for U.S. Senate and organized churches to combat community violence through the Chicago Peace Campaign. As Deputy Campaign Manager at A+ Illinois, I helped organize a statewide coalition to transform school funding that included both major teachers unions, AFSCME, the Illinois Farm Bureau, the Chicago Chamber of Commerce and the Urban League.  Advocacy Director at New Schools for Chicago, I helped expand the number of high quality school options available for families in underserved communities like the one where I grew up. And I organized Parent Power Chicago, a group of parent advocates, local entrepreneurs, service providers, and leading philanthropists dedicated to empowering parents to lead their children to success.

In 2013, I started a boutique public affairs consulting firm with my brother that specialized in forging unlikely partnerships and leading tough conversations.  And in the midst of a tumultuous Trump administration, I helped launch a movement called the AND Campaign to clarify the role of the church in fighting for justice, equity, and order.

HERE’S WHERE WE’RE GOING:

Our country is right now, divided more deeply than at any time since the Civil War. Two major factors are driving this division. The first factor is economic inequality. The nation has rapidly increasing gaps in income, overall wealth, educational opportunity, and access to affordable housing and quality healthcare. The second factor is an all-consuming culture war.

Growing up in the church, I know that people of faith take their values and convictions seriously. And having gotten involved in social justice work at just 12 years old, I learned pretty early in life that there are a lot of great people who while they don’t look at the world through the lens of the church, they have righteous values and deep convictions. That’s why I know that we have a window of opportunity to do some big things: 

  • Revamp our economy with strong unions, fair wages, universal college, a guaranteed basic income, and a regulatory climate that works for small businesses, not just large corporations.

  • Assess the damage that Covid shutdowns have done to our children’s education and develop a plan to put them on track to lead the world, not fall further behind than we were before the pandemic

  • We have to get big money out of politics and make voting easier and smarter for all of us, so that we can restore faith in our democracy before we lose an entire generation of young voters to apathy  

  • Reject the notion that being for policing reform means being against police officers as we build a robust public safety infrastructure that pairs prevention and intervention with strong law enforcement strategies.

I’m running for Congress because I’m ready to help the Democratic Party and our government move beyond the politics of division that currently have us stuck with the status quo. But, it’s going to take your support! We need to make calls, knock doors, send mail, and advertise if we want to reach every voter in the 1st Congressional District. 

Please chip in today!


Show your support for this campaign by endorsing it and sharing why!

  • endorsed

    “I've been Pastor Butler's rallies, and he's a good man with great ideas. Excited to see how he will help Illinois' 1st district when in office.”

  • endorsed

    “Pastor Chris is the man to lead this march towards civility. I’m proud to endorse his candidacy because we don’t have to ask what he’ll do because he is already doing it!”

  • endorsed

    “He's a family man with a plan with a clear vision for change.”

  • endorsed

    “I endorse Chris Butler because he has the integrity, compassion, inclusiveness and intelligence to be an outstanding Congressman. He knows how to listen, empathize, and lead, and he will bring new energy and opportunities to the 1st Congressional District.”

  • endorsed

    “I endorse Pastor Chris Butler because he has a rare compassion to find achievable ground with those who are on the opposite side of important issues. Yet, he carries a courageous conviction that will advance vital change in the 1st congressional district and beyond.”

  • endorsed

    “I endorse Pastor Chris Butler because he is dedicated to finding solutions without a pride that prevents progress. With a humility I've never before seen in a candidate, he holds his convictions dear and compassionately listens to those who hold different convictions. He's spent so much of his career making difficult decisions that effect people's lives, and as a result he takes others seriously and deeply cares about the people that policy--and political inaction--effects.”

  • endorsed

    “I support this family man because he’s honest, and full of integrity. I have known him since I was in high school and he has never waivered from his faith and who he is. I proudly endorse this candidate.”

December 30, 2021

These were our top 10 campaign moments of 2021…

With 2021 coming to a close, I can’t help but feel grateful for the relentless support and dedication I’ve received from my supporters this year. This is the year I launched my congressional campaign to represent the Illinois 1st District, and so much has happened since I made the decision to run.

In honor of this year, I asked some of my staff and volunteers to vote on their favorite campaign moments. Thus, the following list was formed. Scroll down for a quick journey through 2021 nostalgia.

#10: International Festival of Life

On Saturday, September 11th and Sunday, September 12th, we rolled out to the International Festival of Life, a celebration of African and Caribbean culture held at Washington Park. Attended by thousands of people, this festival had it all – over 200 vendors, amazing diverse food, engaging entertainment, and, of course, us and our booth! I am grateful to have been able to give a speech from the main stage, as well as to interact with so many people one-on-one.

#9: Sherwood Peace Garden Event

This event holds a special place in my heart because it was our first campaign event! People came from all over the district to hear me speak about my vision for safe communities and my commitment to not just fight the violence, but also to make the peace. I spoke in a peace garden I helped create as a part of the Chicago Peace Campaign when we successfully confronted violent corners and brought them peace a decade ago. It was so cold that day that I buttoned my shirt all the way up to the top button. . . but I figured, if I can handle this, this campaign won’t be so bad after all. And so far, “not so bad” has been a massive understatement.

#8: My Trip to Washington

I spent the first couple of days of this month in the nation’s capital! This was my first trip to Washington, DC as a candidate. I was able to connect with people from all over the country who are passionate about making positive change in this nation.

#7: 1st District Together Rally

On November 10th, a diverse group of speakers from all over the Illinois 1st District offered inspirational thoughts at this unity-themed rally. The rally, hosted at the Maranatha Chapel by Pastors Doug and Lamond Banks, had great fellowship, food, and music. The hosts prayed a powerful prayer, and the speakers offered important insights about how we as a district can come together to make change that works for all of us. Together, we demonstrated that, while people in power try to divide us, we won’t allow them to take our voice. Standing together with the diverse and vibrant communities of the newly-redistricted 1st District, we looked like America.

#6: Fedora Fridays

For several weeks during the spring and summer, we held Fedora Fridays, where we spent the day at a local business or organization in the district (with me wearing my trusty fedora hat, of course). These events allowed us to engage with customers to hear the heart of the community, as well as to promote local businesses and organizations. It was an honor to hear the heart of the community from everyone we connected with at these events.

#5: Family 1st Town Hall in South Chicago

We held a Town Hall-style event in South Chicago, where I was able to share thoughts about how to revitalize our communities and families and directly answer questions from people like you. I was humbled by the engagement and energy at this event, and excited to be able to share the importance of my campaign and why the 1st District community needs a new representative in Congress.

#4: September 11th Memorial

To honor the sacrifices that our country’s firefighters have made, both during the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on our nation and while saving lives every day that they are on duty, a group of supporters (including my kids) and I went to our local fire department with some thank-you donuts. I enjoyed building relationships with our local firefighters and offering them some well-deserved thanks (and carbs).

#3: Memorial Day festivities

Memorial Day this year was, well, memorable for several reasons! So much happened that day. First we met with veterans in Bronzeville who shared memories of their compatriots. They offered insights from their own experiences watching our communities change over the years, and their vision for the growth of our district. Later, we had a picnic with supporters at Barnard Park. Listening to these veterans sharing memories of friends they’d fought alongside emphasized to me the importance of memory for building community. As members of families, churches, and communities, we base a large part of our identity in the memories that we share with others. Our memories shape our understanding of what it means to be a part of our community. They impact our values and the vision that we have for the future. For me, it is memories like this one that will determine how I serve the 1st District in Congress.

#2: Our Campaign Launch

Eight months ago, we officially announced my candidacy and launched our campaign. We held the launch at the Two Mile Coffee Bar, a beautiful cafe housed inside a historic Metra train station in my home neighborhood of Beverly. We deliberately chose to host the launch at an old train station to reflect our campaign theme, “Let’s Move Forward Together”. I was honored to receive strong endorsements and affirming words from community leaders and supporters like you, and continue to be blown away by the dedicated support I receive every day.

#1: Bud Billiken Parade

You know this event was great since it out-ranks even the campaign launch! Native Chicagoans will recognize the Bud Billiken Parade and Picnic as a 93-year-old annual tradition honoring the past and celebrating the future of the African-American community. This year, the parade was held on August 14, and it was so much fun! The energy throughout the event was electric. We had about 40 volunteers and supporters coming from near and far to march with us during the parade, chanting the campaign rhymes that we’d come up with for this event. We had red campaign shirts and signs, and we handed out campaign fans and candy to kids attending the event. We even had original music! Bishop Edward Peecher, a Chicago legend, gave us the honor of recording the vocals for our song. Our campaign staff had the opportunity to meet elected officials, community leaders, and celebrities at the VIP/Dignitary breakfast. But most importantly, I was able to interact with the amazing constituents of the south side of Chicago, who were as fun, entertaining, and insightful as the parade itself.

Other Special Moments:

The Mokena Fourth of July Parade. Marching at the Fourth of July parade in Mokena and introducing ourselves to voters was a great way to honor our nation and community.

Celebrating America’s first Juneteenth. This year, Juneteenth, the June 19th holiday celebrating the emancipation of America’s slaves, became an official national holiday. To celebrate, the Chris Butler for Congress community connected with community members at the Beverly/Morgan Park Family Festival & Business Crawl, as well as the Perspectives/IIT Math & Science Academy Celebrate Freedom Event. I also spoke at the All Black Everything Expo at Compassion Baptist Church and the One Eleven Food Hall Juneteenth Celebration. Lastly, a group of supporters and I biked around Englewood for the Juneteenth Roll N Peace. This bike ride event was successful in its mission of reducing community violence, as no violence was reported in Englewood that night.

Hope Center Clean-Up Day. That day, a group of supporters and I joined the Hope Center in Blue Island to clean up the community! It was great to connect with passionate, dedicated Blue Island residents. Plus, my son Christopher Anthony ended up being featured in a Chicago Tribune article about this event, making me a proud dad.

This year has shown me the power of building relationships and coalitions with diverse Americans. I cannot wait to continue building on the work of my dedicated team of staff, volunteers, and supporters in fueling our movement all the way to Congress.

If you want to take the next step in seeing the Illinois 1st District truly flourish, get involved in the Chris Butler for Congress community! Help make many more dynamic and illuminating events happen by joining our mailing list, donating to the campaign, volunteering for the campaign, and more. 

It’s been a wonderful year. I can’t wait to see what 2022 brings.

Back to all updates

Show your support for this campaign by endorsing it and sharing why!

  • endorsed

    “I've been Pastor Butler's rallies, and he's a good man with great ideas. Excited to see how he will help Illinois' 1st district when in office.”

  • endorsed

    “Pastor Chris is the man to lead this march towards civility. I’m proud to endorse his candidacy because we don’t have to ask what he’ll do because he is already doing it!”

  • endorsed

    “He's a family man with a plan with a clear vision for change.”

  • endorsed

    “I endorse Chris Butler because he has the integrity, compassion, inclusiveness and intelligence to be an outstanding Congressman. He knows how to listen, empathize, and lead, and he will bring new energy and opportunities to the 1st Congressional District.”

  • endorsed

    “I endorse Pastor Chris Butler because he has a rare compassion to find achievable ground with those who are on the opposite side of important issues. Yet, he carries a courageous conviction that will advance vital change in the 1st congressional district and beyond.”

  • endorsed

  • endorsed

  • endorsed

    “I endorse Pastor Chris Butler because he is dedicated to finding solutions without a pride that prevents progress. With a humility I've never before seen in a candidate, he holds his convictions dear and compassionately listens to those who hold different convictions. He's spent so much of his career making difficult decisions that effect people's lives, and as a result he takes others seriously and deeply cares about the people that policy--and political inaction--effects.”

  • endorsed

    “I support this family man because he’s honest, and full of integrity. I have known him since I was in high school and he has never waivered from his faith and who he is. I proudly endorse this candidate.”