Why won’t Alderman Pawar attend a retired teachers’ candidate forum? It seems odd to me.

First of all, I have been hit with some weird WordPress bug this morning which dropped this post earlier today.

For a while it seemed I had lost my entire library of WordPress images.


I have worked it out.

So, let’s try this post again.

I am a five-year member of a north suburban chapter of the Illinois Retired Teachers Association. For years, and way before I joined, the chapter held candidate forums at our luncheon during our frequent election cycles. We invite all candidates, Republicans and Democrats.

Our chapter holds luncheons four or five times a year with speakers on various topics of concern to retired teachers. Retirees are very active and politically aware. The candidates forum usually has the largest attendance.

With the Illinois Governor’s race coming up, we scheduled a luncheon for September and invited all the candidates. They accepted our invite, including Alderman Ameya Pawar. He posted his appearance on Eventbrite.


In fact, the Eventbrite post is a little confusing. It only mentions the Alderman. It doesn’t mention that it is a luncheon in which those attending pay for the food they eat. It seemed to some as if our chapter of IRTA had endorsed the Alderman. Which is not even remotely true.

Shortly after the notice on Eventbrite the Alderman contacted the retirees who have been working hard to organize the event and told them that he was not going to appear.

Although I am an officer in the chapter, I don’t speak for the chapter. But I was asked to contact the Alderman’s people to see what was up. We had Alderman Pawar on our Hitting Left radio show and podcast. I thought he said some good things. I have no other personal history with Alderman Pawar. But I offered to contact his people.

I contacted his schedule guy, Will Pierce.


This is Fred Klonsky. Ald. Pawar apppeared on our radio show, Hitting Left with the Klonsky Brothers and I blog at Fredklonsky.com. I’m also vp of the North Lakeshore Illinois Retired Teachers Association. I understand there is a problem with scheduling the Alderman for our gubernatorial candidates forum and wonder if you can give me a call?

Will wrote back.

Thanks Fred, the Alderman would love to attend but due to the conflicting scheduling request along with a number of outstanding concerns which I have asked and still have not addressed:

-Not receiving a formal invite outlining the format and rules which was promised a while ago.

-Receiving confirmation regarding all other campaigns receiving notice they can not invite guests as it is a closed door event

-Information regarding media credentialing and if media will be invited

Should you have any further questions or concerns, please let me know.


Will Pierce

We organize our luncheons to promote civic engagement. We charge for lunch to cover our costs. It is held in the basement of the Elks Club in Des Plaines.

Many of us take half of our lunch home for dinner.

It is by no means a profitable enterprise.

I am not aware of any other candidate sending us a list of concerns like this for this event or ever before. But,  I’m sure we could have worked it out. We don’t have a policy regarding “media credentialing.” If candidates bring friends, we ask them to pay for their food. We cover the cost of the candidate’s meal. The format changes each time depending on the feedback we get from our members. But it is not complicated. Usually the candidate speaks for a few minutes and then we take questions.

I mean its a retiree luncheon, not a nationally televised debate.

I just don’t get it.

Aderman Pawar is not exactly surging in the polls.

I would have thought that having a chance to speak to a room full of retired teachers would be seen by the Alderman as an opportunity.

But I wish him good luck.

5 Replies to “Why won’t Alderman Pawar attend a retired teachers’ candidate forum? It seems odd to me.”

  1. If the campaign has issues why not try to address them? The guy says you promised something yet never provided it…….sounds like you are just getting sour when they guy says “hey we never got a invite.” Also if you are not involved with the planning of the event then why are you involved? Do you know all the facts?

    1. You are wrong on all counts. I have all the emails. That’s the problem these days. There are emails showing what he got and what he first agreed to.

    2. To Adam Mahoney :

      The NLSRTA did, indeed, provide answers to Mr. Pierce’s questions as they were asked. The organization has, as Fred stated, been holding IL General Assembly Candidates events for many years, and the formal letter has not, in past years, been sent until the beginning of August, and Mr. Pierce was so informed. (Although we did write that we might try for June or July {however, again, Mr. Pierce was given a “heads up” as to this the first week of June, via e-mail}.) All e-mailed communications were received and thus acknowledged by Mr. Pierce.

      As Fred wrote, he was asked to make contact as, since Alderman Pawar recently appeared on his show, “Hitting Left,” we thought he might know Ald. Pawar and, therefore, could speak with him directly. (In my experience, everything usually goes through the candidate’s “people,” and, thus, may not be communicated directly to the candidate himself/herself, so it’s quite possible that the decision to not attend was not made by the Alderman himself, but by his campaign staff.) Also, as Fred mentioned, Fred is an NLSRTA officer (actually, he’s the veep). That’s why he was involved. And, yes, he’s informed of “all the facts.”
      If anything–& if you’ve ever read his blog (& now that you have, I highly recommend that you keep reading it–7,563 subscribers & “class size” of over 4 million can’t be wrong!)–you’d know that Fred does, indeed, check out facts.
      (He’s not into “alternative truth,” if you know what I mean!)

      Whatever the reasons for this mishigoss (if you don’t know this fun word, Google it), NLSRTA also wishes Ald. Pawar good luck (as it does all the other candidates–again, we don’t endorse).

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