Alumna Represents Chicago

By Nicole Cisneros McKeen

The words of Frank Sinatra’s famous song reflect the sentiments of Tammy Mayberry ’97 who agrees that Chicago is “My Kind of Town.”

She is devoted to the Second City, and it’s not because she hasn’t been anywhere else. On the contrary, she spent most of a decade working in the nation’s capital. It’s just that she feels she has found her true call­ing — and the best use of her considerable skills — in Chi­cago.

Mayberry earned her political stripes during her years in Wash­ington, D.C. After receiving a degree in psy­chology at IC, with politics and legal stud­ies minors, she earned a law degree at George Washington University and worked in the administration of President Bill Clinton. She later managed a staff on Capitol Hill as a legislative director and then served as legislative counsel in the U.S. Senate.

But after years of political success in the House and Sen­ate, Mayberry decided to use her experience in a different venue. Her job as a lobbyist for the City of Chi­cago in Wash­ington, D.C., draws on all of her hard-earned skills.

“We’re im­pacting policies and how they affect constituents,” Mayberry says. “We’re affecting legislation, and we’re affect­ing people.”

As a City of Chicago employee, Mayberry is able to lobby suc­cessfully for grants with players in Washington because she speaks their language and has a legislative pedigree. She has worked to preserve funding for Chicago, helping save communities devastated by foreclosures and aban­donment to protect the property values of the remaining residents.

The best part of her job, Mayberry says, is providing real and tangible ben­efits for communities.

For Mayberry, her work in the nation’s capital was a prelude to the transforma­tive work she does today. She uses her Capitol Hill experiences every day, and she is seeing positive results.

Read more about IC alumni who work behind the scenes in the world of politics at these links:

Georgia Bills ’74 represented Massachusetts  State Representative Jerry Parisella while he was deployed in Iraq.

Les Bernal ’91 is executive director of Stop Predatory Gambling.

Dan Lamb ’86 has served as a top adviser to U.S. Con­gressman Maurice Hinchey since 1997.

Rob Bluey ’01 is the director of the Center for Media and Public Policy at the Heritage Foundation

John Balduzzi ’01 is the president of The Balduzzi Group, a political consulting firm in Washington, D.C.

Rob Flaherty ’13 served as campaign communi­cations director for Ithaca mayor Svante Myrick.

Sam Adams ’11 interned in Senator Olympia Snowe's office.