The Cook County Green Party represents all Greens in Chicago and Cook County, Illinois. As the county organization, it is distinct from the various city and county local Green chapters. CCGP is one of several county-level Green Party groups in Illinois. All Green Party members in Illinois also belong to the Illinois Green Party and the Green Party of the United States. A complete list of Illinois Green chapters is here.

The Cook County Green Party officers for 2019 are:

Chair:  Rita Maniotis

Vice Chairs:  Julie Samuels, Jim Madigan

Secretary:  George Milkowski

Treasurer:  Bruce Samuels

Four Pillars and Ten Key Values

The Cook County Green Party is a diverse group of individuals dedicated to advancing the Greens’ Ten Key Values in our political and social lives. Through the Illinois Green Party, Cook County Greens are affiliated with the Green Party of the United States and are part of the international Green movement.  The Global Greens have affiliated Green parties in 72 countries around the world!

Cook County Greens Support 10 Key Values: These are principles that guide and unite Greens from around the world. The first four of these — grassroots democracy, social justice, ecological wisdom, and nonviolence — are known as the “pillars” of the Green Party.

The Green Party’s Ten Key Values:

  • Grassroots Democracy
  • Social Justice
  • Ecological Wisdom
  • Nonviolence
  • Decentralization
  • Community-Based Economics
  • Feminism
  • Diversity
  • Responsibility
  • Future Focus

Cook County Green Party Bylaws

AS AMENDED –February 4, 2019

ARTICLE 1 Name, Mission, and Functions

1-A. Name. The name of this organization shall be the Cook County Green Party (CCGP).

1-B. Mission. The mission of the Cook County Green Party is to advance the green movement within Cook County and beyond, based on the Ten Key Values (Ecological, Wisdom, Social Justice, Grassroots Democracy, Nonviolence, Decentralization, Community-based Economics, Feminism, Respect for Diversity, Personal and Global Responsibility, Future Focus), through political and non-political means.

1-C. Functions. The functions of the Cook County Green Party shall be fulfilled through actions including but not limited to:

1. Supporting Green Party candidates and recruiting qualified Green Party members to run for office.

2. Raising the visibility of the Cook County Green Party by publicizing our activities, position on issues and candidates for office in the news media and on our website.

3. Developing suggested common campaigns on major issues of countywide importance in which Green chapters and all Greens throughout Cook County will be invited to participate.

4. Developing a newsletter and media relations to increase the visibility of Green Party actions and positions.

ARTICLE 2 Membership

2-A. Definition. The Cook County Green Party shall be composed of all Members of the Illinois Green Party who are residents of Cook County.

2-A-1. Diversity. No person may be excluded from voting membership in the Cook County Green Party based on race, ethnicity, social-economic status, national origin, age (if at least 13 years of age), sex, gender, gender identity, disability, sexual orientation, military status, religious affiliation and philosophical belief or lack thereof, citizenship, or criminal record (including incarceration).

2-B. Authority. The Membership is the highest decision making body of the Cook County Green Party. All formal decisions made by the Membership, at an Annual Membership Meeting or Special Membership Meeting are binding upon all committees and officers of the county party.

2-C. Standing. A member of the Cook County Green Party shall be considered a member in good standing if they are considered a member in good standing of the Illinois Green Party, and shall be eligible to participate in the decision-making processes of the Cook County Green Party if they are eligible to participate in the decision-making processes of the Illinois Green Party, unless otherwise restricted from participating, by a Membership vote as allowed by these bylaws.

2-D. Removal. Any member can be removed for cause from Membership in the Cook County Green Party by a 3/4 secret ballot vote of the Membership. The member affected shall have a right to hear the charges against them, the right to be heard and to present evidence, and the right to confront witnesses against them and present witnesses their defense.

2-E. Automatic Removal. A member will automatically be removed from the membership list when 1) the party receives notice that the member is no longer a resident of Cook County, 2) the party no longer has valid contact information for the person, or 3) the member becomes an officer or candidate of another statewide, established, political party.

2-F. Reserved Powers. Only the Membership may approve changes to the content of the Bylaws.

ARTICLE 3 Membership Meetings

3-A. Annual Meetings. The Cook County Green Party shall have an Annual Membership Meeting every calendar year, and may have additional Membership Meetings in a given year as called for by the Membership or the Executive Committee. Notice shall be sent to the membership by email at least 30 days prior to the meeting. Notice shall be sent by U.S. mail at least 14 days prior to the meeting to those members who do not have email. Notice shall also be posted on the Cook County Green Party website.

3-B. Quorum. Quorum for all Membership Meetings shall be at least 7 members of the Cook County Green Party.

3-C. Decision-Making. Unless otherwise stated in these bylaws, decisions will be made by consensus, or if a consensus cannot be reached, a vote will be taken. In order to pass, a proposal must receive twice as many “yes” votes as “no” votes, and more “yes” votes than “no” and “abstain” votes combined. Proposals in ranked choice format will require the final position to achieve a majority for action to be taken.

3-D. Special Membership Meetings. Members may petition the Executive Committee to hold a Special Membership Meeting. Such petition must consist of verifiable signatures (including electronic signatures) from no less than 10% of the total number of members, or 50 members, whichever number is smaller; and must include a date, time, location, and agenda for the proposed meeting. Notice for Special Membership Meetings must be sent by the Executive Committee to the Membership at least 14 days before the meeting date.

ARTICLE 4 Executive Committee

4-A. Definition. The Executive Committee is the primary day-to-day governing body of the Cook County Green Party. Executive Committee decisions are subject to review by the Membership. The Executive Committee shall consist of five officers: Chair, two Vice-Chairs, Secretary, and Treasurer.

4-B. Qualifications. All officers must be members in good standing of the Illinois Green Party and of the Cook County Green Party.

4-C. Selection. All officers will be elected to annual terms, using ranked choice voting, either at the Annual Membership Meeting, or by a mail-in and/or online process, as provided for by rules promulgated by the Membership. The position of Chair shall be limited to two consecutive terms.

4-D. Chair. The Chair shall convene meetings; serve as the primary spokesperson for the Cook County Green Party; and in conjunction with the Secretary, shall handle mail, e-mail, and phone calls on behalf of the CCGP.

4-E. Vice-Chairs. The Vice-Chairs shall be secondary spokespersons for the Green Party of Chicago, and shall assist other Executive Committee members in performing their duties.

4-F. Secretary. The Secretary shall keep and distribute the minutes of Membership, Executive Committee, and Central Committee meetings; in conjunction with the Chair, shall handle mail, e-mail, and phone calls on behalf of the CCGP; and shall be the primary tabulator of any votes conducted at Membership Meetings.

4-G. Treasurer. The Treasurer shall manage all of the financial matters of the CCGP, including disbursement and management of CCGP funds. The treasurer shall:

1. Prepare reports on the finances of the CCGP for Membership Meetings;

2. Submit the financial records of party operations to the State of Illinois as necessary by law;

3. Submit the financial records of the party operations to reporting bodies as necessary by law;

4. Ensure legally required records are maintained for all funds collected.

4-H. Vacancy.  In the event of a vacancy in one of the positions of officers, the Executive Committee shall have the power to appoint a Cook County Green Party member in good standing to the vacant position to serve out the unexpired term by consensus or by majority vote.  Consensus or majority voting may be held by teleconference, e-mail, or by face-to-face meeting.

ARTICLE 5 Central Committee

5-A. The Cook County Green Party Central Committee shall be considered a Standing Committee of the Cook County Green Party, constituted in the manner provided for under Illinois statute. It consists of Township Committeemen in the suburbs and Ward Committeemen in the City of Chicago. The chair of the Cook County Green Party shall be the chair of the Cook County Central Committee. In the absence of the chair, the Central Committee shall vote for a chair pro tem. A meeting of the Cook County Central Committee may be held after five days notice to all Township and Ward Committeemen. The Central Committee may meet in person or via electronic means.

5-B. The Central Committee shall operate under state statute to the extent required to remain in compliance with certain statutory provisions. The primary directive document for the County Central Committee shall be these bylaws, augmented by a separate rules document specifically for the County Central Committee.

5-C. The Central Committee is considered organizationally subservient to the Membership of the Cook County Green Party.

5-D. All other statutory committees formed under the auspices of state statute covering jurisdictions entirely or partially within Cook County shall be subject to the conditions of these bylaws and also to the bylaws of the Illinois Green Party. Such committees shall also be directed by separate rules documents specifically for those committees.

ARTICLE 6 Standing and Ad Hoc Committees

6-A. The Executive Committee may create standing or ad hoc committees, such that upon creation the composition, nature of leadership, and any specific rules for that committee are delineated.

6-B. Unless otherwise specified by committee rules, chairs of standing and ad hoc committees may be appointed and/or removed by the Executive Committee per the standard proposal process.

ARTICLE 7 Procedures for Nomination and Endorsement of Candidates for Public Office

7-A. The Cook County Green Party shall use the rules provided for in Illinois Green Party bylaws for defining official Green Party candidates for public office.

7-B. The Cook County Green Party may endorse candidates for any countywide office, the Cook County Board of Review, and for the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District. The Cook County Green Party may also endorse candidates in areas of the county for which caucuses of Members within the county cannot be held. The Membership or the Executive Committee, but no other body, may make such an endorsement on behalf of CCGP. Any such endorsement vote must be preceded by reasonable notice being given to members living in the relevant jurisdiction. Any such endorsement must be consistent with the rules provided for in Illinois Green Party bylaws for defining official Green Party candidates for public office and shall be done in consultation with the ILGP members resident within the affected jurisdiction.

7-C. Nothing in these bylaws shall be interpreted to supersede the autonomous authority of ILGP affiliated chapters to issue endorsements.

ARTICLE 8 Amendment

8-A. These bylaws may be amended, and any other organizational decision may be taken, at any Membership Meeting. Bylaws amendments at Membership Meetings require that the proposed amendments are substantially submitted in writing, pursuant to the notification requirements of the meeting.

8-B. These bylaws may also be amended, and any other organizational decision permitted under these bylaws may be made, by the Membership via a mail-in and/or online vote, according to rules promulgated by the Membership.