Mayor Lori Lightfoot on Monday said a much-circulated email in which she berated an aide was “born out of frustration” and she’s now in “a better place” with her team.
In late January, Lightfoot sent her then-scheduler an email complaining that she doesn’t get enough of what she called “office time.” That’s typically a less structured part of the day when the mayor can think, write or make long-term plans.
While it’s common for politicians to give staff members specific direction, it’s the way Lightfoot delivered her feedback that raised eyebrows in government and political circles. Lightfoot repeated several sentences — one 16 times — to highlight her displeasure over her schedule.
“I need office time everyday!” Lightfoot wrote 16 times in a row in the email, which the Tribune obtained via an open records request.
“Not just once a week or some days, everyday!” she wrote, 10 times.
“Breaks or transition times between meetings are not office time,” she wrote, seven times, in an email that cc’d the mayor’s then-chief of staff and a body person, a personal aide who takes care of a politician’s immediate needs, like providing a favorite snack or making sure they know who they’re about to talk with.
“If this doesn’t change immediately, I will just start unilaterally canceling things every day,” she wrote, five times.
“Have I made myself clear, finally?!” she wrote, 13 times.