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SSMMA bids Park Forest Mayor John Ostenburg fond farewell

Mayor John Ostenburg at Park Forest’s 2015 4th of July parade. Photo courtesy of the Village of Park Forest.


The South Suburban Mayors and Managers Association bids Park Forest Mayor John Ostenburg a fond farewell. After serving nearly 30 years in various roles, he did not seek reelection.

When it comes to vision, leadership and service, Mayor Ostenburg raised the bar for many of us.

He provided dedicated leadership to SSMMA as its president from June 2016 until May 2017, and afterward as immediate past president. He was also SSMMA’s longtime Chicago Southland Housing & Community Development Collaborative chairman, and a member of the Board of Directors for the Cook County Land Bank Authority since its inception. Since early 2019, Ostenburg served as chairperson for the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus, which includes 275 municipalities in the greater metropolitan Chicago area. In 1985 and 1997, he served as a trustee in Park Forest.  And in 1992, he served as a representative in the Illinois General Assembly.

On the national level, he has been a long-time member of the Community & Economic Development Committee of the National League of Cities and also serves on the NLC First-Tier Suburbs Council. He was named to the then 40-member NLC Race, Equity, And Leadership (REAL) Council when it was created in 2015, and served as a representative of suburban municipalities. Ostenburg is now the immediate past co-chair of the REAL Council, which  was incorporated into the formal structure of the NLC in 2017.

When it came to vision, leadership and service, Mayor Ostenburg raised the bar, and we are all the better for it.

So long and farewell, Mayor “O.” Best wishes for a healthy, fruitful and joyous retirement. Your legacy will be missed but not forgotten.

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