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NLEN Mourns The Death of Cook County Commissioner Dennis Deer

Updated: 5 days ago

Updated July 10th, 2024.

North Lawndale Employment Network joins numerous residents and organizations across North Lawndale and the County of Cook, in mourning the loss of a great friend and great servant leader, Cook County Commissioner Dennis Deer. Commissioner Deer passed away on Sunday, June 23rd, 2024 at 51.  

Like his predecessor and mentor, the late Cook County Commissioner Robert Steele, Commissioner Deer was a dedicated champion of NLEN’s programs and services and a regular fixture at NLEN events. Dennis Deer was NLEN’s first U-Turn Permitted facilitator and served as a valued member of our NLEN’s Board of Directors, for 10 years. As Commissioner of the 2nd District, he regularly collaborated with NLEN and other local political leaders, including US Representative Danny Davis, advocating for the Federal Fair Chance Act. Commissioner Deer regularly connected his constituents to NLEN’s programs and events and was a regular friendly face on our campus at large and small events. He especially loved supporting NLEN’s annual Thanksgiving Meal Giveaway, where he’d join in alongside other volunteers in passing out hundreds of turkeys and Thanksgiving meals for those in need. Dennis was a good friend and beloved community advocate. 

Commissioner Deer dedicated his life and career to public service and advocating for quality healthcare across the district. Commissioner Deer was an especially dedicated advocate for improving access to mental health care and used his role to advocate for expanded services within the Cook County Health system.  

While we mourn his death, we will continue to remember and honor his legacy and impact as a dedicated public servant and devoted husband and father. We send our condolences to his staff and family during this difficult time.  

NLEN commemorated Commissioner Deer’s life and legacy during the Peace in the Streets Block Party Saturday, July 29th from 12-3PM at our 1111 S. Homan Ave campus, and NLEN's Director of Facilitation and Organizational Learning Jose Wilson and NLEN's Outreach and Engagement Specialist Richard Lawrence joined residents, and City, County, and State leaders at Commissioner Deer's memorial service on Tuesday, July 9th at Living Word Christian Center in Forest Park, Illinois. We thank everyone who spoke and shared their memories of Commissioner Deer and his lifelong dedication to public service.

With our deepest condolences,  

The Employees and Board of North Lawndale Employment Network  

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