February 11, 2012
Joint Statement on 2012 – 2013 City Vehicle Sticker Art and Design Contest
“Recent events have unfortunately taken attention away from the goal of the long-standing city vehicle sticker design contest, which was to encourage students to express themselves and the values we all share as Chicagoans and participate in their government,” said City Clerk Susana Mendoza.
“Prior to announcing the change in design, the family of the runner-up was contacted. Although saddened by the circumstances of how it happened, at the time the runner up was proud to accept the honor of having her artwork represented on the Chicago vehicle sticker. However, as a result of the unwanted media and public scrutiny and criticism of her artwork that soon followed, the family of the first runner up has now requested that their child’s artwork not be used on the 2012 – 2013 city vehicle sticker. After a face-to-face meeting with me, we agree that this is the correct action to take and I respect their decision,” continued Clerk Mendoza.
“While our daughter truly enjoyed participating in the design contest and was proud to see Chicago select her as the first runner up, what should have been a happy accomplishment in her life has now turned sour. We met with Clerk Mendoza about our decision and thank her for her support and understanding of our concerns. We request our privacy at this time and will be making no further comments on this issue,” said Marty and Maria Henehan, parents of the sticker contest runner up student.
“I accept responsibility for the long-established process of selecting the city sticker design. However, I don’t want to put any other child through what our entrants this year have gone through. Therefore, in order to keep these events from being a further distraction and to allow for the timely printing of the 2012 – 2013 city stickers, the City Clerk’s Office will design this year’s sticker in-house. All finalists will receive their savings bond awards,” said Clerk Mendoza.
“We are performing a review of the sticker design contest process and will learn from this experience. Should we decide to continue this contest, details will be made available well in advance of the 2013 – 2014 vehicle sticker season,” said Clerk Mendoza.