Chicago’s power couple making difference in the city’s future: Lori Lightfoot and wife Amy Eshleman

Lori Lightfoot is residing in Logan Square on Chicago’s Northwest side with her wife Amy Eshleman (ex-former employee at Chicago Public Library) and their adopted daughter (Vivian Lightfoot). They have been together for more than 16 years and got married in 2014 as a homogenous couple. Their devotion to each other assembled them in building their project “My Chi my Future”, an out-of-school opportunity ecosystem. Amy being wife has propped up in Lori’s (her spouse’s) administrative activities including the shaping of policies that benefit the residents of Chicago.

Lori Lightfoot-the Chicago Mayor 2019, winner of 50 wards election for the Chicago Mayor is weighed down for her re-appointment in the 2023 election as per voting aftermath published on 1st of March, 2023. Lori Lightfoot was the first gay woman who served as mayor since 2019. Her effort in crisis management was condemned by the public of Chicago City for which she could not regain her second term as Mayor with only 17.1% of the total vote. 

Lori Lightfoot and her rise in election

Lori Lightfoot (Lori Elaine Lightfoot) 56th Mayor of Chicago is an American democratic politician as well as an attorney who is also a member of the Democratic Party. She is the first openly gay African American to possess legislative power. She was a senior equity partner in Litigation and Conflict Resolution at Mayer Brown’s Group.

Lori Lightfoot was born to Elijah and his wife Ann Lightfoot on August 4, 1962, in Ohio, Massillon. She was the youngest daughter after four sons to her parents with a lot of potential.

My father Elijah worked three jobs during my childhood to keep the lights on and food on the table, so I didn’t get to see him often. But when I did, he made time to help me get ready for school and take me to get lunch—memories that I cherish to this day.

Even though he had his own dreams of becoming a lawyer, he devoted nearly all of his time and efforts to support our family and give us a better life than his own.

I am where I am today because of my father. And I will be forever grateful to him for his love, support, and sacrifices. So, to all the fathers and father figures out there who continue to make sacrifices to keep their families strong: thank you and #HappyFathersDay.

Image Source: Instagram

Lori’s father worked as a janitor and local factory worker while her mother was a healthcare aide and a school board member. She grew up on the west side of the city in a financially progressing family.

Lori was a multi-talented graduate of Washington High School. She was elected as high school class president three times and she was a trumpet player, choir singer, point guard of a basketball team, volleyball and softball player, and PEP club member and yearbook editor. She organized a boycott lunch program to get flavorful pizza even when she was punished with detention.

From Humble Beginnings to a Trailblazing Legal Career

In 1984, she obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Michigan, where she worked various jobs as a resident assistant, cook, and factory worker during the summer to cover her university fees. While studying, her older brother, Brian Lightfoot, was arrested and accused of a bank robbery and shooting a security guard. After briefly working for members of Congress Ralph Regula and Barbara Mikulski, she decided to pursue a career in law.

She was awarded a full scholarship to attend the University of Chicago Law School, where she earned her Juris Doctor degree in 1989. During her time at the law school, she served as the president of the student body and successfully led a campaign to ban a law firm from campus for making discriminatory comments towards a student. Additionally, she played on an intramural flag football team and worked as a clerk for Justice Charles Levin of the Michigan Supreme Court.


Upon graduation, Lori became a practicing attorney at Mayer Brown’s law firm and served as Assistant U.S. Attorney from 1996-2002. Likewise, she was appointed as Chief administration of the police department office of the professional standard for 2 years. Then, Lightfoot worked in the Chicago Office of Emergency Management and Communications before being hired by Mayor Richard M. Daley as deputy chief of the Chicago Department of Procurement Services.

While investigating Chicago corruption with her boss, Mary Dempsey, Lightfoot and Dempsey drew Mayor Daley’s ire.

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Their investigations included probes of then-Governor of Illinois Rod Blagojevich’s associate Tony Rezko and prominent Daley donor Elzie Higgin bottom. Lightfoot left the Department of Procurement Services after a few months, subsequently returning to Mayer Brown. She has suggested that she left the department due to dismay at corruption in City Hall.

In 2019 she announced her public candidacy for Mayor and she won with more than 73% of the total vote winning all 50 wards of Chicago City. She took oath on May 20 as the first black LGBT mayor of Chicago, the second female mayor of Chicago city.

Who is Amy Eshleman?- the first lady of Chicago

Amy Eshleman is the spouse of Lori Lightfoot, the current Mayor of Chicago. She is an American national who hails from Sterling, III. Amy is the incumbent first lady of Chicago. She is the wife of Chicago mayor Lori Lightfoot and the mother of their adopted daughter, Vivan Lightfoot. Amy Eshleman was born on 31 December 1961 (age 51). S/he was born in Sterling, Illinois. She is a white American.

amy eshleman wife

She completed her high school at Sterling High school. A 1980 graduate, Eshleman also played the school girl’s basketball team, which was the first girl’s basketball state championship in Illinois. She has her bachelor’s degree from Miami University in Ohio and worked on two congressional staff from 1984-88. 

Eshleman is an educator and has over 20 years of experience working in schools. She has worked as a classroom teacher, a reading specialist, and an administrator in both public and private schools. Eshleman has also been involved in education policy and has served on various education-related boards and committees. As the First Lady of Chicago, she has focused on supporting Chicago’s youth, particularly those who come from underserved communities. She has launched initiatives to promote reading, mentorship, and mental health awareness.

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Additionally, Eshleman has been involved in efforts to combat gun violence in the city. Amy is a retired Chicago Public Library associate administrator. She served there for the whole past of Chicago public library commissioner Mary A. Dempsey’s occupation from 1994 to 2012. Throughout her career, she assisted in promoting YOUmedia, a digital media hub for teens that began in 2009 at the Chicago Public Library’s Harold Washington office.

Amy Eshleman: An Educator, Advocate, and Community Champion Committed to Empowering Chicago’s Youth

2012, Amy became the program leader for education for the urban libraries council. ULC is a membership organization of the leading public libraries in the U.S. and Canada. She is leading a national initiative funded by the MacArthur Foundation and the Institute of Museum and library services to create a network of new learning spaces for teens in 24 cities across the country.

Giving back to her community is a way of living life of Amy. She is a board member of Rock for Reading and volunteers at the Frances Xavier Warde School and Gordon tech high school. Amy serves on the board of trustees of Steppenwolf theatre as well as co-chairs its public square committee.

She advocates her projects through social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter where she posts about the events of community service activities.

How did the power couple met-Lori Lightfoot and wife Amy Eshleman Relationship 

Amy and Lori dated each other for several years of marriage. Amy is called the “First lady of Chicago” because her husband (Lori) is the Mayor.

Lori and Amy initially met through Mary Dempsey, who was working with Lori during her time in Mayor Richard M. Daley’s administration in Chicago. Both Mary and Amy were employed at the Chicago Public Library, with Mary serving as the commissioner in charge of the center. While working with the former mayor Daley, they met each other. The couple got married after the legalization of same-sex marriage in Illinois.

They are pretty open up about their love life and romanticizing relationship since they got married on 1 June 2014. Amy’s posts on her social media reflect her love and compassion for Lori. Whether it’s her birthday or any auspicious occasion of her life, she makes Lori feel the most loved.

Amy nowadays rare their daughter Vivian as a full-time mother ensuring the safety and optimal belongingness of their family.

About their Adopted daughter: Vivian Lightfoot

Vivian was born on November 2008 in Chicago. The detail of her biological parents is confidential. It is unsure to predict the exact timing of the adoption of Vivian by the power couples. However, the couples immensely shower their love on their only child Vivian. She is currently studying in a private school in Chicago and is found to be keen on sports just like Lori in her early school.

amy eshleman family

In May 2020, Mayor Lori Lightfoot created a TikTok video to announce Chicago’s virtual citywide high school graduation ceremony, in which she showcased her dance moves. The video gained attention on social media, but Vivian did not like it which created tension between them for which Lori and Amy both apologized to her. They are concerned about her interests and hobbies as they avoid the things that are hated by their child. Love and affection between them are incomparable they always show their love and regard for each other.