A Sun-Times series spotlighting the people and professions that keep Chicago thriving.

Now that a new city ordinance has taken effect, the new challenge is spreading the word and helping workers overcome fear, members of Arise Chicago, a workers’ rights group, said Tuesday.
Shantonia Jackson and other certified nursing assistants who are members of SEIU have been desperately needed during the pandemic that has ravaged care homes.
Charlayne Guy investigated food poisoning outbreaks. Deeanna Mendoza inspected restaurants and schools, among other places. Victoria Romero worked with HIV clinics. Now all three AFSCME members are squarely focused on COVID-19.
Cecilia Renteria is trying to recruit more women to the painting trade.
Jason Reed’s 22-year career includes numerous construction projects at local hospitals.
“I was meant to do this,” said Joe Fitzgibbons, a member of IBEW Local 134 for 16 years. “I love it.”
The handiwork of painter/taper Denise Jones, who used to live in Cabrini Green, can be seen all over the city.
Mike Angus left the business world to drive a garbage truck — a job he unexpectedly loves.
As power engineer coordinator for the Chicago Transit Authority, Moore is ready to respond quickly to electrical issues impacting the city’s 244 miles of ‘L’ tracks.
The operating engineer keeps the world’s 6th busiest airport running smoothly through a massive infrastructure of systems that control everything from the lights to the hot water.
The Plumbers Local 130 member is part of the fifth generation to work for Chas F. Bruckner and Son Plumbing.
Clarise Evans sees the impact of Chicago’s gun violence on a daily basis. She’s now pushing for higher wages at her hospital.
Kittra Headtke tells girls and women: “If it’s something you love, do it no matter who you are.”