Thursday, March 12, 2015

Leo Man Frank Considine '39 - Chicago's Greatest Business Leader Fought for Meigs Field

Frank and Nancy Considine  " One of the best liked "fellows" in Leo" The Oriole 1939
Richie Daley's Progressive vandalism

Frank W. Considine is a Leo Man*.  Frank played on the 1937 football team that attracted more than 125,000 fans to Soldier Field.  He was a tackle.  His grades at Leo are impressive, especially when one considers that the Irish Christian Brothers who staffed Leo in its infancy were outstanding scholars and exacting teachers. Frank played for the great Whitey Cronin ( F. Considine front row l.) on the football squad that played before the largest crowd to a attend an America football game( Pro, College, Semi-pro, high school) in history. Leo was trounced by Austin High School 26-0.

Frank Considine learned team in football, but it was the extra-curricular work he performed as a Caddie at South Shore Country Club, where Mr. Considine's business acumen was honed.  He learned the value of human association - contacts, "I Know A Guy!"  More business is conducted on the links than in the board rooms of American commerce, than any meeting conducted with a stenographer present - today it would be a recorded disc, chip or some other techno gizmo. Back then it was a man's word, followed up with deeds.

Frank Considine was already formed by the Leo Testament - Facta Non Verba: Deeds not Words. He was ahead of the game and learned to walk away from the guys whose honeyed words could never match future deeds.

After taking his degree at Loyola of Chicago, Frank Considine went to war as a Navy officer aboard a WWII destroyer.  The deeds, like so many combat veterans, were enough.

You can link on to a Loyola University tribute to Frank Considine that chronicles his brilliant career in business from glass to aluminum.  Considine was genius at bringing the American canning industry to businesses overlooked by his less astute predecessors.  So great was Considine's influence in American Commerce, that President Jimmy Carter tapped Frank Considine to lead the Egypt-US Business Council.  Frank Considine helped Anwar Sadat westernize Egypt's economy after the death of Soviet-allied Nasser. In fact two other Leo Men joined Considine in those efforts.

If you take a look at the Forbes biography that I have pasted below, you will note the many boards, religious, charitable and civic, chaired by Frank W. Considine. That is impressive. However one incident in Chicago history most defines Frank W. Considine and that was his clash with Richard M. Daley over the closing of Meigs Field.

Daley's Progressive Alliance demanded Chicago go Green, as well as undermine cops, take down the projects for the sake of Valerie Jarret, Allison Davis and the hogs at the trough and turn its back on the breeders in the neighborhoods.

Green Space is easy - vandalize a municipal resource ( Meigs Field) used by affluent people and say it will be a Peoples Park -Northerly Island. . In the process, put the Chicago business community that this in no longer Richard J. Daley's Chicago.  Daley started to agitate for the close of Meigs in 1994, while Frank Considine who negotiated the McCormick Expansion sought another compromise with Daley. Progressives never compromise, it's a John Dewey thing concerned with 'outcomes.'

In 2003, on a bright March morning, pilots flying into Meigs Field with dollars were diverted.  There were huge Xs torn into the concrete by back hoes operated by at least two Leo HS graduates and members of IUOE Local 150.  No kidding.

Meigs Field was no more. Frank Considine was outraged.  He is Leo Man, but one tempered by Catholic charity and business grace,.  Frank Considine was gracefully outraged over this malicious vandalism. Frank Considine knew that Chicago's economy would never recover from this act of radical socialism and juvenile hubris.  He acted with a team.  His was the first voice condemning Daley for this idiocy.  He did so without my colorful bile, mind you.

The Civic Committee's action came in the form of a mid-July letter to Mayor Daley by Frank Considine, chairman of the group's Airport Task Force. A copy of the letter was obtained by CRAIN'S from outside sources.
Initially, the committee had intended to remain neutral on the Meigs plan, Mr. Considine wrote. "However, many of our members are concerned that the closing of the airfield, which is a valuable amenity for Chicago, will have a negative impact on Chicago's overall commercial attractiveness."
The letter goes on to argue that Meigs serves 150,000 business travelers a year, many of them headed for conventions at McCormick Place. "Keeping Meigs open will send an important message that you are committed to maintaining Chicago's downtown business vitality and accessibility," it concludes.
Here is what I find fascinating - Daley had already 'become' a Progressive and the green space vision was only a feint; the real thumb in the eye was a provocative Screw You to the powerful businessmen and nothing more.  It is interesting to note that Daley's SDS WeatherGirl and PR Maven Marilyn Katz and the career grifter and public money mooch CTA President Forrest Claypool took the lead in this effort:

Katz - Marilyn Katz, a media consultant who is spearheading the city's public relations campaign for the park plan, said she's in the process of contacting hundreds of civic groups-and argued that such an effort is both needed and proper.
Lost patronage
Most Chicagoans don't know that Meigs has lost 40% of its patronage in the last 15 years, and is shut down all or part of 100 days a year, she said.
"The administration didn't wage a public relations war (before), so nobody knows anything," Ms. Katz said. "I don't think they understood how the governor was going to use this issue," she said, charging that many letters from CEOs were prompted by Mr. Edgar

Claypool - "We thank them for their concern, but there are two conflicting visions, and there can be no compromise on a park," said Chicago Park District Supt. Forrest Claypool, whom Daley designated to speak to reporters.
Claypool bristled when asked why the administration was adamant about ruling out any compromise, even one that could involve softening of positions on a new Bears stadium."This is fatally flawed. The mayor isn't interested in trading chips to support a state tax-subsidized stadium for the Chicago Bears," said Claypool, whose agency now manages Soldier Field.

Daley would never trade chips?  Really Forrest?  The oily Claypool is still on the public tit.

Marilyn Katz and Forrest Claypool did more to damage Chicago business than any Guy Fawkes Mask wearing anarchist ever dreamed of doing by lighting tire fires.  Rahm, Daley, Claypool and Katz are all part of Progressive pack of jackals that sold off Chicago's assets, destroyed its neighborhoods, gelded a once proud and independent news media and continue to reap millions of dollars while Roseland, Englewood, Austin and Gresham reap the whirlwind.

Frank Considine tried to keep Meigs open.  The Meigs vandalism took place in the shadow of Soldier Field, where Bill De Correvont  and Austin HS rolled over Leo in November 1937.  Considine fought Daley and legions of Mammon the Progressive.  Like Leo against Austin the score told some of the story.

Frank Considine has pumped millions of dollars in support of Leo High School - he funded the Frank and Nancy Considine Caddie Scholars Program, funded a computer based algebra program that was state of the art in 1998, and tuition assistance that has graduated hundreds of African American kids from Leo, who went on to great college and vocational careers.

Frank Considine, kept Chicago's Civic Opera running out of his own pocket.

Frank Considine helped found the Big Shoulders Fund

Frank Considine fought to keep Meigs Field in operation

Frank Considine learned to walk away from the honeyed words of grifters who never intended to match their words with deeds.

God Bless Chicago's Greatest Businessman.  Image result for Frank Considine and Meigs Field

God will take care of the grifters and so will Chicago voters very soon.

*Mr. Frank W. Considine serves as Vice President for the Lyric Opera of Chicago. Mr. Considine served as the President of Rexam Beverage Can Americas Inc. from 1969 to 1988 and Chief Executive Officer from 1973 to 1988. He serves as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Loyola University, Chicago. He served as an Honorary Chairman of American National Can Company since 1990. He served as Chairman of the Board of American National Can Company, a subsidiary of American National Can Group, Inc. from 1983 to 1990. He served as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Loyola University Chicago (LUC) and of LUHS/LUMC. Mr. Considine serves as Director of IMC Global Inc. He serves as the Board of Trustees of the Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago. He serves as a Director of SEI Information Technology. He has been Director of Rexam Beverage Can Americas Inc since April 14, 1999. He serves as Member of the Board of Directors at the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago. He served as a Director at Loyola University Health System (LUHS) since 2006. He served as Director of Scotsman Industries, Inc. since April, 1989. Mr. Considine served as a Director of American National Can Group, Inc., a packaging manufacturer in April 14, 1999. He serves as Vice Chair of the Archdiocese of Chicago Finance Council. He was the recipient of LUC's Damen Award in 1982. In October 1985, he was inducted into the Chicago Business Hall of Fame. He received the National Distinguished Service Award of Hull House in 1986. In 1987, he was presented with the Sword of Loyola, LUC's highest award. Also in 1987, the Boy Scouts of America recognized him with the Distinguished Citizen Award. The Chicago Association of Commerce and Industry honored him in 1988 with its first City of Chicago Volunteer Leadership Award. Mr. Considine earned his doctorate from Loyola in 1943. He was awarded an honorary doctor of law degree from LUC in January 1986 and received an honorary degree of humane letters from Northwestern University in 1987.

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