Lewis Jordan to step down as head of Chicago Housing Authority

Credit card controversy leads CHA chief to resign

June 14, 2011

City Room

(File/CHA)

Lewis Jordan will step down as CEO of the Chicago Housing Authority on June 30th, following questions about his use of official credit cards.  Mayor-elect Rahm Emanuel had recently reappointed Jordan as the head of the CHA, a position he's held since 2007.

Jordan became the center of controversy during the last two weeks when it was revealed that he used CHA credit cards to purchase gift cards and flowers for employees and spent nearly $15,000 during a three year period on business-related meals. 

Last week, Mayor Emanuel refused to give Jordan a vote of confidence, and also removed two cars and the security detail that had previously been at Jordan's disposal. 

The Emanuel administration is currently conducting a review of credit card use across all of its departments and agencies. 

As CEO of the CHA, Jordan was charged with completing the controversial $1 billion dollar Plan for Transformation, which led to the demolition of the city's high rise public housing complexes and calls for the replacement of mixed-income neighborhoods in their place.  The plan is scheduled to be completed by 2015 under a revised timeline.

Prior to taking over the CHA, Jordan ran the Housing Authority of Cook County, as well as the housing program in Rockford, IL.

Last month, the CHA announced it was considering a controversial policy requiring all residents of public housing in the city to undergo drug tests and remain drug free as a condition of tenancy.  Currently, only residents of mixed-income developments are required to submit to such tests.