American politician and school administrator
Paul Gust Vallas Sr. (VAL-iss; born June 10, 1953) is an American politician and former education superintendent. He served as the superintendent of the Bridgeport Public Schools and the Recovery School District of Louisiana, the CEO of both the School District of Philadelphia and the Chicago Public Schools, and a budget director for the city of Chicago. As a school superintendent, Vallas was noted for his embrace of privatization and charter schools. A member of the Democratic Party, Vallas has unsuccessfully sought elected office several times. Vallas was the runner-up the Democratic primary of the 2002 Illinois gubernatorial election. He ran as the Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor in the 2014 Illinois gubernatorial election. Vallas was a candidate in the 2019 Chicago mayoral election. He was also most recently the runner-up in the 2023 Chicago mayoral election. After finishing first in the initial round of that election without securing a majority, Vallas faced Brandon Johnson in a runoff election in which Vallas was defeated by Johnson.
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