Hi, I’m Thurgood Brooks. I was born and raised in Rock Island and I love our city. I grew up here and attended -Rocky- Rock Island Senior High School and as you can see from the colors of my campaign, I’m quite passionate about my alma mater. I studied history and political science in college and researched the reconstruction period, the private prison industry in the U.S. and how to improve police-community relationships. I was naturally drawn to these topics and was glad to have the opportunity to pursue them.
I graduated from Western Illinois University with a Bachelor’s Degree and have been deeply involved in the Rock Island community since 2015, both in my employment and in my volunteer service as a community activist. What drives me are service and community. They have been my focus all my life and I’m fortunate to be able to serve in a number of roles that speak to that.
As a banker, I worked hard each and every day to provide the best support for my clients. Coaching at Rocky, I love my work with young athletes to help them succeed in their sport. But I also can have a supportive role in their struggles growing up. Coaches and mentors can be key in helping them build a strong future.
My work at Tut Cities Education & Entertainment is related to that too, but in a slightly different way. As a co-founder of Tut Cities, we work as a community organization that understands the needs of young people and millennials. We create opportunities for them to express themselves. That can be in music, arts, sports, activism – a lot of different areas, and we focus on pride in our community. Our Vote Matters works to register 100,000 voters and I feel strongly that we need to empower members of our community to vote. It is our most important democratic tool, so everyone who reads/hears this: Please vote and urge others to vote!
I’m also a Family Advocate at the Family Advocacy Center in Rock Island, which means that I provide family advocacy and counseling to local children and families. High quality service and empowering that population is key in this work. And with what’s happening in terms of race and police brutality in our country, I felt we needed to look at our own community first and founded The Resolution in June of 2020. We are a multi-racial group that works to build cohesion in our community and we work to address the relationship between local residents and law enforcement. I have learned so much working with these populations. There are differences between them, but together they make up our community. I understand families and children, because I work with them every day. I get the challenges of young people and athletes in high school, because I work with them all the time. I worry about young people and millennials being really isolated in our community, particularly now with the pandemic. All of these are issues in our community where help and support is needed and, most importantly, where we need solutions.
My focus is on building Rock Island together and that means building our community so that it serves all its residents better, empowers them, and makes them proud to say: I live in Rock Island. I’m convinced that we can do better. That’s why I’m running for mayor. I want us to get to the work of building Rock Island together. I want us to build a clean & green economy that gives people good jobs and lets them live in a healthier environment. That includes attractive and affordable housing, and that will help us become a healthier and more stable community. We have the advantage of being a highly diverse community, and diversity generates creativity in all areas of life. We need that. We also must make sure that all residents have a say in the future of our city. I will make sure of that.
Current city leadership has firmly looked away from Rock Island areas that struggle most. I will change that. My leadership will be strategic, focused and persistent. I will lead the development and carry out the strategic plans that we urgently need to serve all members of our community. I’m ambitious for Rock Island. I know we can do better.
Together, we will build a stronger, healthier, and more vibrant Rock Island.