Toni Preckwinkle joins crowded field for Chicago mayor

CHICAGO (AP) - Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle says she's running for Chicago mayor.

Preckwinkle would be the city's first female, African-American mayor. She announced her bid Thursday at a hotel where Chicago's first African-American mayor, Harold Washington, launched his campaign in 1982 and where former President Barack Obama announced his 1996 bid for Illinois Senate.

Preckwinkle says she would fight for working-class people.

She joins a crowded field of candidates to replace Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who said earlier this month he won't seek a third term.

Gery Chico, an attorney and former chief of staff to Mayor Richard M. Daley, also announced his candidacy Thursday. Chicago previously was president of the Chicago Park District and Chicago Public Schools.

The mayoral election is Feb. 26, with an April 2 runoff if needed.