Awards and Achievements

How we're making the Assessor's Office more accessible and fair.

Since taking office in 2018, Assessor Kaegi has brought fairness, ethics, and transparency to the Assessor’s Office with a vision focused on operational changes and technological upgrades. These awards and achievements are a testament to the office's commitment to streamlining processes for property owners and making it easier to access our services. Please read the award details below. 

National Association of Counties (NACo)

2022 Conversations about Racial Equity and Real Estate Initiative
Over the past two years, the Assessor's Office conducted a series of discussions about how race impacts our work as assessors and the ways it has had historic and current impacts on local real estate markets. Through these virtual "Racial Equity and Real Estate" conversations, experts from Princeton University, The University of Chicago, and Duke University joined local community developers, realtors, and artists for a series of rich and unique discussions. 

National Association of Counties (NACo)

2022 Senior Citizens Aren't Getting Any Younger
The Assessor’s Office administers property tax exemptions for residential property owners in Cook County. These exemptions provide significant savings to senior homeowners. Prior to Assessor Fritz Kaegi’s administration, seniors were required to apply for the Senior Exemption every year, proving they are still over the age of 65. Assessor Fritz Kaegi championed a bill that amends the Illinois Property Tax Code so that a homeowner who has been granted a Senior Exemption will not need to reapply for the exemption each year.

National Association of Counties (NACo)

2022 Bringing Fairness and Transparency in Property Assessments
To provide the best services to homeowners in Cook County – the largest market-based assessment jurisdiction in the United States – Assessor Fritz Kaegi tasked the Data team with the development of a new valuation model. The goal of this was to improve assessment accuracy, equity, and transparency. Data staff created a new in-house residential valuation model using free software and open-source algorithms that was first introduced in 2019. 

International Association of Assessing Officers (IAAO)

2021 Public Information Award: Communication During a Global Pandemic
With the Stay at Home Order enacted by the State of Illinois, the CCAO had to close down five offices including the main downtown branch at the start of the assessment season. The CCAO’s Communications Department went into emergency response mode and developed a public information plan to convey information digitally while still considering communities with less access to technological tools.

National Association of Counties (NACo)

2021 Achievement Award: File Smarter, Not Harder: How the Assessor’s Office Went Digital
Up until 2020, the assessment of more than 1.9 million parcels still relied heavily on paper applications and forms. For the first time in the history of the Assessor’s Office, applications for both property tax exemptions and assessment appeals were fully accessible online. Under the leadership of Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi, the office made a significant leap forward in the technological modernization of the third-largest assessment jurisdiction in the nation.  
 

STATESCOOP 

2020 Local IT Innovation of the Year Award: Implementation of Online Appeals
With SmartFile, property owners can file appeals online with the Assessor's Office through a dynamic, modern platform. Even during stay-at-home restrictions during COVID-19, the public could file an appeal and drastically reduce the need for in-person visits to offices. 

 

 

 

2021 IAAO Award Video

Watch this video that highlights the 2021 IAAO Public Information Award winners. These persons and jurisdictions accepted their awards during the 2021 IAAO Annual Conference that took place last summer in Chicago and was co-hosted by the Cook County Assessor's Office.