Welcome to the Prairie State

Date(s) - 12/06/17
6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

International House Assembly Hall

Hosted by
Prairie State Society

Welcome to the Prairie State

Wed, December 6, 2017 6:30 PM – 8:30 PM

Welcome to the Prairie State introduces students and the University of Chicago community to both the State of Illinois and Prairie State Society (PSS), one of Harris School of Public Policy’s newest student organization.

Our inaugural event features state representative Will Guzzardi (D-Chicago) in conversation with recently retired Assistant Majority Leader in the Illinois General Assembly, Elaine Nekritz (D-Northbrook).

Moderated by student Patrick Hanley, the panel discussion will address the unique and influential characteristics of the Prairie State including: geographic and demographic divisions in state politics, political culture of Springfield, and governing under a strong partisan establishment at a time of unprecedented and bipartisan anti-establishment momentum.

Our Panelists:
Will Guzzardi
is a state representative from the 39th District, which includes parts of Logan Square, Avondale, Hermosa, Belmont Cragin and Portage Park neighborhoods in Chicago. He’s been in the legislature since January of 2015. At age 30, he’s one of the youngest members of the Illinois House.

As one of the leading progressive voices in Illinois politics, Will has continued that fight since his election. He introduced and passed the $15 minimum wage legislation in the Illinois House (before it was vetoed by Gov. Rauner). He has introduced legislation for free tuition at public universities for every Illinois student. He has fought for and passed major reforms to the criminal justice system, protections for immigrants, expanded rights for LGBT Illinoisans, and transformational new clean energy policies.

Elaine Nekritz