SPRINGFIELD—Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood) was sworn in today for her fourth term as a member of the Illinois Senate. Senator Lightford will also continue serving as Senate Assistant Majority Leader during the 97th General Assembly, a post she has held since 2009.


“Over the last decade, I’m proud to have had the opportunity to represent the citizens of the 4th District and I’m privileged to have the opportunity to continue that service,” Lightford said.  “As a member of the Senate President’s leadership team, I have a unique opportunity to help shape state policy. It is my desire to continue pushing a progressive agenda that benefits the people of the 4th district and the State of Illinois.”

Senator Lightford’s legislative career is highlighted by her passionate support for promoting quality educational and development programs for Illinois’ youth. As Chair of the Senate Education Committee from 2005 until 2008, Senator Lightford was able to pass legislation instituting specialized curricula in bullying prevention and a universal Preschool program aimed as helping at risk three and four year olds. Through her leadership as Assistant Majority Leader, the Senate has passed legislation reforming the charter school system to allow for more charter schools both in Chicago and downstate.

Lightford has also been responsible for the passage of legislation critical to consumers. Last year, she passed sweeping reforms to the payday loan industry to protect consumers from predatory lending practices. In 2006, she passed a bill that gradually increased the minimum wage each year until 2010, helping thousands of low-income citizens throughout Illinois to be able to provide for their families.

Moving forward, Lightford is committed to putting Illinoisans back to work and helping the state recovery from fiscal crisis. She also intends to investigate ways to improve the state’s education system as a member of an Education Reform Committee that began meeting earlier this year.

“The next two years are critical to our economic recovery,” Lightford said.  “We need to continue fighting for jobs and pushing for education reforms. If we are successful in accomplishing these things, the future is bright for Illinois.”

Lightford was first elected to the Illinois Senate in 1998. She was the youngest African-American woman to be elected to the Illinois Senate.  Last November, she was re-elected for the fourth time. The 4th District includes part of Chicago’s West Side and much of suburban Cook County, including Bellwood, Berwyn, Broadview, Forest Park, Hillside, Maywood,  Melrose Park, North Riverside, Oak Park, River Forest, Riverside, and Westchester.



Category: News Releases

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