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Kimberly A. Lightford

Personal data
Date of birthMay 10, 1968(age 48)
Place of birthChicago, Illinois
Political partyDemocratic
Professionpublic administration
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Illinois's 4th district
Assumed officeNovember 20, 1998
Preceded byEarlean Collins

     Home | Office Holder | Kimberly A Lightford

Kimberly A. Lightford is a Democratic member of the Illinois Senate, representing the 4th district since 1998. She is Assistant Majority Leader and also serves on Labor, Education, Executive, Financial Institutions and Redistricting committees. She is also chair of the Senate Black Caucus and co-chair of the Illinois Commission of Intergovernmental Cooperation.

Senator Lightford’s legislative career is highlighted by her support for promoting quality educational and development programs for Illinois’ youth. As Chair of the Senate Education Committee from 2005 to 2008, she was able to pass legislation providing specialized curricula for bullying prevention and a universal preschool program for at risk three-and four-year-old children.

As Assistant Majority Leader, Senator Lightford has been an advocate for education reform. Because of her leadership, the Senate has passed legislation reforming the charter school system to allow for more charter schools both in Chicago and downstate. In addition, Senator Lightford has worked to pass legislation aimed at re-enrolling high school dropouts. The Illinois Hope and Opportunity Pathways through Education (IHOPE) program will offer classes to students who have dropped out of high school, allowing them a second chance at earning a diploma.

Lightford has sponsored legislation to assist state workers by requiring all state agencies to notify the Department of Human Rights 30 days before affecting any layoff. This legislation allows state employees who are targeted for layoffs to receive the same assistance that is now provided to employees in the private sector.

Lightford attended Proviso East High School before going on to Western Illinois University and earning a Master's degree in Public Administration (MPA) from the University of Illinois at Springfield. She also completed an internship with the Illinois Department of Corrections. After graduation, she accepted a position with the Department of Corrections in Chicago. She successfully ran for Maywood Village Trustee after encouragement from her state representative. When State Senator Earlean Collins announced plans to retire, Lightford was elected in March 1998 and began serving in November, two months before the traditional inauguration, when Collins retired.

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