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Illinois House Speaker Chris Welch Recommended to Serve as Committeeman

Illinois House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch was unanimously recommended to serve as the new Proviso Township Committeeman in a meeting held this evening of the Executive Committee, replacing the late Karen Yarbrough.

With the support of every local mayor, labor leaders from throughout the state, and active Democrats throughout the township, the Proviso Township Democratic Organization (PTDO) recommended to the Cook County Democratic Party that Speaker Welch be named Proviso Township Committeeman. Their recommendation is expected to be ratified by the full Cook County Democratic Party on Monday.

“Karen Yarbrough was a trailblazer for our region who worked hard each and every day to grow our party and ensured that local residents knew that our party stood up for working people,” said Welch. “It is an honor to follow in her footsteps and to have received such unanimous support from my friends and neighbors.”

Welch was born and raised in Proviso Township where his deep roots have motivated his work in the community for over 20 years. Before being elected State Representative, Welch served on the Proviso Township High School Board after graduating from Proviso West, where he played baseball. He and his wife are raising their two children in the community.

PTDO President Clarence Thomas, who stepped in initially to fill the role of Committeeman, understood that Welch could carry on the legacy of Karen Yarbrough, while also bringing new ideas to the party and engaging new members.

“We were saddened by the loss of our dear friend Karen,” said Thomas. We were so close, and Karen left huge shoes to fill. The entire organization believes that Speaker Welch is best able to serve as Committeeman and continue making Proviso Township a strong, united organization..”

Cook County Board Chair Toni Preckwinkle congratulated the Speaker and PTDO on what could be a game-changing appointment.

“Speaker Welch and I have a longstanding working relationship,” said Preckwinkle. “He has always been a trusted friend and staunch advocate. We both fight passionately and fervently for our party and our people. I am proud to have him join Cook County Democrats. I look forward to working with the Speaker and the party in supporting Proviso,  electing more Democrats, and supporting a successful campaign for Biden Harris 2024.”

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