• NASW-IL Staff

Emanuel “Chris” Welch selected as first Black Illinois House Speaker


SPRINGFIELD, IL—The National Association of Social Workers, Illinois Chapter (NASW-IL) wants to extend our congratulations to Emanuel “Chris” Welch who was tapped by house lawmakers in Springfield today to replace former Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan and becoming the first Black speaker of the house (LINK). A longtime supporter of social workers and the NASW-IL, Speaker Welch has been chief sponsor or sponsor of numerous NASW-IL initiatives including bills to expand the number of school social workers in Illinois schools; allowing LCSWs to bill Mediciad, and the landmark youth-in-care college tuition waiver bill allowing at-risk youth access to free college in Illinois.

Speaker Welch is a two-time recipient of the NASW-Illinois Chapter Legislator of the Year Award.

The NASW-Illinois Chapter congratulates Speaker Welch on his new responsibilities on this history-making occasion. We look forward to a continued collaboration in his new position as Illinois Speaker of the House.

The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) is the largest membership organization of professional social workers in the world, with over 120,000 members. The NASW-Illinois Chapter is one of the association's largest chapters with over 5,000 members in Illinois alone. NASW strives to advance social work careers, grow social work businesses, and protect the profession.

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