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By Rebecca Vonderlack-Navarro, PhD, Education Director 

With plans to soon retire from her historic post as the first female Latina State Superintendent of Education, the Forum extends deep gratitude to Dr. Carmen Ayala for her tireless leadership and esteemed successes in the face of adversity.

Dr. Ayala has served as the State Superintendent since early 2019, when she was soon confronted with guiding Illinois schools through the difficult COVID-19 pandemic and charged with revitalizing academic improvement for the state. Now at the end of her tenure, Illinois is at a decade-high in its high school graduation rates—a factor driven by a rise in graduation by Black... Continue Reading

Friends and neighbors, 

Happy New Year! I wish you all a year filled with love, laughter, and cheer! 

There is plenty for us at the Forum to cheer about…we are celebrating our quinceañera in 2023. Fifteen years of building the Latino community's power, influence, and leadership. It takes a... Continue Reading

By Nina Sedeño, Immigration Policy Analyst

Earlier this month, the Illinois Latino Agenda (ILA) convened its first meeting of the “Welcome to Illinois” coalition. The purpose of this new coalition is to provide a space for those responding to the ongoing migrant situation to share information, provide updates, and determine if there are synergies to teamwork.

As of mid-October, Illinois has received over 3,600 asylum-seekers from Texas and Florida. State, city, and local organizations have worked around the clock to meet the immediate needs of these families, providing everything from food and shelter to medical screenings and legal advice. Early on, community organizations expressed a need for coordination of these efforts and... Continue Reading

The Latino Policy Forum hosted its annual Latinos on the Move fundraiser,Latinos on the Move: Driving Growth In Illinois,on Friday, November 4, 2022.

After two years of hosting LOTM virtually, the event was back in-person at the Union League Club Continue Reading

Friends and neighbors, 

It's heartbreaking to learn about the growing number of victims in Florida due to Hurricane Ian. As rescue crews go door-to-door to search for survivors and help in recovery, I consider myself blessed in that my family is among the lucky ones. My father and his wife, who live in central Florida, sheltered in a hospital for two nights. I waited anxiously, not hearing from them, to learn that in their haste they had forgotten their phone at home.  It was an anxious two nights. I breathed a sigh of relief when I learned that... Continue Reading

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