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AIA ILLINOIS
LEGISLATOR OF THE YEAR

Photo Credit: John Berry 

Leader Jehan Gordon-Booth

Leader Jehan Gordon-Booth received two Legislator of the Year awards in 2019AIA ILLINOIS 2019 LEGISLATOR OF THE YEAR and also, Landmark Illinois 2019 President's Award for Legislator of the Year. Both for her outstanding strides in historic preservation legislation.

"Leader Gordon-Booth was the obvious choice for legislator of the year. For almost a decade, advocates from AIA and Landmarks worked with passion and persistence to build the case for historic tax credits. It started with a single project in downtown Peoria and grew to neighborhoods in five cities. She knew from early firsthand experience what tax credits could accomplish for the rest of the state but was also a shrewd tactician.

 

While we might have been impatient at times wanting to see it happen sooner, she was unflappable. There was a road map to passage and she guided us along the way to make sure we knew who to talk to and what questions to answer. Over and over, it looked like we might not succeed and every time she told us “don’t worry, just be ready.” I never heard her say the words “I’ve got this” but she didn’t have to. I felt confident because she was confident and her colleagues placed her in a position of leadership.

 

The last 48 hours of session when the bill passed were some of the most exhilarating in my 25 years of legislative work. From the green light it’s go time message to the mad dash of writing an amendment to the handoff of language outside the House chamber with moments to spare, she navigated a technical and substantial bill through the gauntlet with poise and precision. It’s a story I won’t soon forget and a legacy that will make a difference through projects that generations of Illinoisans will enjoy."

From AIA Illinois' Past EVP, Mike Waldinger, Hon. AIA, AIA Colorado