Heather Steans

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Heather Steans

b. May 8, 1963

Illinois, State Senator (2008-)

Heir to a banking fortune made by her father, Harrison Steans, Heather was managing her family foundation when then-State Sen. Carol Ronen announced her plans at the end of 2007 to retire mid-term, the next year. With a short deadline to gather petitions to get on the ballot for a special election, only Steans, who seemed tipped off before the announcement, and Northside Democracy For America (NDFA) activist Suzanne Elder had enough volunteers to help get signatures for ballot petitions.

The ensuing election divided a once united North Lakefront, between traditional organization leaders on Steans' side and the remaining elements of the once strong Independent Voters of Illinois and the new NDFA supporting Elder. Ultimately Steans won the election, 63-37%.

While Steans had a primary opponent in 2010, she easily overcame the challenger and has since generally been unopposed.

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