First Meeting of Illinois Bicentennial Commission

Governor Bruce Rauner today convened the first meeting of the Illinois Bicentennial Commission and unveiled the official Bicentennial logo at the Old State Capitol. The co-chairs of the Bicentennial Commission were also announced.

“From Kaskaskia to Vandalia and now Springfield, this has been a long time coming, and I am honored that you can be a part of this effort to honor our past while paving the way for our future,” Governor Rauner said. “From our rich history to our rich soil Illinois has changed over the last two centuries but our focus is still much the same. We’re still deeply rooted and invested in our children’s education, moving Illinois forward through innovation and technology and working together to make our great state the best place to live in the country.”

At the meeting, Governor Rauner and Bicentennial Office Executive Director Stuart Layne unveiled the official bicentennial logo. The logo was created and donated by Ben Olsen, of Schaumburg PR agency 3 Monkeys and Aardvark Studios. The navy and gold design with 21 gold stars represents Illinois’ entry as the 21st state in the union. The colors are a nod to the State of Illinois’ official seal.

“The sunburst in the middle of the state outline portrays the impact Illinois has made on the country and the world over the past two centuries and the bright future we aspire to for the next 200 years,” said Layne.

The meeting was called to order by the Commission’s newly appointed co-chairs:

Gloria Castillo is president and CEO of Chicago United, a not-for-profit organization that promotes multi-racial leadership in business and parity of economic opportunity for people of color. Through her 20 years of leadership in Chicago, Gloria served on the boards of The Field Foundation of Illinois, Intersect Illinois, MALDEF, City Colleges of Chicago, Chicago Workforce Investment Council, World Sports Chicago, and The Chicago Network.

Randy Dunn is president of the SIU System and is based at SIU-Carbondale. He previously worked as president at two other state institutions and as the State Superintendent of Education. He has served on several committees and boards including the American Council on Education, American and Illinois Associations of School Administrators, Illinois Board of Higher Education, and Illinois Association of School Boards.

The diverse group of leaders from all across the state that serve on the Commission include 40 members appointed by the Governor, 11 members appointed by legislative leaders and several non-voting state agency representatives.

On September 20, 2016, Governor Rauner signed Executive Order 2016-11 to create the new Illinois Bicentennial Commission and the Governor's Office of the Illinois Bicentennial to lead the planning for the celebration of the state's 200th birthday.

For more information visit the Illinois Bicentennial Celebration website: