Statewide Community Advisory Group

Diverse Voices Advising Equality Illinois

The Equality Illinois Community Advisory Group consists of LGBTQ individuals and allies from across the state to engage with Equality Illinois in the policy development and agenda building necessary to secure and advance LGBTQ equality, social justice, and intersectional action in Illinois.

With members from all corners of Illinois–Carbondale to Chicago, Rock Island to Champaign–and from a wonderful diversity of backgrounds and experiences, the Community Advisory Group informs, advises, and challenges us about opportunities for and obstacles to lived equality and inclusion in every part of Illinois. In addition to advising Equality Illinois, advisory group members have made broadcast appearances, been interviewed for news articles, and written columns about LGBTQ issues in the news.

The Community Advisory Group grew from the summer listening tour of Equality Illinois CEO Brian C. Johnson in 2016 that took him to 12 communities throughout the state. He heard troubling tales about a lack of access to affirming healthcare, the treatment of LGBTQ people in our criminal justice system, and the need for an inclusive educational system.

The Community Advisory Group contributes to Equality Illinois’ understanding of these and many more issues that LGBTQ Illinoisans experience every day. And, at a time when many LGBTQ individuals are feeling isolated, anxious, and frustrated about policymaking, Equality Illinois is dedicated to ensuring our policy agenda is developed through the consistent and ongoing engagement of many voices, perspectives, and lived experiences.

For more information about the Community Advisory Group, please get in touch with Equality Illinois Director of Public Policy Mike Ziri.


2019 Equality Illinois Community Advisory Group

Grayson Alexander (Cook County)

Laurie Bell (McLean County)

Tara Bell-Janowick (Williamson County)

Jan Christian Bernabe (Cook County)

Cindy Burke (DuPage County)

Vinny Cascio (McHenry County)

Bob Chikos (McHenry County)

Kristin Dahnert (Lake County)

Ebonie Davis (Cook County)

Brandy Donaldson (Rock Island County)

Samantha Ellison (Cook County)

JoAnne Geigner (Champaign County)

Susan Haarman (Cook County)

Carter Harms (Cook County)

Justin Michael Hendrix (Champaign County)

Charlie Jungwirth (Cook County)

Elise Malary (Cook County)

Elizabeth Malone (Jackson County)

Ken Mejia-Beal (DuPage County)

Len Meyer (McLean County)

J. Marcos Peterson (Cook County)

Emme Porter Dewitt (Cook County)

Kathleen Robbins (Champaign County)

Jasmine Routon (Champaign County)

Michelle Royal (Rock Island County)