Bradley alumna takes seat in Congress

A Bradley alumna won the special election of the 2nd Congressional district of Illinois on Tuesday, securing yet another seat in Congress by a Bradley grad.

Democrat Robin Kelly ’77, ’82 won the election against Republican nominee Paul McKinney by a margin of 89 percent to seven percent, the Washington Post reported. The election was held to replace former Representative Jesse Jackson, Jr.

Kelly now joins other Bradley grads in their commitment to Congressional leadership. These include Congress Rep. Aaron Schock ’02, former Congressman and United States House of Representatives Minority Leader Bob Michel ’48 and former Congressman and current Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood ’71.

“I think [Kelly’s victory] speaks volumes to the leadership opportunities that Bradley offers,” said Brad McMillan, executive director for the Institute of Principled Leadership in Public Service. “It shows our long history of developing high level leaders to serve the country.”

McMillan, who knows Kelly through her service on the institute’s advisory board, said he was thrilled when he found out the election results.

“Not only do I have great respect for her as a person, but I think she represents bipartisan common sense leadership,” he said. “To have someone with that leadership style in Congress is fabulous.”

The 2nd district includes Chicago’s South Side and the southern suburbs. Kelly was sworn in yesterday, the first time the district has been represented since Jackson’s departure in November.

“I just think that Robin has done [politics] the right way,” McMillan said. “She has public service in her blood, so the next natural step for her is to serve in Congress.”