Katherine Cloonen

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Katherine Cloonen
Kate Cloonen.jpg
Illinois House of Representatives District 79
In office
2013 - Present
Term ends
January 10, 2017
Years in position 2
Base salary$67,836/year
Per diem$111/day
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 4, 2014
First electedNovember 6, 2012
Next generalNovember 8, 2016
Term limitsN/A
Bachelor'sBall State University, 1976
Master'sNational College of Education, 1984
ProfessionTeacher, Small Business Owner
Office website
Katherine Cloonen is a Democratic member of the Illinois House of Representatives, representing District 79. She was first elected to the chamber in 2012.


Cloonen earned her bachelor's from Ball State University in 1976 and her master's from the National College of Education in 1984. Her professional experience includes owning and operating JK Steel Erectors, Inc. for the past twenty-one years and teaching music in the Reddick and Herscher schools.[1]

Committee assignments

2015 legislative session

At the beginning of the 2015 legislative session, Cloonen served on the following committees:

Illinois Committee Assignments, 2015
Agriculture & Conservation, Vice chair
Elementary & Secondary Education School Curriculum Policies
Intermodal Infrastructure
State Government Administration
Veterans' Affairs


At the beginning of the 2013 legislative session, Cloonen served on the following committees:


Campaign themes


Cloonen's campaign website listed the following issues:[2]

  • Fighting for Jobs
Excerpt: "Kate started her own small business and knows what it means to create jobs. She will work to promote our region as a great place to do business, passing legislation that helps businesses put people back to work and revitalize our economy."
  • Making Legislators Take a Pay Cut
Excerpt: "Helping to get Illinois back on the right track requires doing the right thing. At a time of economic challenges, Kate will not only make state legislators take a pay cut, she’ll make it harder for them to raise their pay in the future."
  • Demanding Fiscal Responsibility
Excerpt: "To rein in spending and make government pay its bills, Kate will reform Illinois’ budget process and help cut waste and inefficiencies, forcing government to protect vital services and spend taxpayer dollars wisely."
  • A Strong Voice for Gun Rights
Excerpt: "Our Second Amendment rights are a way of life in our communities. As an advocate for law-abiding gun owners, Kate will continue to fight for our rights and work to bring concealed carry to Illinois."



See also: Illinois House of Representatives elections, 2014

Elections for the office of Illinois House of Representatives took place in 2014. A primary election took place on March 18, 2014. The general election was held on November 4, 2014. The signature-filing deadline for candidates wishing to run in this election was December 2, 2013. Incumbent Katherine Cloonen defeated John W. Howard in the Democratic primary, while Glenn Nixon ran unopposed in the Republican primary. Cloonen then defeated Nixon in the general election.[3][4][5][6]

Illinois House of Representatives District 79, General Election, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngKatherine "Kate" Cloonen Incumbent 50.2% 16,362
     Republican Glenn Nixon 49.8% 16,240
Total Votes 32,602


See also: Illinois House of Representatives elections, 2012

Cloonen won election in the 2012 election for Illinois House of Representatives District 79. Cloonen was unopposed in the March 20 Democratic primary and defeated Glenn Nixon (R) in the general election, which took place on November 6, 2012.[7][8][9]

Illinois House of Representatives, District 79, General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngKatherine Cloonen 50.1% 21,287
     Republican Glenn Nixon 49.9% 21,196
Total Votes 42,483

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Cloonen is available dating back to 2012. Based on available campaign finance records, Cloonen raised a total of $266,520 during that time period. This information was last updated on July 23, 2013.[10]

Katherine Cloonen's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 Illinois State House, District 79 Won $266,520
Grand Total Raised $266,520


Cloonen won election to the Illinois House of Representatives in 2012. During that election cycle, Cloonen raised a total of $266,520.



In 2014, Cloonen's endorsements included the following:[11]

  • The Illinois Observer


See also: State legislative scorecards and State legislative scorecards in Illinois

Legislative scorecards are used to evaluate elected public officials based on voting record. Some scorecards are created by political advocacy groups with a focus on specific issues, while others are developed by newspapers and are broad in scope. Scorecards are meant to be used as a tool for voters to have a quick picture of whether their views align with a particular legislator's record.

Because scorecards can be specific to particular issues or general to a state’s legislative term, for example, each report should be considered on its own merits. Each entity that publishes these reports uses different methodologies and definitions for the terms used.

An overview for scorecards in all 50 states can be found on this page. To contribute to the list of Illinois scorecards, email suggestions to scorecards@ballotpedia.org.

Please see our writing guidelines if you would like to add results from an individual scorecard to this legislator's profile.


In 2014, the Illinois State Legislature was in session from January 29 through June 2.[12]

Legislators are scored on their votes on bills that "impacted the social work profession and their clients."


In 2013, the Illinois State Legislature was in session from January 9 through May 31.[13]

Legislators are scored on their stances on conservative issues.


Cloonen has a husband, Gary.[14]

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Political offices
Preceded by
Lisa M. Dugan (D)
Illinois House of Representatives District 79
Succeeded by