She Runs Illinois 2022 — Suzy Glowiak Hilton, candidate for IL Senate, District 23
She Votes Illinois is pleased to feature Suzy Glowiak Hilton, incumbent, running for IL Senate, District 23. Follow our series, She Runs Illinois 2022!, leading up to election day as we showcase and uplift the voices of Illinois women running for public office in the upcoming election, November 8, 2022.
Tell us about yourself
I was first elected to the Illinois State Senate in 2018 and have lived in Western Springs with my family for over 25 years. I grew up in the south suburbs of Chicago and earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Illinois Institute of Technology and a master’s degree in manufacturing engineering from Northwestern University. After college, I pursued a successful career in engineering consulting and currently manage an engineering consulting firm located in Oakbrook.
Prior to joining the State Senate, I served two terms as a Western Springs Village Trustee. During my time on the Western Springs Village Board, I served as Chair of the Public Works and Water Committee and fought to improve water quality with the construction of a new water purification plant. I also served on the Planning and Zoning Committee and as Chair of the General Government Committee.
I’ve also been active in my community. When my children were young, I was an active school volunteer. I am also a member of the First Congregational Church of Western Springs where I served on the Properties Committee and as a board member of the Women’s Society.
What are the priorities that you intend to focus on in office?
One of my biggest priorities is ensuring that we protect women’s reproductive health rights. I was outraged by the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, which restricts abortion access for millions of women across the country. However, I’m grateful that abortion remains safe and legal in our state because we took action to ensure we would be ready if that day came. I’m proud to have voted to protect a woman’s right to choose in Illinois and will continue to fight to make sure that decisions regarding reproductive health remain between women and their doctors.
Another issue I intend to focus on in Springfield is enacting common-sense solutions to prevent gun violence. We have seen far too many gun violence tragedies across the country and recently right here in Illinois. I’m currently co-sponsoring legislation to keep assault weapons off our streets and will continue to look for ways to eliminate these mass shootings and keep our communities safe.
How have you involved residents in your decision-making process? How do you plan to involve more people in the future?
I ran for the Illinois Senate to give back to my community, and I’m committed to always listening to my constituents to ensure I’m an effective representative for them in Springfield. I’ve already knocked on hundreds of doors during this campaign and one of the first things I ask residents about are the issues that matter most to them. It’s essential that I know what problems people are facing so I can help solve them in Springfield. I’ve also been committed to hosting and attending community events to make sure residents have the opportunity to meet me and talk to me about issues that are important to them. As State Senator, I’ll continue to engage with residents as much as possible to make sure that I take their thoughts into account as I make decisions in Springfield.
Racially motivated violence against Asian Americans is a longstanding issue in the U.S., but incidents have been on the rise. How will you plan to understand impacted communities’ fears and needs in order to work towards ensuring their safety?
I’m committed to doing everything I can to make sure all Illinoisans can feel safe. The rise of racially motivated violence against Asian Americans in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic has been horrifying and it’s essential that the perpetrators of these actions are held accountable. It’s important that we examine our hate crime laws to ensure they are as comprehensive as possible. I also think education is an important component in eliminating racism in our country. I’m proud to have voted for the Teaching Equitable Asian American History (TEAACH) Act, which made Illinois the first state in the country to require Asian American history to be taught in our schools.
Black women are about three times as likely to die from a pregnancy-related condition as white women in Illinois. With abortion bans and restrictions increasing across our nation, how do you plan to create better protections for people of color knowing that more forced births will likely exasperate the Black maternal health crisis?
The most important thing we can do to help curb maternal mortality is to increase access to care. This is particularly true in communities of color, which disproportionately deal with healthcare deserts. As State Senator, I’ve fought to improve healthcare access statewide, including prenatal and postpartum care for pregnant women. We have made some major strides toward improving maternal health outcomes, including allowing for the licensure of midwives and coverage of midwifery services under Medicaid. It’s also essential that we continue to protect a woman’s right to choose in the wake of the overturning of Roe v. Wade. I’m proud that we were able to ensure abortion remains safe and legal in Illinois and will continue to do everything I can to defend a woman’s right to bodily autonomy.
The crisis of domestic violence is closely linked to the widespread and growing use of guns by abusers. What solutions do you advocate to reduce gender-based gun violence in Illinois?
We need to be doing everything we can to ensure the safety of survivors of domestic violence. During my time in the Senate, I’ve passed multiple laws intended to prevent violence against survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking, including measures to ensure their addresses are kept confidential. The Illinois State Police currently have the authority to deny or revoke FOID cards for individuals with domestic violence convictions and I think it’s critical that they continue to follow up on these cases to ensure the safety of survivors of abuse. I look forward to continuing to explore ways that we can promote safety and keep guns out of the hands of abusers.
It’s been an honor to serve in the Illinois Senate for the past four years and I look forward to a second term. I approach my job as State Senator in the same way I approach my career as an engineer: by looking at all of the data and making an informed, scientific decision about what’s best for my district and for the State of Illinois. I’ll always do everything I can to best represent my constituents and bring responsible, ethical leadership to Springfield.
If you would like to learn more about Suzy Glowiak Hilton and her platform or volunteer for her campaign, please check out her website at suzyforsenate.com. Don’t forget to follow her on Facebook at @suzyglowiakhilton. Reach out today and help make a difference in the upcoming 2022 election.
(The information contained in this post is provided only as general information and does not imply an endorsement by She Votes Illinois.)