Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HR1476
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Full Text of HR1476  99th General Assembly




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2    WHEREAS, The members of the Illinois House of
3Representatives are saddened to learn of the death of James K.
4Polk of Peoria, who passed away on November 8, 2016; and
5    WHEREAS, James Polk was born in Memphis, Tennessee to
6Charlie and Nellie (Jones) Polk on June 13, 1939; he moved to
7Peoria in 1943 and graduated from Peoria High School in 1957,
8where he was an All-State basketball player; he attended
9community college and married Virginia Kyle, Patricia Stokes,
10and Patti; and
11    WHEREAS, James Polk worked for General Motors in California
12from 1961 to 1967; after returning to Peoria, he worked for
13CILCO and ran the YWCA Ashanti Umojia Youth Center before
14joining Caterpillar in 1974; he retired from Caterpillar in
151986 and founded several businesses, including the Balance
16Stone Strategies Group; and
17    WHEREAS, James Polk was a member of the Peoria County Board
18from 1972 to 1976 and from 1982 to 1985; he was a Peoria City
19Councilman for the First District from 1985 to 1993; he was the
20first African American to run and win those positions; he
21served on the Illinois Central College Board of Trustees,
22beginning in 1997 with eight years in leadership positions; he



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1served on the Board of Trustees Greater Peoria Mass
2Transit-City Link from 2007 to just recently; he was on the
3Tri-County Regional Planning Commission for 10 years, serving
4as past Chairman; he was involved with Illinois Central
5College, CityLink, the Peoria Civic Center Authority, the Boys &
6 Girls Clubs of America, the American Community College
7Trustee Association, and the Tri-County Regional Planning
8Commission; and
9    WHEREAS, James Polk helped Carol Moseley Braun in her
10election to the United States Senate as the first black female
11senator, serving as downstate Chairman for her United States
12Senate campaign; he was twice elected to the National
13Democratic Convention and served as a consultant to Chicago
14Mayor Harold Washington; and
15    WHEREAS, James Polk was a recipient of the 2015 Peoria Area
16Chamber of Commerce Tom Connor Service Award, the 2015 Peoria
17Magazines Local Legends, and the 2006 Dr. Martin Luther King
18Commemorative Service Leadership Award; in 2014, he was
19inducted into the African American Hall of Fame; and
20    WHEREAS, James Polk was a member of the Mt. Zion Baptist
21Church, the Peoria Downtown Rotary Club, and the NAACP, where
22he served as Vice-President; and



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1    WHEREAS, James Polk was preceded in death by his son, Kevin
2Polk; and
3    WHEREAS, James Polk is survived by his wife of 17 years,
4Patti; his children, Karen (Billy) Raymond, Jonelle (Daniel)
5McCloud, and Rebecca Polk; his stepchildren, Anika (Henry)
6Florez, and Joshua (Gina) Sterling; his brother, Sam (Jean)
7Polk; seven grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren;
8therefore, be it
11mourn the passing of James K. Polk, and extend our sincere
12condolences to his family, friends, and all who knew and loved
13him; and be it further
14    RESOLVED, That a suitable copy of this resolution be
15presented to the family of James Polk as an expression of our
16deepest sympathy.