State of Illinois
90th General Assembly

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 1                       SENATE JOINT RESOLUTION
 2        WHEREAS, The death of a former colleague is  an  occasion
 3    of sadness for this General Assembly; and
 4        WHEREAS,   Grace   Mary  Stern  began  her  distinguished
 5    government career by being elected to the Lake  County  Board
 6    in 1966 and in 1970 she was elected as Lake County Clerk, the
 7    first  Democrat to be elected countywide since the Civil War;
 8    and
 9        WHEREAS,  In  1982,  as  the  Democratic  candidate   for
10    Lieutenant  Governor,  and  as  the first woman slated by the
11    Democratic Party  for  Statewide  office,  Grace  Mary  Stern
12    brought  a  joyous  enthusiasm to the campaign and she gained
13    prominence for her hard work and  thoughtful  expressions  on
14    the  issues  confronting the people of the State of Illinois;
15    and
16        WHEREAS, Continuing her call to public service,  in  1984
17    Grace  Mary  Stern  was  elected  to  the  Illinois  House of
18    Representatives of the 84th General Assembly and served  with
19    distinction  in  that body in the 85th, 86th and 87th General
20    Assemblies by serving as Chairman of the Committee on  Mental
21    Health and ably serving on the Committee on Judiciary II, the
22    Committee   on   Elementary   and  Secondary  Education,  the
23    Committee on Small Business and many other committees; and
24        WHEREAS, In 1992, Grace Mary Stern  was  elected  to  the
25    Illinois  State  Senate of the 88th General Assembly, serving
26    on the Committee on Local Government and  Elections  and  the
27    Committee  on  Judiciary  and  was  frequently sought for her
28    opinions and counsel on issues of importance to all people of
29    Illinois; and
30        WHEREAS, Grace Mary Stern was  known  for  her  wonderful
31    sense of humor and in particular by adapting her own mirthful
                            -2-             SDS/90SJR0010/mrp
 1    lyrics to popular songs to satirize and commiserate the lives
 2    of  women,  politicians and everyday life and the issues that
 3    confront society in the General Assembly; and
 4        WHEREAS, Grace Mary Stern won numerous honors and awards,
 5    including the Illinois Association of  School  Boards  Golden
 6    Apple  Award,  the  Highland Park Humanitarian Award, and the
 7    YWCA of Lake and McHenry Counties Lifetime Achievement  Award
 8    and  has been honored by the creation of the Grace Mary Stern
 9    Scholarship Foundation which has been established for Women's
10    Studies at Roosevelt University; and
11        WHEREAS, Grace Mary Stern was an effective  advocate  for
12    improving the quality of education and mental health services
13    of  the State and was a strong defender of individual rights;
14    and
15        WHEREAS, Grace  Mary  Stern  was  truly  devoted  to  her
16    family, especially her husband, Herbert "Hub" Stern and their
17    children, Gwen, Herbert, Robert, Ann, Peter, Thomas, John, Jo
18    Ann,  Mark  and  Leonard  and  their  spouses,  and their ten
19    grandchildren; and
20        WHEREAS,  As  Grace  Mary   Stern   embarked   upon   her
21    legislative  career  in  1985,  she penned these words to her
22    constituents which truly reflect her respect for the  process
23    of government and politics, "Dear neighbor, you have launched
24    me  on  an  unpredictable and challenging experience, and I'm
25    enjoying it enormously, even  as  I  try  to  represent  this
26    diverse district faithfully and energetically.  Everything is
27    new,  sometimes  baffling  and  always  exhilarating.  When I
28    catch sight of the Capitol dome, gleaming over the Centennial
29    Building in the early morning sun, I really have a  sense  of
30    the  history  this  place has seen and a kind of pride for my
31    part in it."; and
32        WHEREAS, Grace Mary Stern has left an indelible  mark  on
                            -3-             SDS/90SJR0010/mrp
 1    the  politics  and  government  of  Illinois  with  her  wit,
 2    enthusiasm  and stength, for she gave much more than she ever
 3    received and did so unselfishly; therefore be it
 5    OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, That we hereby offer our  sincerest
 6    condolences  to  the family of Grace Mary Stern, for we share
 7    their loss and we will always remember this happy warrior who
 8    gave so much of herself for our State; and be it further
 9        RESOLVED, that a  suitable  copy  of  this  preamble  and
10    resolution  be presented to the family of Grace Mary Stern as
11    a measure of our esteem for our beloved  friend,  mentor  and
12    fellow legislator.

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