March 01, 2011

State Rep. Patricia Bellock to speak on campus

by Pete Rosenbery

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Illinois state Rep. Patricia R. “Patti” Bellock will share her thoughts on the budget, health care, and politics next week at Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

Bellock, R-Hinsdale, will speak at 5:30 p.m., Monday, March 7, in the Hiram H. Lesar Law Building Auditorium. The Paul Simon Public Policy Institute sponsors Bellock’s presentation, part of Women’s History Month at SIUC.

The discussion will also be available via live stream for free on the Institute’s website,

Media Availability

Reporters, photographers and camera crews are welcome to attend an availability with Illinois state Rep. Patricia Bellock at 1:30 p.m., Monday, March 7, at Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s Paul Simon Public Policy Institute. Director David Yepsen will host the event in the Institute lobby. For more information, contact Matt Baughman, associate director, at 618/453-4009 or 618/201-0082.

Bellock’s visit provides a chance “for us to talk Illinois politics, the state budget situation, and health care issues with one of the important players in the legislature,” said David Yepsen, Institute director. “It is always good for us to host upstate legislators on campus so they can learn about our concerns and issues.”

“Over the years, 12 different associations have named Rep. Bullock as their ‘Legislator of the Year’ and that’s evidence of her wide-ranging interests and impact,” he said.

Bellock has served in the Illinois General Assembly since 1999 and is in her seventh term. She is one of the leading Republicans on issues involving mental health parity, health care, autism, and child support, Yepsen said. Bellock is one of only three Republicans appointed to be chairman of a standing committee, and was one of only 21 members in the General Assembly to serve on the Illinois House Impeachment Committee of former Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

The Illinois Manufacturer’s Association rates Bellock among the state’s top five legislators because of her consistency on business issues, and she has also been recognized by the Illinois Chamber of Commerce for her support of state and local business, according to her website. She has also earned honors for her focus on women’s issues.

“In addition to giving us all a chance to get up to speed on a variety of issues, her appearance is also a chance for students, particularly women, to have a chance to talk with someone about getting into politics someday,” Yepsen said. “One of the missions of the Institute is to encourage civic engagement by younger Americans, and Rep. Bullock will be a good role model and a resource for them.”

A native of River Forest, Bellock taught school in Fairbanks, Alaska, and Milwaukee, and also was vice president of a sports investment firm. Bellock attended Loyola University in Chicago. She earned a bachelor’s degree in history and political science from St. Norbert College in De Pere, Wis.

For more information on this program, contact the Institute at 618/453-4009, or visit