Donne E. Trotter

Senator from the 17th District at Illinois State Senate

Donne E. Trotter

Donne E. Trotter

Senator from the 17th District at Illinois State Senate


Born in the southern Illinois town of Cairo, Trotter was raised in Chicago where he has lived throughout his entire life. He attended the University of Arizona and Chicago State University where he earned an undergraduate degree in History and Political Science. Trotter also attended Loyola University School of Law in Chicago where he earned his Masters of Jurisprudence in Health & Policy.

Trotter was elected to the Illinois Senate in 1992 after spending two terms in the House of Representatives. Senator Trotter is also one of the Democratic caucus’ leading experts in state budgeting. As chairman of the Senate Appropriations I committee, he has worked to reduce unnecessary spending, encouraged streamlining of state services and earned a reputation for evenhandedness in difficult negotiating circumstances.

As one of the longest serving legislators in Springfield, Trotter has built commendable record on health care and public health issues. He was one of the key leaders in helping to create the state’s KidCare program, which is designed to provide health insurance for low-income children. Additionally, he has been a tireless advocate for funding critical health care investments including the FamilyCare program, which provides medical coverage insurance to the parents of children enrolled in KidCare.

In an effort to combat the spread of deadly diseases, he authored initiatives permitting adults to purchase sterile syringes from pharmacies without a prescription. He has passed legislation that allows an individual to file a petition asking for his/her personal police records to be sealed, after which no one would have access to the records except law enforcement agencies, giving individuals a second chance at contributing to their community.

In 2001, Senator Trotter sponsored and passed the law that created the Abandoned Newborn Infant Protection Act. The legislation provides that birth parents may legally leave a newborn at a hospital, fire station or emergency medical facility. If neither child abuse nor neglect is suspected, no questions will be asked.

In order to help Illinois' elderly pay for long-term health care, Senator Trotter has advocated a Elder Care Savings Bond program that would be similar to the state's pre-paid college savings program, allowing Illinois residents to pay into a fund to avoid higher nursing home and other long-term health care costs in the future. He also has co-sponsored legislation to protect seniors and the developmentally disabled who rely on assisted living arrangements. Under Trotter’s proposal, the Illinois Department of Public Health would license assisted living and shared housing facilities to better protect consumers of these services.

Senator Trotter introduced legislation creating a prostate-screening program within the Illinois Department of Public Health. Noting that African-American men have a higher risk of developing prostate cancer, he led the effort to create an income tax check-off to fund research aimed at finding a cure for prostate cancer, an awareness program on the dangers and importance of early detection.

The Senator and his wife, Rose, have four children.
17th District
Assistant Majority Leader

Years served: 1988 - 1993 (House); 1993 - Present (Senate)

Committee assignments: Committee of the Whole; Appropriations I (Chairperson); Appropriations II; Pensions and Investments; Energy; Deficit Reduction (Co-Chairperson); Subcommittee on Pension Reform.

Biography: Senior hospital administrator; born Jan. 30, 1950, in Cairo; B.A., Chicago State University; M.J., Loyola University School of Law; married (wife, Rose), has four children.

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01/30/1950 - Cairo, IL, United States



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Attorney General at Illinois Office of the Attorney General

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Partner at Thompson Coburn LLP

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Donne E. Trotter
Senator from the 17th District at Illinois State Senate
Masters in Health Administration & Law

Loyola University Chicago School of Law is the law school of the Loyola University Chicago, in Illinois. Established in 1909, by the Society of Jesus, the Roman Catholic order of the Jesuits, the School of Law is located in downtown Chicago, within walking distance of the Water Tower (only surviving downtown building of the 1871 Great Chicago Fire), the John Hancock Center (one of the tallest buildings in the United States), Holy Name Cathedral and the Magnificent Mile of North Michigan Avenue. Loyola University Chicago School of Law offers degrees and combined degree programs, including the S.J.D., the equivalent of the Doctorate Degree in Law. Loyola University Chicago and its Water Tower campus also holds art exhibitions and other cultural events.

Bachelor's Degree in History & Political Science

Chicago State University (CSU) is a university located in Chicago. The university is a member school of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. Founded in 1867 as the Cook County Normal School, it was an innovative teachers college. Eventually it was taken over by the Chicago Public Schools and became Chicago Teachers College (CTC). Northeastern Illinois University began as a branch campus of CTC. In 1951, the State of Illinois began funding the college, and took it over in 1965, transforming it into a comprehensive state college. In 1967, it became Chicago State University.

Career History
Senator from the 17th District
1993 - Current
1988 - 1993

The Illinois House of Representatives is the lower house of the Illinois General Assembly, the state legislature of the U.S. state of Illinois. The body was created by the first Illinois Constitution adopted in 1818. The House consists of 118 representatives elected from individual legislative districts for two-year terms with no limits; redistricted every 10 years, based on the 2010 U.S. census each representative represents approximately 108,734 people. The state legislature has the power to make laws and impeach judges. Lawmakers must be at least 21 years of age and a resident of the district in which they serve for at least two years.

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Donne E. Trotter is affiliated with Illinois State Senate, Illinois House of Representatives

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