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The Honorable Mary Flowers

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Information about The Honorable Mary Flowers

Profile image of The Honorable Mary Flowers

Profession

Category:
PoliticalMakers
Occupation(s):
State Representative

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Bright Colors
Favorite Food:
Greens
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Jamaica
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
7/31/1951
Birth Location:
Inverness, Mississippi

Profession

Category:
PoliticalMakers
Occupation(s):
State Representative

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Bright Colors
Favorite Food:
Greens
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Jamaica
Favorite Quote:
None

Birthplace

Born:
7/31/1951
Birth Location:
Inverness
See how The Honorable Mary Flowers is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Mary Evelyn Flowers was born on July 31, 1951, in Inverness, Mississippi. As a child, she moved with her family to Chicago, Illinois, where she attended Simeon High School. Upon graduation in 1970, Flowers enrolled at Kennedy-King College in Chicago before transferring to the University of Illinois at Chicago Circle Campus. After receiving her degree, Flowers held a series of positions with her alma mater before assuming the position of Vice-Chancellor for Academic Affairs, which she held from 1977 to 1979.

Flowers’ career in politics began as a volunteer for the mayoral campaign of Harold Washington. In 1985, she was elected to the Illinois House of Representatives from Chicago’s 31st District. As a member of the state legislature, Flowers has been instrumental in passing considerable health care and children’s rights legislation. She also sponsored the Illinois Managed Care Act, which was signed into law.

Flowers spearheaded the renaming of the Calumet Expressway after Bishop Louis Henry Ford, making the Bishop Ford Highway the first expressway to be named after an African American. She has sponsored legislation to keep public pension funds from being invested in apartheid-era South Africa as well as legislation requiring sensitivity training for police officers in Illinois. Flowers served as Chairperson for the Committee On Health Care Availability and Access.

Married to Daniel Coutee, Flowers is the mother of one daughter, Makeda. She was the recipient of several award and honors, including “Legislator of the Year” from the Community Behavior Healthcare Association of Illinois and the “Legislative Appreciation Award” bestowed by the Chicago Teachers Union.

See how The Honorable Mary Flowers is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Mary Flowers' interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Mary Flowers lists her favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Mary Flowers describes her early memories of growing up in her family
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Mary Flowers talks about her parents
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Mary Flowers shares her memories of elementary school in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Mary Flowers remembers when Martin Luther King marched in her Chicago neighborhood in 1965
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Mary Flowers describes the Chicago, Illinois neighborhood where she grew up in the 1960s
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Mary Flowers describes her elementary school and her neighborhood
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Mary Flowers talks about her childhood aspirations
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Mary Flowers talks about those who influenced her as a child
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Mary Flowers describes what she enjoyed as a child
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Mary Flowers talks about her relationship to her siblings
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Mary Flowers describes her mother
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Mary Flowers describes her experience attending Kennedy-King College in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Mary Flowers talks about her marriage to Dan Coutee, and the birth of her daughter, Makeda
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Mary Flowers describes her entry into politics and her relationship with Mayor Harold Washington
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Mary Flowers talks about her campaign for a seat in the Illinois General Assembly in 1983
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Mary Flowers reflects on her service in the Illinois General Assembly
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Mary Flowers describes the first bill she introduced in the Illinois General Assembly, "Kids Initiative 95" pt 1
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Mary Flowers describes the first bill she introduced in the Illinois General Assembly, "Kids Initiative 95" pt 2
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Mary Flowers describes Illinois House Bill 626, the Illinois Managed Care Act of 1999
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Mary Flowers describes the successful passage of House Bill 626, the Illinois Managed Care Act of 1999
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Mary Flowers talks about her passion for politics and the political process
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Mary Flowers talks about the African American politicians who came before her, and describes institutionalized racism in Illinois politics
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Mary Flowers talks about Mayor Harold Washington's encouragement of her political career
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Mary Flowers talks about her legacy and how she would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Mary Flowers talks about her family and how political life affects her husband and daughter
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Mary Flowers describes her philosophical approach to politics
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Mary Flowers narrates her photographs