Current Service

Carol Ronen serves as the 48th Ward Democratic Committeewoman (since 2008) and as Democratic State Central Committeewoman for the 9th Congressional District (since 1998). She is also a member of the Democratic National Committee (since 2004).

In these roles Carol helps to shape the Cook County and Illinois Democratic Party Platform and slate candidates. At the national level Carol was elected as a delegate to the 1996 and 2000 Democratic Conventions.

As a member of the DNC she was a super delegate at the 2004 Convention and at the Convention in 2008 that nominated her friend and former Senate colleague Barack Obama.

In 2016, Carol helped to make history once again as a superdelegate at the Convention in Philadelphia, where she proudly supported Hillary Clinton as the Democratic nominee for President.

A History of Service


Supporting Women

Helping women get elected to office is a driving interest. To further this goal Carol helped found Women's Voices, Women's Votes, an Illinois state political action committee that supports the election of progressive Democratic women in the Illinois General Assembly and she is on the Advisory Board of Illinois Women in Leadership, a group which mentors young women who seek to run for office.

Illinois State Senate and House of Representatives

Carol was elected to the Illinois House of Reprentatives in 1992 and to  the Illinois State Senate from 2000 until she retired in February, 2008. Carol was honored to represent one of the most ethnically and culturally diverse areas in the country that includes the Chicago neighborhoods of Edgewater, Andersonville, Bowmanville , Uptown, Lincoln Square, and Rogers Park.

During her tenure in the Senate she chaired the Health & Human Services Committee where she helped author and pass legislation guaranteeing healthcare to every child and universal pre-k to every four year old.

She also was chair of the Labor and Commerce Committee, where she led the successful effort to increase the minimum wage in Illinois and pass the Equal Pay act which increased the number of women covered by equal pay protections and provided for strong state enforcement.

She was an acknowledged leader on a wide range of progressive issues. Ronen received the best legislator award in every term she served in the General Assembly from the Independent Voters of Illinois (IVI/IPO) a non- partisan progressive organization. In 2004 she received the IVI/IPO Ethel Parker award which is bestowed upon the legislator with the best voting record on over 55 progressive, good government bills.

In addition, Carol was the lead senate sponsor of the Illinois Human Rights act, landmark legislation protecting Illinoisans from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Passage of the bill culminated 12 years of work and fulfilled a personal commitment she made when she first ran for office - to extend equal protection to Illinois gay, lesbian and trans-gendered citizens. Illinois was one of only five states in the nation to pass such sweeping protections.

Carol has been one of the most steadfast supporters of Illinois nurses. From her first year in the general assembly she championed the need to expand access to quality health care by greater utilization of Advanced Practice Nurses (APNs). She was the sponsor of a 1996 bill that allowed APNs to establish practices in Illinois. In recognition of her efforts, Carol was named the Illinois Nurses Association Legislator of the Year in 1996 and 1997. In 2005, Carol was made the first Honorary Advanced Practice Nurse by the Illinois Society of Advanced Practice Nurses.  In 2007 she was acknowledged by the Illinois Advanced Practice Nurses Association and the Nurse Anesthetists Association for her years of support and advocacy.

Her work on behalf of children and other underrepresented groups has been recognized on numerous occasions. In recognition of her leadership and commitment to children, Carol was named the first Chair of the House Committee on Children in 1996 while serving in the House of Representatives.

Over the length of her legislative service she has been the recipient of many awards acknowledging her role in protecting children from unsafe products, expanding and improving child care, creating a universal pre-k program , establishing Illinois as the first state to provide every child with healthcare and support for immigrants.


From 1970 through 1992 she held a variety of administrative positions with the city of Chicago in the health and human services arenas. Some of the positions she held include: Executive Director of the Women's Commission, Director of Research and Evaluation for the Chicago-Cook County Criminal Justice Commission and Director of Legislative and Community Affairs for the Chicago Department of Human Services.

She resides in Chicago's Edgewater Neighborhood where she is a member of Emanuel Congregation.


Carol holds a Master's Degree in Public Administration from Roosevelt University and a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science from Bradley University.