With the goal of adding a progressive voice to the Illinois political media sphere, Progress Illinois launched in March 2008 thanks to a founding sponsorship from the SEIU Illinois State Council.
The timing was ideal: Barack Obama’s White House bid sparked widespread political interest and elevated Chicago’s political scene. This momentum continued during the year after the election, as Illinois generated a string of compelling political events. And PI was at the center of the action, establishing itself as a premier source of political news and commentary in the state.
The PI editorial team – made up of editor-in-chief Aricka Flowers, reporter-bloggers Ellyn Fortino and Ashlee Rezin, and contributing writers Brandon Campbell, Nathan Greenhalgh, Steven Ross Johnson, Michael Sandler, and Bob Skolnik – publishes 50 or more items per week covering a range of timely issues. This content draws from the best articles and commentary on the topics at hand, supplements this material with original reporting and analysis, and provides resources for those seeking to learn more.
“A must-bookmark that combines original reporting with muscular commentary on stories in the local media.” - Eric Zorn, Chicago Tribune columnist
“Extremely well-designed and extremely well-written. Get in the habit of checking it regularly.” - Nate Silver, FiveThirtyEight.com
“If you’re serious about Illinois public policy, PI is an essential source” - Harold Pollack, The American Prospect
“Every state should have one.” - Chris Hayes, The Nation
Some accolades earned by PI:
- One of the Community Media Workshop's 2010 Studs Terkel Award recipients (March 2010).
- Awarded "Best State Health Care Reporting" by the Campaign for Better Health Care (November 2009).
- Ranked 4th in the Community Media Workshops' "The New News" report (June 2009).
- Named the top political blog by MidwestBusiness.com (September 2008).