031511br0486-rThank you for visiting my website.

I am proud to serve as the State Senator from Illinois’ 47th District, representing much of western Illinois. I hope you’ll find this site a useful resource in keeping up to date with what’s happening in our district and in Springfield. Please contact any of my offices with questions or ways I can better serve you.

It is my honor to represent you in Springfield.

State Senator John Sullivan
47th Legislative District

MaryAnnBickerdykeSPRINGFIELD – The second Wednesday of May could soon become a statewide holiday honoring a historic Galesburg figure and all military nurses. Mother Mary Ann Bickerdyke was a hospital administrator and military nurse from Galesburg who served as chief of nursing for Ulysses S. Grant's army during the Civil War.

The Illinois State Senate passed House Bill 2775, which adds Mother Mary Ann Bickerdyke Day to the list of commemorative dates. State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) sponsored HB 2775 in the Senate; it had already passed the House and was sponsored by Representative Don Moffitt (R-Galesburg).

"Mother Mary Ann Bickerdyke is a pivotal figure in the history of battlefield nursing and military medicine. She helped revolutionize battlefield care, sanitation and veterans advocacy," Sullivan said. "Her sacrifices and the outstanding work of all military nurses deserve to be honored and recognized; that's what this commemorative day does."

"Thank you Sen. Sullivan for your efforts to recognize Mother Bickerdyke, who brought battlefield medicine to new heights, which has been built upon by modern medicine," Moffitt said. "This day brings honor not only to her but to past, present and future military nurses as well as all nurses."

Mary Ann Bickerdyke lived from 1817 to 1901 and oversaw the construction of roughly 300 field hospitals during the war as well as personally tending to the sick and wounded on the battlefield. Because of her work, Union soldiers gave her the title "Mother."

She lived and practiced medicine in Galesburg before the Civil War. Following the war she set up numerous schools, hospitals and boarding houses. She was also a vocal advocate for veterans' pensions and benefits.

Mother Mary Ann Bickerdyke Day now goes to the governor for approval.


State Senator John Sullivan (D- Rushville) visits with Hamilton High School students Tuesday while they demonstrated their work in 3D computer animation. The students came to the Capitol as part of Tech Day 2013, when students from across the Illinois showcased technology-focused education projects. (click photo to enlarge)

sullivan-75x75SPRINGFIELD – Under legislation sponsored by State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville), hospitals like Galesburg Cottage Hospital would be able to continue to provide the highest quality emergency room trauma care.

Senate Bill 625, which passed unopposed with bipartisan support, would allow hospitals to continue providing emergency room care under new Illinois Department of Public Health certification requirements. The measure creates a new level III trauma center designation and acute injury stabilization category of hospitals.

"This legislation addresses an issue that was brought to me by Cottage Hospital, where qualified emergency room doctors have been providing quality care to the community," Sullivan said. "I want to ensure that rural and underserved areas of the state have every opportunity possible for the highest quality of emergency medical services."

Senate Bill 625 was co-sponsored in the Senate by Sen. Darin LaHood (R-Dunlap) and is being carried by State Representative Don Moffit (R-Galesburg) in the House, where SB 625 now goes for a vote.


State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) meets with downstate K-12 education officials during the Illinois Association of School Business Officials' conference on legislative interaction Tuesday at the Stratton Building in Springfield. He discussed effective practices for communicating with lawmakers, spoke about the state's budget and answered questions about pension reform legislation. (click photo to enlarge)

Senator Sullivan and Miss Illinois Megan Ervin

State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) welcomed fellow Rushville native and Miss Illinois Megan Ervin when she visited the Capitol this week. (click photo to enlarge)

LibrarySignSPRINGFIELD – Area libraries will be able to purchase new materials with the help from the state of Illinois. The "Back to Books" program gives 11 local public libraries the opportunity to purchase educational resources for a wide array of specialty needs.

"Our libraries play a unique role in supporting our communities, which is why it is important for us to support them," Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) said. "Although these grants are small, they play a big role in helping our libraries offer new materials for training and community outreach."

Area libraries requested materials to help veterans make the transition from military to civilian life, training DVDs for fire departments, technical training resources and large-print retirement-related books for senior citizens. A growing population of French-speaking African immigrants, living in and around Galesburg, is just one group that will benefit from these grants. The Galesburg Public Library included French language resources in its application for funding.

"We have been ordering materials for them and just received a Back to Books grant of $3,000 to buy French materials for all ages," Galesburg Public Library Director Harriett Zipfel said. "Libraries respond to the needs of the communities they serve, each in their own unique ways."

The "Back to Books" program is an initiative from Secretary of State Jesse White's office funded by the Federal Institute of Museum and Library Services and the state's library funds.

"Our libraries perform so many essential tasks, but at their core what our libraries do best is make books and other materials available to patrons," White said.

Grants to libraries in Senate District 47

  • Biggsville: Henderson County Public Library District
  • Bushnell: Bushnell-Prairie City Community Unit School District #170
  • Carthage: Carthage Public Library District
  • Galesburg: Galesburg Public Library
  • Macomb: Macomb Public Library District, Western Illinois University
  • Monmouth: Warren County Public Library District
  • Quincy: Blessing-Rieman College of Nursing, John Wood Community College, Quincy Public Library
  • Table Grove: Vermont Ipava Table Grove Community Unit School District #2

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Contact Info

Springfield Office:

417C State House
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-2479

Quincy Office:

926 Broadway, #6
Quincy, IL 62301
(217) 222-2295

Macomb Office:

1601 W. Jackson St., Suite 105
Macomb, IL 61455
(309) 833-5526