There are many contested races in our County.  In an effort to provide information to voters; we will provide profiles of each candidate as it becomes available. For now, here are the four candidates running for State Senator.  Their profile is an excerpt from the Chicago SunTimes Candidate Profile webpages.  Links to their full candidate profile provided under READ MORE for each candidate.

Other contested races are State Representative – 79th District.  Candidates are Robert Ellington-Snipes and Charlene Eads.  

Several precinct committee persons are contested as well.  Please check back for a listing.

State Senator – 40th District (in order on the ballot)

Patrick Joyce

READ MORE – Chicago SunTimes Candidate Profile. 

His top priorities include economic development, school funding and Kankakee River issues.

Political/civic background: Involved with political campaigns my entire life

Occupation: Farmer/Business owner.

Education: BS Degree Agribusiness, Illinois State University

Campaign website:                 Facebook: electpatrickjoyce.

Marta Perales

READ MORE – Chicago SunTimes Candidate Profile 

Her top priorities include residents’ access to water, infrastructure and public transportation.

Political/civic background: Communications Secretary for the Kankakee County Democratic Party and Democratic precinct committee person.

Founding member and Vice President of the Illinois Democratic Women of Kankakee County since July 2019. Work with Southland Friends of Labor Executive Board to raise funds to support labor friendly candidates running in south suburban Cook County, Will County and Kankakee County.

Positions held:

  • Transit Campaign Organizer with Illinois Jobs to Move America. A coalition housed out of Chicago Jobs With Justice where I was successful in uniting labor unions, community groups and environmental organizations to support manufacturing in the Chicago region.
  • Metra Affairs Administrator. Performed role of liaison for Metra in areas of legislation at the Illinois state level and federal level as needed.
  • Statewide Coordinator for The Illinois Metropolitan Planning Organization Advisory Council. Provided a mechanism for policy development regarding metropolitan transportation issues through Illinois MPO Association board meetings in coordination with state and federal agencies. Coordinated training for metropolitan planning organization’s staff and member agencies, which included IDOT and FHWA.
  • Research and Appropriations Analyst for the Illinois House of Representatives. Provided analysis and staff support on these House Committees: Tollway Oversight, Mass Transit, Railroad Industry, Smart Growth & Regional Planning, and Public Safety. Appropriations analyst for the Illinois Department of Transportation and DCFS introduced budgets.
  • Assistant to the Mayor at the Village of Olympia Fields. Completed economic internship where I created the framework for the revamped village website and designed/published their first Business & Village Directory.
  • Information Systems Analyst at the Illinois State Police.

Occupation: Legislative and Political Consultant

Education: Bachelor’s Degree from Governor’s State University and Master’s Degree from University of Illinois at Springfield.

Website:      Facebook: @marta.perales     Twitter: @martaperales

Lori Wilcox

READ MORE – Chicago SunTimes Candidate Profile 

Political/civic background: City of Chicago Heights, City Clerk
Bloom Township Democratic Committeewoman
Chicago Heights Free Public Library, Chair

Occupation: Manager

Education: Pursuing a Doctorate of Education, Governors State University

Masters Degree in Education AIU Bachelor Degree Individual Studies Western Illinois University, Post Bachelor Degree Paralegal Studies Roosevelt University Chicago

Campaign website:      Facebook: LoriWilcoxWay      Twitter: @LoriJWilcox

Monica Gordon

READ MORE – Chicago SunTimes Candidate Profile

Her top priorities include completion of the South Suburban Airport, Kankakee River improvements and economic development for Pembroke Township.

Political/civic background: Illinois Legislative Black Caucus Foundation. Service affiliations include Illinois Democratic County Chairs Association Leadership Circle, Rich Township Democratic Organization, Democratic Women of South Suburbs, Girls 4 Science Board of Directors, and Plan4Success Board of Directors

Occupation: Executive Director, Illinois Legislative Black Caucus Foundation

Education: Master of Arts in Communications & Training, Governors State University, University Park, IL   (GSU Collegiate Graduate Scholarship Recipient)

Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL

Campaign website:    Facebook: Monica Gordan for State Senate

State Representative – 79th District (in ballot order)


Robert S Ellington-Snipes

Political/civic background:  Kankakee County Board Member District 18.  Democratic Precinct Committee Person in Kankakee.  

Occupation:  Supervisor at Kankakee School District 111.

Education:  Graduate of Momence High School

Facebook:  Robert Ellington Snipes – 79thDistrictStateRepresentative

Charlene Eads

Political/civic background:   Union steward with AFSCME Local 29.  Democratic Precinct Committee Person in Bradley.  Treasurer of the Illinois Democratic Women of Kankakee County.

Occupation:  Social worker.

Education:  Bachelor’s Degree from Olivet Nazarine University. Master’s Degree in Social Work from Governor’s State University

Campaign website:

Facebook:  Charlene Eads Democratic Candidate for State Representative 79th District



The Kankakee County Democratic Party is working to recruit a diverse group of highly qualified Democratic candidates. We are seeking candidates who are committed to equal representation and opportunity for every individual regardless of age, gender, race, ethnicity or financial status.

Nearly every odd-numbered county board district in Kankakee County is held in a Republican seat.  Please check out this map and consider running.  There is still time to be slated by the Party by June 2020.  County board members are paid a stipend.  Committee meetings are held monthly on weekday mornings, so a candidate would need to have a flexible day time schedule.

Kankakee CB_map2019

Call or email us, if you have more questions!  Email or call (815) 401-1114.  There are many resources available through our organization and the Illinois Democratic County Chairs’ Association to prepare candidates to run.