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Checking in on Pritzker’s diversity goals

Monday, Dec 2, 2019

* Hannah Meisel at the Daily Line

In his first 11 months in office, Gov. JB Pritzker has made 324 appointments to key posts within his administration and to state boards and commissions — a diverse group that’s 50 percent female and approximately 40 percent people of color.

As part of an occasional series on the diversity of Pritzker’s picks for these positions, The Daily Line has been tracking racial and gender diversity of those the governor has appointed to head up state agencies and serve on state boards and task forces. […]

Illinois is one of the nation’s most diverse states. According to the latest stats available from the U.S. Census Bureau, the people of Illinois were 61.3 percent white, 17.3 percent Hispanic, 14.6 percent black and 5.7 percent Asian. […]

Pritzker has mostly met those diversity goals, with 163 women named to director posts for state agencies and to state boards and commissions, and 130 people of color appointed by the governor since January. Pritzker’s hires in the governor’s office are also a diverse group, though The Daily Line’s analysis does not extend to those who report directly to Pritzker.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

21 Comments »
  1. - RNUG - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 9:59 am:

    Diversity goals are nice but here is the real question: are these people effective at doing the job they were appointed to?

    And while it may not be a fair shot since nobody seems able to manage it, DCFS doesn’t seem to be doing well …


  2. - John's Daughter - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 10:08 am:

    I have to say that the diversity hire at my Agency is not the right person for the job. But as it meets this goal of Governor Pritzker’s, I doubt it will be remedied. At least not until the decline becomes the Governor’s priority.


  3. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 10:10 am:

    I look at this in two different ways;

    Personnel *is* policy.

    Who you hire, or holdover, or move, promote, demote, that’s policy.

    After one year, after one year on the job, there are no holdovers, you own them, they *are* your policy.

    Also… diversity is important, the best folks in the spots makes it even better.

    While personnel *is* policy, that makes diversity part and parcel of policy too. I wholly applaud the work being done here by the administration, and wish them continued success in building the administration and this state.


  4. - Clover - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 10:44 am:

    I love how personnel who happen to be “Ethnci” are referred: “These people,” “Diversity Hire,” etc.

    Let’ss call out some white folks who are in the Gov’s office simply because they worked on a campaign with no executive branch experience.

    Let’s name white folks who hire their friends and give them a bigger salaries than “Those People.” The hypocrisy is deep and institutional preferences still exist in the highest echelons of state government.

    And for you defensive folks, I’ve served many administration. So I’ve seen it First hand.

    Get over yourselves.


  5. - Cubs in '16 - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 10:51 am:

    ===Let’s name white folks who hire their friends and give them a bigger salaries than “Those People.”===

    So those white folks never hire non-white friends?


  6. - NeverPoliticallyCorrect - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 11:03 am:

    This is a never ending issue. Just how many is enough, what identity groups have to be counted? But it’s ok to not consider party affiliation. Oh, and we have to make up for past practices, for how long? Do we then go to an identity blind process based on competency? Doubtful because that would take away some peoples reason for being.


  7. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 11:04 am:

    === how many is enough===

    How many of what?

    If you’re gonna be - NeverPoliticallyCorrect -, use your words. All of them.


  8. - Understated - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 11:13 am:

    The administration appears to have achieved a laudable goal here, especially since they started with Rauner’s not so good percentages of minority and women employees. Let’s hope that in their quest to achieve this (almost perfect) target they didn’t run afoul of hiring rules, etc.

    ==Who you hire, or holdover, or move, promote, demote, that’s policy.

    After one year, after one year on the job, there are no holdovers, you own them, they *are* your policy.==

    So true and how you go about it will be analyzed as well.


  9. - Cheryl44 - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 11:23 am:

    Calling a person a “diversity hire” really isn’t more polite than calling a person a “token.”


  10. - Earnest - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 12:01 pm:

    People seem to assume that achieving diversity is only about whom you hired. It’s mainly about recruitment and marketing of job openings. If you’re not getting an applicant pool that reflects the general population it indicates you’re not reaching potential applicants and possibly missing out on some really good ones. Kudos to Pritzker for what appears to be an effective approach to diverse and thorough recruitment. As OW noted, from here on out Pritzker owns not simply the staffing, but the performance of his agencies, state boards and commissions.


  11. - RIJ - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 12:34 pm:

    Very proud of Governor Pritzker.

    As to the people who whine because their white world is coming to and end - I feel so sorry for them. All that energy wasted on a fight that they are doomed to lose. They could actually use therapy to help them adjust and accept. That kind of anger just sours their entire world.


  12. - thunderspirit - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 1:41 pm:

    I am mystified by those who continue to insist that diversity is bad.

    Differences in background, experience, and opinion exist. Not to want to seek those different voices out to strive for better outcomes for all is myopic.


  13. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 3:35 pm:

    == Diversity goals are nice but here is the real question: are these people effective at doing the job they were appointed to?==
    That’s a funny question. Why wouldn’t they be?


  14. - Thing1 - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 3:48 pm:

    -Why wouldn’t they be?-
    Because people should be hired based on their qualifications, not to fill some sort of quota. Diversity for diversity’s sake is pandering.


  15. - the working poor - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 3:49 pm:

    The coded language occurring in these comments is a huge disappointment, but I appreciate the comments calling it out.


  16. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 3:50 pm:

    === Because people should be hired based on their qualifications, not to fill some sort of quota===

    Who isn’t qualified. Big assumption on your part.

    ===Diversity for diversity’s sake is pandering.===

    So you have examples of the unqualified? Send them to the Governor’s Office.

    It’s as though you’re saying diversity automatically means unqualified? Are ya saying that?


  17. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 4:05 pm:

    === Nope, but you did. Good to know what’s always on OW’s mind.===

    Then what’s the beef you have… if they’re qualified?

    LOL


  18. - RNUG - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 4:08 pm:

    == That’s a funny question. Why wouldn’t they be? ==

    FWIW … I was a Vinson Bill (multiple) 4 year term appointee for part of my career with the State. Over 30+ years I saw plenty of unqualified political hacks and resume stampers appointed to positions. I also saw qualified people of all persuasions / stripes / etc. appointed to positions.

    Let me be perfectly clear here: I don’t care if they are a Blue Martian or a Purple People Eater if they can do the job.


  19. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 4:12 pm:

    == Let me be perfectly clear here: I don’t care if they are a Blue Martian or a Purple People Eater if they can do the job.==
    On that we can agree.


  20. - OpentoDiscusssion - Monday, Dec 2, 19 @ 5:50 pm:

    Looks like a defacto quota system.

    What is important is that all individuals are treated fairly in the hiring system.


  21. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Wednesday, Dec 4, 19 @ 8:13 am:

    It’s odd isn’t it? When diversity in hiring is mentioned, all the hand wringers come out asking about quality of workers, but with a mere mention of an entity hiring they don’t.
    It’s contrary to common sense. Hiring from a larger pool of potential employees will get you better employees than hiring from a smaller pool of employees.


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