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Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago

The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (MWRD) Board of Commissioners passed a resolution honoring the state’s first black Speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives Emanuel “Chris” Welch.

Speaker Welch has been an instrumental partner to the MWRD, striving to protect the region’s water environment and address flooding issues, most recently partnering with the MWRD and local municipalities in the west suburbs to deliver the MWRD’s Addison Creek Reservoir and Channel improvements projects.

These critical flood control projects will provide significant benefits to communities along Addison Creek, including Bellwood, Northlake, Stone Park, Melrose Park, Westchester and Broadview. The 600-acre-foot Addison Creek Reservoir, located in Speaker Welch’s district in Bellwood, will hold close to 200 million gallons of storage capacity and connect with the Addison Creek Channel. The MWRD project is on track for completion by late 2022.

“We are proud to recognize Speaker Welch as a partner and strong advocate for our water environment,” said MWRD Board President Kari K. Steele. “We applaud Speaker Welch and the Illinois House of Representatives on his historic election as house speaker, and we look forward to many years of collaboration. His dedication and accomplishments as a new leader for our state are reminders that perceived barriers are not impediments but challenges that inspire greater achievements.”

Speaker Welch began serving in the Illinois House in 2013, before being elected by his colleagues as House Speaker on Jan. 13, 2021. He was born in Chicago, attended Proviso West High School in Hillside, earned a bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University’s School of Communication and earned a law degree from John Marshall Law School (now UIC John Marshall Law School).

“It was a pleasure working with Speaker Welch when I served as a member of the Illinois General Assembly,” said MWRD Commissioner Kimberly Du Buclet. “Speaker Welch has worked diligently in his role as a member of the Illinois House of Representatives to serve his constituents and improve our quality of life in Illinois.”


Press Release
Awards and Announcements

Established in 1889, the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (MWRD) is an award-winning, special purpose government agency responsible for wastewater treatment and stormwater management in Cook County, Illinois.


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