by Mark Rhoads
There has always been a diaspora of native Illinoisans raised or educated in Illinois but who achieved political success in other states. They have included New Jersey Gov. John Corzine (D) who was seriously injured in an automobile accident three months ago but is recovering. Corzine was a native of Taylorville, Illinois. He graducated from the University of Illinois and from the University of Chicago Business School. The late Republican U.S. Senator from North Carolina, John P. East, was born and raised in Springfield, Illinois and graduated from the University of Illinois Law School in 1959. He served from 1981 to 1986.
Another example is former Tennessee Congressman and immediate past Tennessee Governor Donald K. Sundquist (R) who served as governor from 1995 to 2002. Don was born in Moline, Illinois on March 15, 1936. He graduated from Moline High School in 1953 and from Augustana College in Rock Island in 1957. He moved to Tennessee after two years on active duty in the U.S. Navy. The Illinois Blue Book for 1915 listed 25 sitting members of Congress who were formerly from Illinois in addition to the 25 House members elected from Illinois. Since the influence of a state can be measured in different ways including the impact of its former residents, I will try to find other examples to share in this feature. If you know of other famous people who achieved success in another state but are natives of Illinois, please leave their names in comments below so I can look them up. Thank you.