EP26 - Michael Ziri Shares His Passion for Advancing Equality

Michael Ziri, Director of Public Policy at Equality Illinois, shares his passion for advancing the rights and equality of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) Illinoisans. Scroll down to learn more about Michael and this episode.

In this episode of “Tales from Around the Water Cooler“ Kristen and Michael discuss pending legislation that affirms LGBTQ people in areas such as employment and education. Michael also provides insight into his current efforts with Equality Illinois to provide civic engagement opportunities and resources to various community organizations. Michael advises community members to advocate for causes they are passionate about by leaning in, getting involved, and telling their stories.

Get connected with Michael Ziri and Equality Illinois!




Stay informed with pressing Illinois legislation!

The Inclusive Curriculum Bill (SB 3249)

The status of the IHRA Employment Bill (HB 4572)

Michael Ziri biography (updated June 20, 2018)

Michael Ziri is the Director of Public Policy at Equality Illinois (EI), the state’s civil rights organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. He is passionate about advancing justice and lived equality for LGBTQ Illinoisans.

At EI, Mike spearheads an aggressive legislative agenda in Springfield, builds and strengthens relationships with officials and political leaders throughout Illinois and in Washington, D.C., and develops policy initiatives. He is also secretary of the Equality Illinois Political Action Committee.

Joining EI in January 2015, Mike brought to the organization seven years of experience working for Illinois state government. He was the Director of Legislative Affairs at the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, legislative liaison at the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, a Dunn Fellow in the Governor’s Office

He also served two terms as Trustee of the Springfield Metropolitan Exposition and Auditorium Authority, the public board that oversees the Springfield convention center. Mike was the first openly gay elected official in Sangamon County.

A native of Springfield, Mike earned his bachelor’s degree at Illinois College in Jacksonville and his master’s degree at the University of Illinois Springfield. He lives in Chicago’s 47th Ward.

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