Come to the ACLU Luncheon at the Hilton Hotel in Chicago on March 15th

Dear Readers,

I am writing to share some exciting news – the kind of news I hope you will mark your calendar for: I am delighted to announce that I am serving as a Co-Chair for the ACLU of Illinois’ Annual Lunch which will be March 15, 2019, at the Hilton Hotel in Chicago.

Like so many of you, I have spent the past two years looking for personal ways to combat the travesties we see coming out of Washington on a daily basis. As someone who has great concern for civil liberties and personal freedoms, it has been difficult to watch the Trump Administration’s careless disregard for the constitution and personal rights. The ACLU is an organization that gives me hope that we will persevere, that the foundations of our democracy will remain intact and that we will learn from the challenges we are facing today in order to build an even stronger democracy in the future.

I hope that you will join me in supporting the ACLU by sponsoring a table at the Lunch. This blog post has the links that will guide you through that process.  If you cannot sponsor a table but you want to come, individual tickets are also available. I would love to see you there.  This Lunch sells out every year, and space is limited, so I encourage you to reserve your spots as soon as possible!

The keynote speaker for the event will be Vanita Gupta. She is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. She is often on cable news and is a terrific speaker.  Previously, she was the Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General and head of the Civil Rights Division at the U.S. Department of Justice until January 20, 2017.  Earlier in her career, Vanita was a Deputy Legal Director at the ACLU’s National Office, where she  managed a robust litigation docket and led the organization’s Smart Justice Campaign aimed at ending mass incarceration. I am eager to hear what she has to say about a pathway forward to protect civil liberties.

I hope you will mark your calendars for March 15 and come to the luncheon. It would be a great way to push back against this administration;    If you cannot come, I hope you will support the ACLU at this important time. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to Liesl Pereira at the ACLU of Illinois ( You can always reserve a table by emailing her to pledge your support. Or, you can visit the website to purchase your table or ticket.

I look forward to celebrating our democracy together in March with the ACLU of Illinois!

Sheila Markin Nielsen JD, MSW