Sean Crawford

Chatham

Community Advisory Board, Ex-Officio

Sean has led the NPR Illinois news operations since the fall of 2009. He replaced the only other person to do so in the station's history, Rich Bradley. Prior to taking over the News Department, Sean worked as Statehouse Bureau Chief for NPR Illinois and other Illinois Public Radio stations. He spent more than a dozen years on the capitol beat.

Sean  began his broadcasting career at his hometown station in Herrin, Illinois while still in high school.  It was there he learned to cover local government, courts and anything else that made the news.  He spent time in the Joliet area as News Director and Operations Manager for a radio station and worked for a chain of weekly newspapers for two years.  Along with news coverage, he reported heavily on sports and did on-air play by play. 

Sean holds a Master's Degree in Public Affairs Reporting from the University of Illinois Springfield. 

A woman wounded in a workplace shooting in Springfield Friday died of her injuries, according to the Sangamon County Coroner.  Marsha Strumpher of Springfield, 54, had been hospitalized since the incident and died Saturday.  

As the state lifts more restrictions, moving to Phase Four of the Restore Illinois plan, there are worries about a spike in coronavirus cases.  Hear what some experts are saying.

A Bloomington nursing home was the site of a COVID-19 outbreak.  We learn more about what happened there.

And while Illinois lays claim to the Great Emancipator, its past also includes slavery. We'll get a history lesson.  That and more on Statewide.

A black bear has been spotted several times this month in western Illinois.   And authorities are telling  the public to avoid getting too close or agitating the animal.  

A list of health and safety guidelines for getting students back in classrooms is scheduled to be released before the end of the month. It will provide rules and recommendations for more than 850 school districts resuming classes this fall.

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker said he is worried the mass protests over police brutality happening across the country could spread the coronavirus. 

Illinois lawmakers have approved a $40 billion state budget and a plan to address tax rates for a casino expansion during a whirlwind special session held amid the coronavirus pandemic. 

Reports across the country of retail workers being physically attacked for enforcing safety rules, like the wearing of face masks and social distancing, prompted Illinois lawmakers to take action.  A measure was passed getting tougher on those who commit such acts. 

On this episode of Statewide, a task force has been created to figure out the best way to get students back to college this fall.  We talk with a higher education leader about what's at stake and the challenges ahead.

And, high school seniors missed out on traditional graduation ceremonies.  For valedictorians, that meant not being able to stand in front of their classmates and deliver an address.  But they still have things to say and we'll listen to a few of them.  

Those stories and more on this week's Statewide.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker Wednesday announced bars and restaurants can serve customers outside once the state takes the next step in his Restore Illinois plan.

They will still have to follow certain guidelines aimed at protecting patrons and staff.  

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker has said he expects the coronavirus to peak soon.  While the state is far from out of the woods, there are indications the state's hospitals might be able to handle the caseload. 

With a week to go before Illinois' stay-at-home order is set to expire, Gov. J.B. Pritzker said there are some areas the state needs to improve before lifting restrictions.

That includes testing, contact tracing, treating COVID-19 and personal protective equipment for health care workers.  

On this episode of Statewide, Governor J.B. Pritzker talks candidly about being in charge through a public health emergency and a near economic shutdown.  

We also find out more about restrictions on funerals during the pandemic. 

And an Illinois farmer tells us how agriculture is being affected. 

That and more on Statewide.

On Sunday, Illinois surpassed the 20,000 mark in total cases.  The death toll now stands at 720 since the pandemic began.

While those numbers are grim, there might be a silver lining. 

Citing statistics showing blacks with COVID-19 are five times more likely to die than white patients, the state is taking steps to address the disproportionate impact. 

Gov. J.B. Pritzker Tuesday led off his daily briefing to the media and residents across the state with news the coronavirus showed up in his office.

Governor J.B. Pritzker focused Sunday on changes to make sure those who need child care can get it.    

AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast

In the midst of a global pandemic that has shut down much of society, concerns remain about getting enough people tested.

Illinois is extending its income tax filing period, days after the federal government did the same. 

Both Illinois and federal income taxes will have the same deadline – July 15.

LLINOIS OFFICE OF COMMUNICATION AND INFORMATION

Just a few weeks ago, Gov. JB Pritzker offered up a spending blueprint for Illinois. But that was before the COVID-19 pandemic was on the radar.

Charles Rex Arbogast / AP Images

Gov. JB Pritzker on Tuesday described an Illinois worst-case scenario in which the state could be far short of the ventilators, hospital beds and intensive-care unit spaces for expected COVID-19 cases.

After days of blasting President Donald Trump over his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said the two spoke by phone Monday.

Pritzker has been especially critical regarding the lack of supplies going to states.  But he said in their conversation, the president was “very responsive.”

Governor J.B. Pritzker says the work of Illinois government will continue during the COVID-19 outbreak.  But changes are coming for many state employees.  

Governor Pritzker's remarks as prepared for delivery:

The following are the Governor’s remarks as prepared for delivery:

Starting with the new year, Illinois will expand privacy protections for people who use genetic testing kits. 

It would be difficult to overstate how consequential the past year was in Illinois government and politics. This week on State Week, the panel looks back at some of the top stories of 2019.

Travel during the holidays can be stressful.  It can be even more so with a loved one suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease in tow.

But the Alzheimer’s Association has some suggestions to make things go smoother and make sure all of the family can participate in activities. 

This week marks 30 years since the Berlin Wall came down.  In Illinois, there are two locations where pieces of the wall are on public display.  

You can see a chunk of the wall at a Chicago CTA station.  Or in a more relaxed setting in a peace garden at Eureka College in Woodford County.  The college is the alma mater of President Ronald Reagan, who gave the famous directive to Soviet Leader Gorbachev to “tear down this wall.”

As cooler weather arrives this fall, certain insects are looking to head indoors.  Among those bugs that want to share your home is a relative newcomer to Illinois. 

The brown marmorated stink bug has been showing up here since about 2010. 

Sean Crawford / NPR Illinois

Illinois is offering an incentive to those who have outstanding state tax debt in an effort to get them to pay up.

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