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updated: 4/12/2016 7:15 PM

Lt. Gov. Sanguinetti to be Northwestern College commencement speaker

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  • Illinois Lt. Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti, Northwestern College's 2016 commencement speaker.

    Illinois Lt. Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti, Northwestern College's 2016 commencement speaker.

Laura Pollastrini

Northwestern College President Lawrence Schumacher announced that the 2016 Commencement Speaker for Northwestern College's June 10th ceremony will be Lt. Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti. She is the state's 47th lieutenant governor and the first Latina lieutenant governor in the United States.

A wife and working mother of three young children, she is an attorney by trade and formerly an adjunct professor of law. Her storybook rise to Lt. Governor began as a child of teenage parents outside of Miami, Florida, an Ecuadorian immigrant father and a Cuban refugee mother. Despite extreme poverty, a language barrier with Spanish as her first language and some enormous odds, her love of learning and the determination of her parents to create a better life for their children helped to set her on a course to make history.

"Lt. Governor Sanguinetti's personal story is sure to provide an inspirational message to the College's 2016 graduates," commented President Schumacher. "Her path to the state's capitol evidences that no goal is beyond anyone's reach, despite the odds!"

This year's Northwestern College commencement ceremony will take place on Friday, June 10, at the Arie Crown Theater in Chicago at McCormick Place, 2301 S. Lake Shore Drive. The ceremony will begin at 5 p.m. and include approximately 300 graduates. In the past, commencement ceremonies have yielded nearly 4,000 attendees in support of the graduation class.

As a young child, Sanguinetti's parents introduced her to the piano at the local community center. It was her love of piano and her gift to play that led to Sanguinetti's acceptance into The New World School of the Arts in Miami where she became an accomplished pianist. This educational opportunity helped open the door to college for her; she attended Florida International University where she received her bachelor's degree in piano performance.

After graduation Sanguinetti moved to Chicago to attend The John Marshall Law School where she not only acquired a passion for the law, but fell in love with Chicago and Illinois. She began her legal career as an Assistant Attorney General in Illinois and settled into the state that she now calls home. After marrying her husband Raymond they had three children, which led to involvement in their elementary and middle schools, parent-teacher associations, Cub Scouts, park districts and youth baseball associations.

Sanguinetti's political roots began in 2011 when she was elected to the Wheaton City Council. Then in 2014 Bruce Rauner selected her to be his running mate for Governor. In January of 2015, Sanguinetti was sworn in as lieutenant governor, making history not only in Illinois as the state's first Hispanic lieutenant governor, but as the first Latina lieutenant governor in the nation.

Lt. Governor Sanguinetti will give the keynote address at Northwestern College's Commencement Ceremony on June 10. The College has well over a century of history in the Chicago area, having been established in 1902. It was purchased by the Schumacher Family in 1958 and has grown from one campus in Chicago serving a handful of students in accounting and stenography, to two campuses (Bridgeview and Chicago-Jefferson Park) in addition to NC Online. Today the college serves approximately 1,500 students and maintains several dozen areas of study. In 2010 Northwestern College opened its Violet L. Schumacher School of Nursing, named for President Lawrence Schumacher's mother who purchased the college in 1958.

"We are excited that Illinois Lieutenant Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti has agreed to provide the Commencement Address for our Class of 2016!" commented President Schumacher. "Her life has taken some amazing turns, yielded her a great education, and made history across this nation. We look forward to her sharing that story with our Northwestern College Class of 2016!"

About Northwestern College:

Northwestern College (NC) is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, 230 S. LaSalle St., Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL 60604, (312) 263-0456, The college offers focused career-oriented associate degree and certificate programs with flexible schedules and a supportive faculty. Day, evening, weekend, online classes and online programs are available. More information can be found at or by calling toll-free (888) 205-2283. information can be found at or by calling toll-free (888) 205-2283.