Editorial

Kerry Lester

Columnist
  • Phone(847) 427-4603
  • Emailklester@dailyherald.com
  • Twitter

Kerry Lester is a columnist and senior writer who focuses on the people who make the suburbs unique.

Lester, formerly the Daily Herald's political editor, returned to the paper in 2015 after several years with the Associated Press.

In her years as a reporter, Lester has netted a number of statewide and national scoops, including the first sit-down interview with U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk following his 2012 stroke, one-on-one interviews with presidential candidates, and breakthrough reports on the state budget crisis and power struggle in Illinois' newly divided government.

She is proudest of a four-year project looking into a 2008 knife attack on an Elgin High School teacher from the perspectives of the teacher, the student who committed the crime, and the school district. Her subsequent investigation into school safety practices led to a 2012 change in state law.

Lester has received awards from the Chicago Headline Club, the Chicago Journalists Association and the Inland Press Association. She appears frequently on local and national television and radio programs and has moderated a number of political debates.

A native of Des Plaines, Lester is a proud graduate of St. Viator High School, Villanova University and The Queen's University of Belfast, Northern Ireland, where briefly working for a newspaper deepened her commitment to community journalism.

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Lester: Granddaughter helps carry concentration camp survivor’s message

Sep 22 2016 | 12:08 am - After staying silent about his time in a concentration camp for nearly 70 years, Steen Metz of Lincolnshire has spoken to 30,000 students to encourage them to be “upstanders, not bystanders” when atrocities occur, columnist Kerry...

Union County judge schedules Oct. 5 meeting for Duckworth suit

Sep 24 2016 | 8:41 am - A month after their deadline to submit a settlement agreement, U.S. Rep. Tammy Duckworth and two downstate women whose suit against her goes back to 2007 are scheduled to be back in court Oct. 5.

Longtime Prospect teacher was a ‘glass half-full’ guy

Sep 19 2016 | 10:00 pm - Randall Knudsen, a renowned English teacher and debate coach at Prospect High School for more than 25 years, died Saturday after a 14-year battle with Alzheimer’s disease. “He was the most incredible ‘glass half full’...

Kirk launches ad highlighting Duckworth VA lawsuit

Sep 19 2016 | 2:12 pm - Republican U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk launched a new ad Sunday evening that highlights a workplace retaliation suit filed against his Democratic opponent while she was head of the Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs.

Candidate took homeowner exemption on rental properties

Sep 18 2016 | 12:26 am - A DuPage County Board member who is making a bid for Congress improperly claimed a number of homeowner exemptions on properties that her family is renting out, a Daily Herald investigation has found.

Sandack paid extortion money after ‘inappropriate online conversations’

Sep 16 2016 | 8:09 pm - Former state Rep. Ron Sandack wired money to the Philippines to try to avoid disclosure of “inappropriate online conversations” he’d had with a woman who asked to be his Facebook friend, police reports and Sandack disclosed on...

Rolling Meadows’ mayor to replace Murphy in state Senate

Sep 16 2016 | 3:16 pm - Rolling Meadows Mayor Tom Rooney will replace state Sen. Matt Murphy of Palatine, local Republican leaders decided Thursday. Rooney says he’ll resign from his position as mayor.

Harris, Morrison drop out of running to replace Murphy in state Senate

Sep 13 2016 | 5:46 pm - State Reps. David Harris of Arlington Heights and Tom Morrison of Palatine are taking their names out of consideration to replace departing state Sen. Matt Murphy of Palatine.

Dold demands PAC stop linking him to Trump

Sep 13 2016 | 5:47 pm - U.S. Rep. Bob Dold’s attorneys are demanding that a Democratic political action committee stop linking the Kenilworth Republican to Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. Dold is running for the third time in November against Deerfield...

Lester: Some problems at Elgin Mental Health Center linger

Sep 11 2016 | 11:06 pm - The Elgin Mental Health Center stepped up security after a patient who was being held under court order escaped in 2014, but an audit found problems remain at the state-operated facility, columnist Kerry Lester writes.

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