Gov. Pritzker’s chief of staff debriefs recent Japan international trade talks

Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker stayed home during the talks recovering from a broken leg. (Photo courtesy JP Pritzker)

By Dave Dahl

SPRINGFIELD – The point person on Illinois’ recent trade visit to Japan says everybody’s in for international trade.

How much of this is about downstate?

“A great deal,” said Anne Caprara, Gov. JB Pritzker’s chief of staff, leading the trip while Pritzker recovers from a broken leg. “We have several companies from Japan that are located downstate. Several of them are in manufacturing. We have companies that are located in the Chicago suburbs as well. One thing we made sure to spend a good amount of time talking about job training programs that we have at our various universities here, and the cost of doing business is relatively low.”

Access to universities and their engineering graduates is also a plus, Caprara said.

Caprara says Chicago hosts the Japanese next year. “We wanted to see how it was run, understand what kind of businesses attend, and really get a sense of what we are going to be able to do to attract attendance at next year’s conference,” she said.

Dave Dahl can be reached at 


Reactions to the “A Community in Conflict” exhibit

By Mike Matejka Every community has its home-town pride; Bloomington-Normal is proud to claim Steak n’ Shake and MASH TV star McLean Stevenson.  We’ve also had a moment of contention and conflict.  Sometimes these are uplifting stories of human progress. At other times, they cause us to shake our heads and wonder why. The McLean…