Janice D. "Jan" Schakowsky (born May 26, 1944) American politician, has been a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives since 1999, representing Illinois's 9th congressional district(map). The district includes many of Chicago's northern suburbs, including Evanston, Skokie, Wilmette, Park Ridge, Des Plaines and Rosemont. It also includes a large portion of Chicago's North Side bordering Lake Michigan.
Schakowsky was born in 1944 in the city of Chicago of Russian origin,origin and graduated from the University of Illinois. She was Program Director of Illinois Public Action, Illinois' largest public interest group, from 1976 to 1985. She then moved to the Illinois State Council of Senior Citizens as executive director for five years until 1990, when she was elected to the Illinois House of Representatives. She served there for four terms.
Sidney Yates, who had represented the 9th District since 1949 (except for an unsuccessful run for the Senate in 1962), had announced in 1996 that he wouldn't run for re-election in 1998. Schakowsky easily won the Democratic primary, which all but assured her of election in the heavily Democratic 9th. She won in November with 75 percent of the vote and has easily won reelection four times with 70 percent or more of the vote. She is only the third person to represent the district since 1949.