CurtisandCharleighTarver was in attendance at his swearing-in with his five-year-old daughter by his side. He attributes his advocacy in education to raising her through the public school system. “We have a lot of work to do but I look forward to fighting for equitable opportunities for all students no matter their zip code.” Tarver will especially advocate for accessible and quality early childhood education in the state, as he said, “early opportunities set the course for the rest of their lives.”
Tarver has spent his career fighting for civil rights. “As an attorney, I made it my life’s work to stand up for people who’ve faced discrimination – folks who, by no fault of their own, have not been given a fair shot at success,” Tarver said. “In the court room, I made sure the voices of people in my community were represented justly. As a member of the Illinois House, I’ll continue advocating to even the playing field because I know that in order to improve the lives of families on the South Side, we need to increase opportunities by investing in our schools, reforming the criminal justice system, and growing our local economy.”
In addition to his work as a lawyer, Tarver co-owns a brewery with locations in Chicago and the south suburbs. The brewery has focused on hiring individuals who are formerly incarcerated to provide them with the tools and experience to continue in the workforce and even start their own businesses. Tarver’s passion for helping small business owners succeed and commitment to criminal justice reform will be cornerstones to his legislative agenda over his two-year term.
“As the co-owner of the first African-American owned brewery in Illinois, my experience motivates me to take a hard look at the restrictions and regulations that Illinois places on small businesses – the largest employer in the state – and cut through the red tape,” Tarver said. “Everything about our neighborhoods – from our schools to our crime rates and property values – will improve if we empower regular folks to start their own businesses and build their local economies.”
“The next few months are an opportunity for my colleagues in the House and Senate, along with our new Governor, to put partisan fighting behind us and focus on the real needs of people who are struggling to get by,” said Tarver. “I’m incredibly humbled and grateful to the people of the 25th District for putting their faith in me to represent them in this process.”