Illinois Public Access Counselor to Highlight February Luncheon

Wednesday February 6, 2008 the guest speaker for our monthly luncheon panel will be Terry Mutchler, the Public Access Counselor from the Illinois Attorney General’s Office. Ms. Mutchler will be talking about her role in Illinois and how Missouri would benefit from a similar position. Mutchler will share her experiences in the position, including getting the Chicago Public Schools to release requested documents:

For at least a decade, the Chicago Board of Education has maintained secret files on some of the criminals who have slipped into the school district’s teaching ranks. Portions of the secret files were released to Small Newspaper Group in October after a contentious open records battle that involved the Illinois Attorney General’s Office pressuring the state’s largest school system to release the documents to the newspaper group.

“It was one of the longest fights we’ve ever been involved with,” said Public Access Counselor Terry Mutchler of the Attorney General’s Office. “Clearly, this information should be public record. There are a variety of reasons why people in government don’t want to release public records. One of the reasons is they don’t want to take the heat for what is in them said.” (source)

The luncheon will be held at Flamingo Bowl, located at 1117 Washington Ave (map) in St. Louis’ downtown loft district. The $8/person fee includes a build your own sandwich bar, veggie pizza, soda and water.

At the end of the month, well almost, the 28th (this is a Presidential election year which means February has 29 days), we will have a happy hour that spans two hours — 7pm-9pm. This month’s location is LaGra Italian Tapas, 1227 Tamm Ave., St. Louis (map link).

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