For Immediate Release
Nominees sought for Illinois Route 66 Centennial Commission
SPRINGFIELD — Illinoisans with an interest in history in general — and the Mother Road in particular — are encouraged to nominate themselves for open seats on the recently created Route 66 Centennial Commission.
The commission’s 20 members will develop plans for celebrating the famous highway’s 100th anniversary, coming up in 2026. Gov. Bruce Rauner, who signed legislation creating the commission in July, shall appoint three public members, one of whom shall lead the commission. The governor said today he looks forward to reviewing nominations for what certainly will be a fun, but also an economically important, public service opportunity.
“Illinois holds the distinction of being the starting point for this legendary highway, and we are proud of the historic preservation efforts that have boosted tourism along our portion of Route 66,” Rauner said. “The 100th anniversary of this iconic road is worthy of celebrating all along its path.
“But I am confident that the members of this commission will ensure that Illinois plays host to events and activities that will be the envy of Mother Road states, and I encourage anyone interested to apply.”
“Illinois is leading the way on Route 66 as we plan for the 100th birthday of the world’s most famous road,” said Rep. Tim Butler, R-Springfield, the chief House sponsor of House Bill 66 and a member of the Illinois House Committee on Tourism, Hospitality and Craft Industry. “The Route 66 Centennial celebration gives us a unique opportunity to focus the world on our State, the place where the Mother Road begins. I look forward to working with the Commission to plan for a tremendous year.”
The commission shall meet at least quarterly. Applications for gubernatorial appointments can be made online here.
Along with the governor’s selections, eight appointments to the commission shall be made by Senate and House majority and minority leaders. Also serving on the commission will be the president of the Route 66 Association of Illinois and the executive director of the Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway, or their designees.
Rounding out the commission shall be seven ex-officio members to include the following officials or their designees: the governor, the secretary of the Department of Transportation; the director of the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency; the Department of Natural Resources director; the director of the Office of Tourism; the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity director; and the director of the State Archives.