Illinois’ 72nd District state representative race features three well-known faces from Rock Island

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Illinois’ 72nd District for state Representative will feature a show down between three well-known members of the community in the June 28 primary election. 

Democrats Thurgood Brooks, Jeff Deppe and Gregg Johnson will be on the ballot; there are no Republican candidates who filed.

Current state Rep. Mike Halpin, D-Rock Island, is running for 36th District state Senate. 

The general election will be held Tuesday, Nov. 8.

Thurgood Brooks, 29, is a family advocate with the Martin Luther King Center and an assistant football coach for Rock Island High School.

He graduated from Western Illinois University-Macomb with a bachelor’s degree in history. 

Brooks is active as a community activist and organizer. He is a founding member of the Rock Island Human Rights Commission; a member of the Rock Island County NAACP; and was chosen 2021 Rock Island Citizen of the Year for his work in the community. 

Brooks ran for Rock Island mayor in the April, 2021 municipal election, losing to incumbent Mayor Mike Thoms by about 200 votes.

“You have to do what you feel is right,” Brooks said when he announced his candidacy for the 72nd District.

“Change starts with people working together from the bottom up who have decided to take a stand in a unified way. What I’ve discovered in my efforts in Rock Island County is the people are engaged in our vision as it represents the masses, and the energy behind what we’re doing has compelled us to move forward to represent the people of Rock Island County.”



Rock Island County board member Jeff Deppe has announced his candidacy for state Representative Illinois House District 72.


Jeff Deppe, 52, is vice president of the Rock Island County Democratic Party and is a Rock Island County board member, representing District 9. He was appointed to the county board in 2015 and elected in 2016, currently serving as chairman of the county governance, health and administration committee.

Deppe is employed as the secretary and treasurer of Laborers Local 309 (LiUNA) and was elected Illinois vice president of the Quad-City Federation of Labor in May 2021. He sits on the boards of directors for Arrowhead Youth and Family Services and the Bi-State Regional Commission.

“I’m running for state Representative because I’ve lived in Rock Island County all my life, I’ve paid my taxes and I’ve worked building infrastructure,” Deppe said when he announced his candidacy in September. “I’ve been a labor leader, working to bring blue-collar jobs to this area.

“I feel that my time with the county board has been useful, and I’d like to take my leadership skills to the next level.”



Gregg Johnson has announced his candidacy for State Representative for Illinois House District 72.


Gregg Johnson, 58, retired from the Illinois Department of Corrections after 32 years, working as a corrections officer and then as a supply supervisor while holding a leadership position in his local union.

He has long been a proponent of organized labor. He currently works for a small business that provides financial compliance and other services that helps union officers fulfill their responsibilities to their membership.

Johnson ran for the 36th District state Senate seat in 2018, narrowly losing against incumbent Republican Neil Anderson.

“I really care about this community,” Johnson said when he announced his candidacy for the 72nd District in November. “I have grown up and spent my life working here. I understand what it’s like to raise a family and pay property taxes in Illinois. One thing I have learned from my community is that you get nowhere without hard work.

“I promise that no one will work harder to serve the people of Rock Island County and the 72nd District.”

Johnson is also active in nonprofit and community service work. He recently partnered with the Moline Community Development Organization and the East Moline School District to initiate the Strong Readers make Stronger Leaders program, which provides free books to children; and he served on the Ad Hoc committee for the Kewanee Juvenile Justice Center.

Who’s Running

Democrats

Gregg Johnson

Age: 58

Residence: East Moline

Occupation: Retired from the Illinois Department of Corrections after 32 years, working as a corrections officer and then as a supply supervisor

Elected experience: Ran for state Senate in the 36th District four years ago, but narrowly lost to incumbent Neil Anderson

Jeff Deppe

Age: 52

Residence: East Moline

Occupation: Secretary, treasurer and field representative for Laborer’s Local Union #309

Elected experience: Vice chairman of the Rock Island County Democratic Party and Rock Island County board member since 2015

Thurgood Brooks

Age: 29

Residence: Rock Island

Occupation: Family advocate at the Martin Luther King Center in Rock Island

Elected experience: Ran for Rock Island mayor in 2021, losing to incumbent Mayor Mike Thoms 

How to Vote in the June 28 Primary

Early voting

Early voting for the partisan primary elections is underway in Rock Island County.

In-person: You can vote early at the County Clerk’s Office, 1504 3rd Ave., Rock Island, during normal business hours on weekdays between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. until June 17. The Clerk’s Office will also be open for early in-person voting from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. on weekdays from June 20-27, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, June 18 and June 25, and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, June 19 and June 26.

Voters can also drop off completed ballots using a secure drop box available 24/7 in front of the County Clerk’s Office.

County residents can also vote early at the following satellite voting locations from June 13 to June 24 during the following times:

Western Illinois University, 3300 River Drive, Moline: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday 

Silvis City Council Chambers, 121 11th St., Silvis: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday

Milan Municipal Building, 405 E. 1st St., Milan: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday 

Moline Public Library, 3210 41st St., Moline: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday

By mail: June 23 is the last day for the Clerk’s Office to receive an application in order to mail out an absentee ballot. Visit the Rock Island County Clerk’s website or call the County Clerk’s Office at 309-786-8683 to request an application. 

Voting on Primary Day

Polls are open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, June 28. Find your polling place online at rockislandcounty.org/Elections/Home/.

For more information call: 309- 786-8683.

Sample ballots are available online at www.VoteRICounty.org.

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June 9, 2022 at 02:31PM

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