Cook County Celebrates National Hispanic Heritage Month
Today, Cook County Commissioners and the Office of Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle marked September 15 through October 15, 2023 as National Hispanic Heritage Month in Cook County through the passage of Resolution 23-4982. The Resolution was co-sponsored by Commissioners Alma Anaya, Anthony Quezada and Frank J. Aguilar, and was passed unanimously by the Cook County Board of Commissioners. Cook County officials will continue the celebration and join other Hispanic and Latine officials and community members at a National Hispanic Heritage Month Celebration event to be held at 11:30 a.m. on October 12th in the Lobby of the Cook County Building (118 N. Clark St.).
“Hispanic and Latine individuals of every generation have made immense contributions through their courageous service in government, the arts, education, mathematics, science, literature, technology and philanthropy – both in Cook County and around the globe,” said President Toni Preckwinkle. "We're proud to celebrate that legacy all month long."
National Hispanic Heritage Month was founded to celebrate the heritage and culture of Hispanic and Latine communities and was first recognized by Cook County on September 15, 2014. Hispanic and Latine individuals have long been part of the fabric of Cook County, first being reported on the Illinois census in 1850 and reaching a reported population of 25,211 by 1930. Cook County is proud to celebrate the diversity of its residents and the richness of culture - the Hispanic and Latine population has now increased to 1,382,778 and represents the largest minority group in Cook County.
“The Hispanic and Latino/a/e/x community is a strong pillar of our County, contributing to the social and economic growth in the last decades. I am proud to represent one of the largest Latino/a/e/x communities in Illinois, ensuring our voices and life experiences are considered at the County level. We celebrate the resiliency of our people not just this month, but every day,” said Commissioner Alma Anaya.
Hispanic and Latine residents have established vibrant communities in the traditional port of entry communities of Humboldt Park, Little Village, Pilsen, Back of the Yards, Southeast Chicago and continue to live and flourish throughout Cook County.
“Latine and Hispanic Americans have made contributions throughout every corner of Cook County. We are proud of our heritage, of our culture, and the communities we have built and sustained in America. This is an opportunity to celebrate our shared history. It is a celebration of our lives and culture in the present. It is a promise to continue honoring our culture and contributions in the future. I’d like to thank my fellow board members for coming together and adopting this resolution,” said Commissioner Frank Aguilar.
There are more than 50,000 Hispanic and Latine-owned businesses across Cook County and this entrepreneurial vibrancy has helped revitalize numerous communities in Chicago and suburban communities. Cook County’s economy has always been a magnet for immigrant laborers from all over the world and immigrants from Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America and South America in particular, and Cook County continues to welcome and value the contributions of immigrants.
"I am proud to celebrate this year’s Hispanic Heritage Month as a first-generation American and as the first Costa Rican elected to the Board of Commissioners and in the state of Illinois. Cook County is home to a diverse tapestry of Central and South American communities that make us a beautiful and vibrant county. I encourage everyone to celebrate and enjoy the rich contributions to history, art, music, food, and culture that Latine and Hispanic communities have brought to our neighborhoods, “said Commissioner Anthony Quezada.