Thomas R. Chiola
|Judge of the Illinois Circuit Court of Cook County|
|Succeeded by||Celia G. Gamrath|
|Born||March 18, 1952|
|Alma mater|| Illinois State University (B.S.)|
University of Illinois College of Law (J.D.)
Thomas R. Chiola (born March 18, 1952) served as a judge of the Illinois Circuit Court of Cook County from 1994 to 2009. He was the first openly gay person elected to public office in Illinois.
Chiola grew up in Springfield, Illinois.He graduated from Springfield's Griffin High School (now Sacred Heart-Griffin High School) in 1970. Chiola then received a Bachelor of Science from Illinois State University in 1974 and a Juris Doctor from the University of Illinois College of Law in 1977.
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Sacred Heart-Griffin High School, often abbreviated SHG, is Springfield, Illinois' largest private high school. The school is Roman Catholic and is located in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield in Illinois. It opened in the fall of 1988 after Sacred Heart Academy, an all-girls Catholic high school merged with Griffin High School, an all-boys Catholic High School located across the street. Even prior to the merger, certain classes at both schools were taught on a co-educational basis.
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In 1994, Chiola was elected to the Illinois Circuit Court of Cook County.Chiola was the first openly gay candidate elected to any federal, state, county or municipal office in Illinois.
In 1997 Chiola was inducted into the Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame.
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