Native of Washington, D.C., a licensed real estate broker and insurance agent, Recorder Karen Yarbrough is a full time administrator for Cook County Illinois. She has a B.A. in Business Management from Chicago State University and an M.A. in Inner City Studies from Northeastern Illinois University. Previously, Karen served as State Representative for the 7th District for twelve (12) years, which included Chicago’s west-side and Proviso western suburbs.
As an Assistant Majority Leader in the Illinois House of Representatives, Karen’s legislative themes were public health, public safety, and social justice. In 2011, Yarbrough, as chief House Sponsor helped make history by passing legislation to end the death penalty in Illinois. This legislation was signed into law by Gov. Pat Quinn making it the 16th state to do so.