Colleen Callahan was appointed on February 19, 2019  by Governor JB Pritzker to serve as Director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR). As IDNR Director, Callahan also serves as Chairman of the Illinois Conservation Foundation.  Prior to the appointment, Colleen managed her own communications consulting firm after serving for more than seven years as state director for USDA Rural Development in Illinois. During her tenure at USDA, she and her staff worked with local communities and businesses to generate a $1 billion increase in the Illinois rural development loan portfolio. Colleen also worked for 30 years in radio and television, serving as the agribusiness director for WMBD in Peoria. She was the first female president of the National Association of Farm Broadcasting. Colleen grew up on a cattle and grain farm near Milford in Iroquois County. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in agricultural communications from the University of Illinois at UrbanaChampaign.

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