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Jennifer Welch
Chicago Department of Family and Support Services
Deputy Commissioner

Jennifer Welch is now the Deputy Commissioner of the Chicago Department of Family and Support Services. (effective 09/13/10)

Previously, Jennifer Welch was the Policy Director for Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan. In this role she lead a team to develop and implement policy initiatives for the Attorney General covering topics including violence against women, internet safety, campus safety and childrenís products safety. She represented the Attorney General on numerous Boards and Committees, including acting as Chair Pro Temp of the Illinois Violence Prevention Authority.

Preceding her role as Policy Director, Ms. Welch focused on violence against women as the Attorney Generalís Womenís Policy Advisor. In that role she led statewide efforts to improve laws, services and systems for abused women and their children. As an example, Ms. Welch created and introduced the order of protection short form notification to law enforcement agencies throughout the state. She continues to monitor policies and legislation impacting women and children and participates on numerous boards and advisory councils such as the Illinois Department of Human Services Domestic Violence Advisory Council.

Ms. Welch came to the Office of Attorney General Madigan after nearly nine years as the Executive Director of the Chicago Metropolitan Battered Women's Network. As the Network's Director Ms. Welch coordinated public policy and system-wide advocacy efforts of more than 50 organizations plus individual members. She led the successful campaign for a new domestic violence court in Cook County, Illinois. Ms. Welch also developed the city of Chicago Domestic Violence Help Line, which helped approximately 10,000 callers each year, in partnership with the Chicago Mayor's Office on Domestic Violence.

Prior to working at the Battered Women's Network she was a founding member of the Illinois Clemency Project for Battered Women. Ms. Welch holds a JD from the Chicago-Kent College of Law and received her undergraduate degree in psychology at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

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