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William D. "Will" Burns is currently serving as 4th Ward Alderman of the City of Chicago. In February 2011, he was elected Alderman of the 4th Ward after being elected two terms for Illinois State Representative for the 26th district. As Alderman, Will is committed to attracting quality commercial and residential development, improving neighborhood public schools, enhancing public safety, and increasing transparency, efficiency, and accountability in city operations. Prior to his election to the House in 2008, he served as deputy chief of staff and senior advisor to the Illinois Senate President. In that role, Will developed legislation for the Senate Democratic Caucus on issues ranging from criminal justice, consumer protection, education, minority business development, and ethics reform. His experience has helped him to hit the ground running as a freshman lawmaker. Prior to working for the Senate President, Will was the vice president of program and field offices for the Chicago Urban League. He spearheaded the League's voting rights/redistricting efforts, managed its day-to-day programmatic activities, and coordinated the League's public policy initiatives. A strong commitment to social justice and civic engagement is demonstrated through Will's participation on the boards of several not-for-profit organizations, such as Lugenia Burns Hope Center, Mikva Challenge, Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law, the Center for Tax and Budget Accountability, the Blue Gargoyle Youth Service Center and the South East Chicago Commission. In 2001, Will was named an American Marshall Memorial Fellow of the German Marshall Fund of the United States. He attended the University of Chicago where he earned his bachelor's and master's degrees. Will is a 2012 Rodel Fellow of the Aspen Institute and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.