Longtime political operative and lobbyist Jack Dorgan was chosen at a state central committee meeting. Dorgan beat out a field of 6 other hopefuls, some who said the party is broken. Dorgan has a different view.
"Well the party's not broke. We've had some growing pains right now. We're ready. We're united and we’re going to move forward and show people there is a two party system."
The 53 year old Dorgan has worked on numerous campaigns over 30 years. He had the backing of some top Republicans in Illinois. He replaces Pat Brady, who stepped down amid controversy over his support for same sex marriage. Dorgan refused to clarify where he stands on that issue, saying it's a party with a lot of different ideas.
Party chairman is a volunteer role that includes fundraising, recruiting candidates and spearheading the GOP's campaign strategy. The once powerful Illinois GOP has been decimated as infighting and the party's inability to attract women and minority voters has helped Democrats' rise to power. Dorgan says he's a coalition builder who will get the party's message out.