University News

IIRA's Ed Heflin Appointed to State Independent Living Council

October 30, 2012

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MACOMB, IL — Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn has recently appointed Edward Heflin of the Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs (IIRA) at Western Illinois University to the Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC). A not-for-profit organization, the SILC of Illinois is charged with developing a plan that includes leadership, research and education aimed at addressing provision of statewide independent living services throughout Illinois.

Heflin, appointed as a community representative of McDonough County, will serve to help promote a more efficient and effective government. As program manager of the Illinois Rural Transit Assistance Center (a unit of the IIRA), Heflin has served on the SILC transportation subcommittee for the past several years.

"The lack of transportation has long been a major issue for rural Illinois citizens, but especially for those seeking to transition to independent living," Heflin said. "Because our transportation unit at the IIRA already offers statewide technical assistance to rural transit providers, we seek to bring them together with the SILC constituency to provide rides that presently are not available."

Heflin also holds an executive appointment to the Interagency Coordinating Committee on Transportation, a planning body tasked with coordinating efforts of multiple state agencies funding transportation services.

"We are very pleased that Ed has been appointed to serve as a council member. His background and expertise in coordinating transportation services will be a great asset for the organization," said IIRA Director Chris Merrett.

To learn more about the Illinois Rural Transit Assistance Center, visit For more information, contact Heflin at (309) 298-3392.

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