Two Stateline Residents to be Honored with 'Order of Lincoln'

Emily Bear and David Rydell to be honored with six others

ROCKFORD - Two Stateline area residents are among those who will receive the 2018 Order of Lincoln, which is the state’s highest honor for professional achievement and public service Gov. Bruce Rauner announced Friday.

And each would be recognizable to area residents for different reasons.

Emily Bear is the musician prodigy who at only 16 years old has received national reknown as a pianist, composer and songwriter.  The Governor's office notes that, "she has since performed at many of the world’s most well-known venues, including Carnegie Hall, the White House, Lincoln Center, Montreux Jazz Festival and the Hollywood Bowl.  Symphonies across the world have performed Emily's original compositions, and she has helped raise millions for charities across the globe through performances and events."

David Rydell is the Chairman of Bergstrom Inc., a Rockford company which designs commercial vehicle climate systems, but would also be recognizable as the corporate face of the 'Stateline Quiz Bowl'.  Bergstrom is the primary sponsor of the weekly High School Quiz Bowl program which runs weekly from October to May on WTVO-17 and FOX-39, and Rydell has been featured in TV commercials explaining the reasons for the company's support for the program.

The Governor's office adds about Rydell that, "throughout his career has served and continues to serve on the boards of many community and not-for-profit organizations. He also supports said organizations and others through the family and company foundations."

Other laureates include former Chicago Bears football star and broadcaster Dick Butkus, YouTube co-founder Stephen Shih Chen, Former Loyola University President The Reverend Michael J. Garanzini, former business executive and non-profit Chairperson S.J, Mellody Hobson, Purina Mills CEO Edward L. McMillan, and noted pioneer in diabetes research Dr. Louis Philipson.

“This year’s Order of Lincoln recipients are an extraordinary group of individuals that truly embody President Lincoln’s relentless and passionate spirit for public service,” Gov. Rauner said in a statement announcing the recipients . “They have positively changed their communities in numerous ways, and their contributions will impact Illinois and the world for generations to come. It is my honor to award them the Order of Lincoln.”

The Lincoln Academy of Illinois will hold its 54th annual Convocation at the historic Coronado Theatre in Rockford on Saturday, May 5th. There, members of the Academy will honor eight outstanding Illinoisans with the Order of Lincoln at a formal ceremony.

More information on the award can be found here.


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