November 14, 2019
Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs
Hon. Michael Frerichs
Michael Frerichs was first elected Illinois State Treasurer in November 4, 2014 and re-elected on November 6, 2018. In Illinois, the Treasurer’s office predates the state’s incorporation in 1818. Voters in 1848 chose to make it an elected office. Frerichs is the 74th person to serve in this role.
In Illinois, the Treasurer is the state’s Chief Investment and Banking Officer. The office invests money on behalf of the state and local units of government. Frerichs also believes in providing individuals with the tools so that they can invest in themselves.
The Treasurer’s Office actively manages approximately $31 billion. The investment approach is cautious to ensure the preservation of principal. The investment returns are significant: For every $1 spent to run the office, Frerichs nets $42 for the state’s residents.
Since taking office, Treasurer Frerichs has made significant strides in the fight for consumers by making sure Illinois residents get what is owed to them through the Unclaimed Property Program. A record-breaking $180 million in forgotten cash and stock was returned to individuals, employers, and non-profits in Fiscal Year 2018. By making changes to the Bright Start and Bright Directions College Savings Programs, Frerichs has lowered fees and provided more investment options, making college more affordable for families saving for their child’s future.
Under Treasurer Frerichs’ leadership, Illinois now leads a multi-state alliance that allows parents of children with blindness or a disability to save for their child without jeopardizing their federal disability benefits. Achieving a Better Life Experience Program (ABLE) is the national standard, offering high-quality and low-cost investment options.
In November 2018 Treasurer Frerichs launched Secure Choice, a retirement savings program that will benefit 1.2 million private-sector workers in Illinois who do not have access to an employer-sponsored retirement plan.
In 2006, Frerichs was elected Illinois State Senator representing east-central Illinois. As chairman of the Higher Education Committee he championed efforts to make college more affordable. He also served as chairman of the Agriculture and Conservation Committee and became a Certified Public Finance Officer.
Frerichs currently serves on the Executive Committee of the National Association of State Treasurers, the National Association of State Auditors, Comptrollers, and Treasurers, the College Savings Plan Network, and the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators. He also serves as a trustee on the Illinois State Board of Investment.
Treasurer Frerichs resides in Champaign with his young daughter, Ella.