Les Aspin Center for Government
Distinguished Alumnus Award
As chief of staff for assistant Majority Leader and U.S. Senator Richard J. Durbin, Patrick is responsible for the operation of Senator Durbin’s leadership, personal and state offices and his work with the Senate Democratic Caucus. Patrick also is the liaison to the 21-member Illinois Congressional delegation.
Patrick started his political career during the summer of 1990, when he was a student at the Les Aspin Center (formerly the Marquette Washington Program) in the office of then-Congressman Durbin. After graduating in 1991, he returned to Washington, D.C., as a legislative assistant for Senator Durbin.
During the past 22 years, his responsibilities in the senator’s office have included serving as staff director for the assistant Democratic leader in the 109th Congress (2005–06) and as projects director (1997-2004).
Before Senator Durbin was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1996, Patrick served as a legislative assistant in his House office. He has worked on several of the senator’s campaigns, including successful House re-elections in 1992 and 1994; the Senate election in 1996; and re-elections in 2002 and 2008.
Patrick, a native of Quincy, Ill., received a bachelor of arts degree in broadcast communication from Marquette and a master of arts degree from Georgetown University. He was awarded the 2010 Professional Achievement Award from Marquette’s J. William and Mary Diederich College of Communication. His wife Amy Ford Souders, is a 1992 alumna of Marquette and a member of the Aspin Center Board of Visitors. She is a founding partner of Cornerstone Government Affairs. They have a daughter, Elizabeth (Elle) Ford Souders.