Wednesday, April 10, 2013

First African American elected to the Morton High school District 201 board in Cicero & Berwyn

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Keating, Kelly, & Jaramillo-Flores Reelected, Lwanga Becomes 1st African American Elected to Board
In Morton High School District 201 election results from Tuesday's Cook County Consolidated Election, incumbents Joe Keating, Margaret Kelly, and Jessica Jaramillo-Flores were reelected to new terms on the board. Kasumba "Kal" Lwanga of Berwyn was elected to fill the post of retiring board member Laura Martin-Salazar.

In all, eleven candidates stood for election on Tuesday. Below are the winning candidates vote totals:

Jessica Jaramillo-Flores (NonPartisan) — 14.25% — 4,458
Kasumba ''Kal'' Lwanga (NonPartisan) — 11.85% — 3,708
Margaret A. Kelly (NonPartisan) — 16.22% — 5,074
Joseph E. Keating (NonPartisan) — 15.28% — 4,781

With his victory, Kal Lwanga becomes the first African-American to be elected to the Morton 201 Board.

“I am deeply grateful for the support I received from the voters of the Morton District 201,” said Lwanga. “This historic win could not have happened without the belief that my supporters had in the idea that Morton High School is an institution that has endured for more than a century and can only continue to succeed with our collective investment in our children. I humbly accept the charge I have been given to fight for the best education this great community can offer its young people, and I look forward to working with Board President Jeffry Pesek and the rest of the Board.”

Morton 201 Board President Jeffry Pesek congratulated the victorious candidates and looked forward to rolling up his sleeves and working with them in the future.

“In the past few years, the Morton 201 Board of Education has worked hard to balance our budget, deal with an ever-declining level of funding from the ever-unstable State of Illinois, all while working to ensure that we provide the best possible education we can to the students in our charge," added Board President Jeffry Pesek. “Joe Keating, Margaret Kelly, and Jessica Jaramillo-Flores have been a vital part of that effort. And, we look forward to working with Kal Lwanga and all the members of the Board as we strive to continue to improve Morton 201 as we move into the future.”

The reelected and newly elected members of the Morton 201 Board of Education will be sworn in and take office at the District’s May 7th board meeting.


Some key election results in Orland and the region

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The Orland Fire Protection District winners John Brudnak and Jayne Schirmacher won in a landslide endorsement of their promise to join the current board leadership to bring fiscal integrity to the district's spending while also maintaining the highest level of emergency protections and services.

The former board of three members, President James Hickey and Trustees Blair Rhode and Chris Evoy have saved taxpayers more than $4 million during the past two years and they have kept budget spending below $30 million during the past two years, the first time the budget has been under $30 million in five years. Had the new board not changed the old policies, the current budget would easily be over $34 million or more.

Here are the election results:

Trustee, Orland Fire Protection District, 6yr  
Registered Voters: 47,973Vote For 2 
Ballots Cast: 6,147
53 of 53 Precincts Reported
Turnout: 12.81%
Precincts Reporting Status Bar
John Brudnak (NonPartisan)
Jayne Schirmacher (NonPartisan)
Marty McGill (NonPartisan)
Glenn Michalek (NonPartisan)
Larry Moran (NonPartisan)

The Village of Orland Park

Despite the negative and anonymous robocall which viciously attacked Brad O'Halloran that O'Halloran's team blamed on the lone independent challenger in the trustee race, John Fotopoulos, O'Halloran easily won re-election. Fotopoulos seemed to have a strong advantage being in the First Ballot position at the top of the ballot, and being the only challenger to go after a Village board seat.

Clearly, the negative response of the robocall, which falsely threw charges of domestic violence against O'Halloran, may have backfired on whomever funded the vicious robocall. (Click here to read about the Domestic Violence Robocall.)

Fotopoulos, who has tried several times to win a seat on the Village Board, apparently failed because he didn't get his own message out. The negative attack against O'Halloran was poorly planned and a critical mistake in election campaigning. The viciousness of the robocall angered those who condemn domestic violence, because they saw an important issue like Domestic Violence being used so carelessly and insensitively for an election. It was like exploiting an important issue. The fact that the robocall was so obviously fake with no attribution synched the deal and the blame was cast on Fotopoulos.

O'Halloran was clearly targeted because four years ago, he received the lowest (though large) vote of the three incumbent trustees.

In the end, mudslinging proves that it doesn't work. It's one thing to tell voters WHY someone should not get elected as Cook County Commissioner Elizabeth "Liz" Doody Gorman did when she was challenged by controversy-plagued former OFPD President Pat Maher for her county seat. It's another thing to simply attack someone else.

Voters in Orland Park are satisfied with the performance of Orland Park Mayor Dan McLaughlin and the village board. O'Halloran has been an independent voice on the board, the lone member to speak out against the finance deal for the controversial Ninety 7 Fifty project.

President, Village of Orland Park  
Registered Voters: 45,886Vote For 1 
Ballots Cast: 5,620
50 of 50 Precincts Reported
Turnout: 12.25%
Precincts Reporting Status Bar
Daniel J. McLaughlin (First Orland Party)
Clerk, Village of Orland Park  
Registered Voters: 45,886Vote For 1 
Ballots Cast: 5,620
50 of 50 Precincts Reported
Turnout: 12.25%
Precincts Reporting Status Bar
John C. Mehalek (First Orland Party)
Trustee, Village of Orland Park  
Registered Voters: 45,886Vote For 3 
Ballots Cast: 5,620
50 of 50 Precincts Reported
Turnout: 12.25%
Precincts Reporting Status Bar
John Fotopoulos (Republican)
Kathleen M. Fenton (First Orland Party)
James V. Dodge (First Orland Party)
Brad S. O'Halloran (First Orland Party)
Library Trustee, Village of Orland Park, 6yr  
Registered Voters: 45,886Vote For 2 
Ballots Cast: 5,620
50 of 50 Precincts Reported
Turnout: 12.25%
Precincts Reporting Status Bar
Linda Zec-Prajka (NonPartisan)
Catherine Lebert (NonPartisan)
Diane Jennings (NonPartisan)
James McCague (NonPartisan)
School District 135 Election Results:

School Board Member, Orland 135, 4yr  
Registered Voters: 39,074Vote For 4 
Ballots Cast: 5,284
43 of 43 Precincts Reported
Turnout: 13.52%
Precincts Reporting Status Bar
Sandra J. Kulak (NonPartisan)
Laura S. Berry (NonPartisan)
Michael R. Maratea (NonPartisan)
Ann M. Gentile (NonPartisan)
Nathan R. Jaisingh (NonPartisan)
Michael F. Carroll (NonPartisan)
Mary A. Bragg (NonPartisan)
Tom Cunningham (NonPartisan)

Click here to check out ALL of the election results for Cook County's suburbs.