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posted: 2/24/2012 5:00 AM

Tiballi for Kane coroner

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The Daily Herald Editorial Board

One can debate endlessly whether the best background for a county coroner is in detective work or medicine, and that debate takes center stage in the Republican race for Kane County coroner. There, a sergeant in the DuPage County sheriff's office -- Rob Russell, of South Elgin -- faces off against a pediatrician and infectious disease specialist -- Bob Tiballi. Both men are eminently qualified for the job, and each says his specialty is better preparation. But the fact is, as both candidates also acknowledge, the coroner's primary function is managing an office where both specialties have a place. So, what impresses us about Tiballi is not his medical background, but the obvious passion he has for the coroner's job. He sought the office unsuccessfully previously, and he has continued to be an active observer of the operation and outspoken critic of the current office holder, who has refused to step down despite being indicted on misconduct charges. Russell and Tiballi are both committed to cleaning up the office and its reputation. But considering his clear interest in the coroner's function and his intimate familiarity with the office's operation, Tiballi is best suited to return it quickly to its primary professional functions.

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