With only a few weeks before someone new is elected to lead Arlington Heights for the first time in 20 years, retiring Village President Arlene Mulder is enjoying a series of lasts: her last Hearts of Gold dinner, her last budget approval process and this week, her last visit to the White House as a sitting mayor.
On Tuesday, President Barack Obama hosted Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny at the White House and Mulder was among about 250 invited guests at the reception.
Mulder has visited the White House numerous times over her decades in public service, often as part of the United States Conference of Mayors, under Presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama. But this was the first time her husband made the visit with her.
Although Mulder isn't sure why she was invited -- because her husband is Dutch, not Irish -- she said she was grateful for the chance to show her husband around the White House. They shook hands with the president and first lady and passed along a brochure to the Irish Prime Minister about Peggy Kinnane's Irish Restaurant & Pub, so maybe he'll stop by the next time he's in town, she said.
"It's a wonderful place, it's like walking through a book of history," Mulder said. "That was my last visit and it was a lovely, lovely event."