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Article updated: 5/7/2013 8:58 PM

Frank Bart takes over as Wauconda's new mayor

By Russell Lissau

The Frank Bart era has begun in Wauconda.

Bart, who defeated incumbent Mayor Mark Knigge by a mere 33 votes last month, took the oath of office during Tuesday night's village board meeting.

New Clerk Gina Strelecki and rookie Trustee Teri Burke -- both Bart allies -- were sworn in, too. Incumbent trustees Lincoln Knight and John Barbini, who ran on a slate with Knigge, also began new terms Tuesday.

Although the campaign was heated, Knigge and Bart were gracious to each other during the meeting, even cracking a few jokes.

Knigge congratulated the newly elected officials and talked about the excitement of taking office.

Once he was sworn in, Bart gave Knigge a plaque for his service and a bouquet of flowers to Monica Knigge, the former mayor's wife.

Bart also pledged to reach out to the Knigge family as mayor.

"Their ideas and opinions are important to our future," Bart told the standing room only crowd at village hall.

Bart, 43, is a business consultant and a military veteran. A lieutenant colonel with the U.S. Army Reserve, he completed three tours in the Middle East with the Illinois National Guard.

Bart talked about his vision of leadership after taking the oath.

"I believe leadership is a role where we are in service to those we lead," Bart said.

Strelecki defeated incumbent Virginia Irwin for the clerk's job.

Burke replaced Trustee Doug Buster on the board. Buster didn't run for another term.

Barbini has been a trustee since 2009. Knight joined the board in 2005.

Bart wasn't the only Lake County mayor who took office Tuesday. In Round Lake Park, Linda Lucassen began her first term.

Lucassen defeated Kathleen Pender to win a 4-year term. She replaces Jean McCue, who didn't seek re-election.

"I am looking forward to working with the village of Round Lake Park residents and our business owners," Lucassen told the Daily Herald in an email.

Lucassen previously had served as village clerk and most recently as trustee.

Joining Lucassen on the dais are four candidates who ran with her in April: new Clerk Karen Eggert; new trustees Donna Wagner and Raeann McCarty-Robles; and incumbent Trustee Robert Cerretti.

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