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updated: 3/28/2014 6:08 PM

Farnham's replacement to be selected Saturday

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  • Kevin Echevarria

      Kevin Echevarria

  • Cristina Castro

      Cristina Castro

  • Anna Moeller

      Anna Moeller

 
 

Democratic Party leaders will meet Saturday to select a new state representative for the 43rd District, who will take the oath of office Sunday, officials said Friday afternoon.

Elgin businessman Kevin Echevarria is among candidates who have been interviewed by Democratic officials for the seat left vacant after Keith Farnham resigned March 19, Kane County Democratic Party Chairman Mark Guethle confirmed Friday.

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Another candidate is Elgin Councilwoman Anna Moeller. Kane County Board member Cristina Castro said she also talked to Democratic officials about the vacant House seat.

Echevarria, 26, a lifelong Elgin resident, co-owns Rria Foods in Elgin. He is a former Democratic precinct committeeman, he said.

He unsuccessfully ran for a seat on the Elgin Area School District U-46 board at age 21. He is now a member of the design committee of the Elgin Charter School Initiative, which wants to open a new charter school in Elgin.

Echevarria said that although he always intended to run for office someday, he was surprised to get a call from Democratic officials after Farnham resigned.

"I would have never thought I'd be on anybody's list," he said.

"With that said, I would do it. That's an opportunity that doesn't come along very often, even if it's very bad circumstances. The worst circumstances ever."

Farnham cited "serious health issues" in his resignation, which came a few days after U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations officials said they executed a warrant at his Elgin office looking for evidence of possession of child pornography. Officials said his home was searched as well.

Farnham was unopposed in the March 18 primary. No Republican has yet filed to run in the district, which includes most of Elgin and portions of Barrington Hills, Carpentersville, East Dundee and South Elgin.

The new state representative will be sworn in at 2 p.m. Sunday at Baker Hill Restaurant, 1279 Dundee Ave., Elgin, said Marty McCormack, a state House Democratic staff member.

"Hopefully it will be a solid person who can step in and serve during the remainder of the legislature, and be a good candidate in November," said Steve Brown, spokesman for House Speaker Michael Madigan.

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