COD chairwoman chosen to fill in Bellock's House seat

Updated 7/16/2018 10:56 AM
  • Deanne Mazzochi

    Deanne Mazzochi

  • Patricia Bellock

    Patricia Bellock

The chairwoman of the College of DuPage board of trustees has been chosen to fill the state representative seat left vacant by the departure of Patti Bellock, a Hinsdale Republican, officials announced Monday.

Deanne Mazzochi, a 45-year-old Elmhurst Republican, will finish the remainder of Bellock's term, which expires in January. In the meantime, she will seek election to the position in November.

"I am looking forward to hitting the ground running," Mazzochi said of representing the 47th District, which covers all or portions of Clarendon Hills, Darien, Downers Grove, Elmhurst, Hinsdale, Lombard, Oak Brook, Oakbrook Terrace, Westmont and Willowbrook.

Mazzochi said communities in the district are accustomed to the "excellent services" Bellock provided and she is committed to maintaining them.

"Residents already have reached out to me on issues ranging from O'Hare and tollway expansion, redistricting, property taxes, budget, and social services," she said. "I'm excited to get started and direct my energy and experience learning and listening to find creative ways to help this district, and to advocate for good policy during the November legislative veto session."

Bellock, a deputy minority leader, had announced plans to leave the House in December. But she stepped down early last week after the governor appointed her to head the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services.

Mazzochi was chosen by a Republican selection committee to fill Bellock's seat.

"Deanne Mazzochi is a fiscally-responsible reformer dedicated to taxpayers and we're excited to send her to Springfield early," DuPage County GOP Chairman Brian Krajewski said in a statement.

Mazzochi has served as a COD board member since April 2015 and as chairwoman since December 2015.

As COD chairwoman, Mazzochi helped turn around the Glen Ellyn-based school after a string of controversies, Krajewski said.

"Thanks in large part to her leadership, it is now back on track as one of the best educational resources for our area," he said.

Mazzochi, an attorney, ran unopposed for the 47th House District seat during the March GOP primary. Her opponent in November is Democrat Jim Caffrey of Elmhurst, who left his post as a customer team manager for Clorox to focus on the campaign.

Mazzochi is planning to remain on the COD board through the fall election.

"The (state) legislative calender is not going to be particularly active until we get to January," she said, "so I feel fairly confident that I can manage both for that interim period."

She said she will resign from her COD seat if she's elected to a full term as a state representative.

While Mazzochi has been sworn in as a state representative, a ceremonial swearing in is scheduled for July 24 at Elmhurst College.

Mazzochi grew up in Villa Park and lives in Elmhurst with her husband and two children.

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