Tuesday's election: Key races in the Northwest suburbs
Much friction has been generated in the three-way race to succeed Schaumburg Mayor Al Larson's 32-year tenure, but it's only one of several heated races in the Northwest suburbs drawing voters to the polls Tuesday.
Longtime trustee Tom Dailly and newcomers Nafees Rahman and Matthew Steward have sparred throughout the winter over their differing visions for Schaumburg, which trails only Chicago as the largest center of economic activity in the state.
While Rahman established an early and consistent platform of reducing the village's debt, Dailly insisted that debt is under control, as evidenced by Schaumburg's top-level, AAA bond rating. He, in turn, argued his experience makes him the best option to maintain the village's economic growth and quality of life.
Steward stayed largely above the fray as the others engaged in intense campaigning in through mailers and TV commercials, and proudly identified himself as the only candidate for mayor or trustee who favors continuing Schaumburg's ban of video gambling.
Competing for three available seats on the Schaumburg village board are incumbents George Dunham and Mark Madej, who along with zoning board member Brian Bieschke are allied with Dailly; newcomers Dhitu Bhagwakar and Rocco Terranova running on a slate with Rahman; and fellow newcomer Scott Felgenhauer.
Rolling Meadows boasts an even more widely contested mayoral race, with incumbent Len Prejna facing challenges from aldermen John D'Astice and Joe Gallo, and Planning and Zoning Committee Vice Chair Dave Whitney. The race has put a spotlight on infighting among city council members, particularly in light of allegations Gallo verbally harassed fellow Alderman Laura Majikes during a recent session.
Majikes, who represents the city's 3rd Ward, is among the aldermen seeking re-election. She's being challenged by former police department employee Deborah Bancah and Rolling Meadows Park District board member Kevin O'Brien.
In the 5th Ward, Planning and Zoning Commission Chairman Jon Bisesi is running against former Alderman Glenn Adams and park district employee Joe Szafran. In the 7th Ward, incumbent Alderman Robert Williams is being challenged by Lara Sanoica.
Village President Beverly Sussman's bid for a second term is challenged by former trustee Mike Terson. The pair have sparred over economic development, particularly previously rejected proposals to redevelop the Buffalo Grove Golf Club.
Voters also will choose from a crowded field of nine candidates for three trustee seats.
Mayoral contests also are taking place in Prospect Heights, where Mayor Nick Helmer's run for a third term faces a challenge from Ward 2 Alderman Larry Rosenthal, and North Barrington, where Village President Albert Pino is being challenged by Eleanor Sweet McDonnell, a longtime member of the village's fire and plan commission.
Village board races
Among village trustee races, five candidates are seeking four available seats on the Arlington Heights village board. They are incumbents Robin LaBedz and John Scaletta, zoning board of appeals member Tom Schwingbeck, Northgate Civic Association President Laurie Taylor and management consultant Mary Beth Canty,
Six candidates -- one a write-in -- are seeking three available trustee seats in Mount Prospect. On the ballot are incumbents Paul Hoefert, Richard Rogers and Colleen Saccotelli, planning and zoning commission member Augie Filippone and newcomer Yulia Bjekic. Another newcomer, Jeffrey Nejdl, is asking voters to write him in.
In Wheeling, village trustees Ray Lang, Joe Vito and David Vogel are seeking re-election, but facing challenges from Maryann Rodriguez Liguori, longtime critic Deborah Wilson and law student Asher Horcher, who is the daughter of Village President Pat Horcher.
The imminent retirement of Elk Grove Village's longest serving trustee, James Petri, has created the first open seat on the board in 22 years. The six candidates in the race for three available seats are incumbents Nancy Czarnik and Sam Lissner, along with retired police chief Stephen Schmidt, business owner Julee Mortensen, businessman Scott Saxe and Laborers Union Local 6 President Jeff Ziemann.
While Palatine-Schaumburg High School District 211 Board of Education President Mucia Burke isn't seeking re-election, fellow board incumbents Peter Dombrowski, Will Hinshaw and Steven Rosenblum are. Joining them in the race for the four available seats are newcomers Kim Cavill, Mark Cramer and Matthew Saternus.
In Palatine Township Elementary District 15, eight candidates are seeking three school board seats. Joining incumbent Zubair Khan on the ballot are Samantha Bray Ader, Adam Bauske, Yuriy Figel, Wenda Hunt, Lisa Krams, Nina Palit and James Taylor.
In Elk Grove Township Elementary District 59, seven candidates are vying for the three available seats on the school board.
Four-decade incumbent Barbara Somogyi is running again and is joined by Dan Naumowicz, Patti Petrielli, James Goranson, Lisa Griffin, and the two-person slate of Courtney Lang and Randy Reid.
To view candidate profiles and earlier articles in all races, visit dailyherald.com/news/politics/election.