Former DuPage board member appointed to zoning panel
A former county board member who lost her reelection bid last year has been appointed to DuPage's zoning board of appeals.
Janice Marie Anderson of Naperville will fill a seat on the advisory committee that was last held by Mike Loftus. Her term runs through Dec. 1, 2022.
"I'm thrilled to get back into the development aspect of DuPage County," Anderson said Wednesday. "I want to continue to serve my county in any way I can."
Anderson spent two years representing District 5 on the county board after a previous stint as a Naperville Township trustee. District 5 covers all or parts of Aurora, Lisle, Naperville and Warrenville.
In a race for two District 5 seats last November, Anderson and another Republican were defeated by Democrats Sadia Covert of Naperville and Dawn DeSart of Aurora.
Anderson said she applied to fill the vacancy on the zoning board because she thought the position is a good fit. She served as a member of the Bolingbrook plan commission in the 1990s.
"Having the county experience that I do and having the municipal experience that I do should offer something to the zoning board of appeals," Anderson said. "I certainly take listening to residents' concerns very seriously. I think that's good for that board."
County board Chairman Dan Cronin said he chose Anderson, in part, because of her local government experience. Anderson also is the first woman to serve on the zoning board in a decade.
"We're always seeking more diversity on our boards and commissions," Cronin said.
But while 12 county board members supported Anderson's appointment, four of the panel's seven Democrats -- DeSart, Elizabeth Chaplin of Downers Grove, Julie Renehan of Hinsdale and Sheila Rutledge of West Chicago -- voted against it.
DeSart said she has no problem with Anderson, but voted "no" because Anderson already serves on the county's stormwater committee.
"It's not personal," DeSart said. "It's only about duplication."
With nearly 1 million people in the county, DeSart said Cronin could have found another woman for the vacancy.
But Cronin said Anderson was appointed by Naperville to be a municipal representative on the stormwater committee. "She only serves on one (committee) that we appoint," he said.
Covert, meanwhile, was among the board members who supported Anderson's appointment. She said Anderson is intelligent and reasonable.
"I look forward to working with her with any issues that come up with the ZBA," Covert said.