Hart, DiCianni raising big money in the race to succeed DuPage County chairman

  • Greg Hart

    Greg Hart

  • Peter DiCianni

    Peter DiCianni

 
 
Updated 10/22/2021 6:10 PM

The two Republican candidates vying to succeed DuPage County Board Chairman Dan Cronin have collectively raised more than $800,000 in campaign cash, setting the stage for an expensive primary contest.

Greg Hart and Pete DiCianni, both sitting county board members, have drawn donor interest from across the region as the GOP hopes to regain political ground in a county that has tilted blue in recent elections.

 

DiCianni held an early fundraising edge over Hart, but the latest campaign finance reports show they're virtually neck and neck in the race for money eight months before the June primary.

Hart collected $353,049 through September, according to financial disclosures filed with the state board of elections. In this month alone, his campaign reported raising $59,000, putting his total haul so far at $412,049.

Among his biggest backers, Craig Duchossois, son of Arlington Park's chairman emeritus and a conservative benefactor, pumped $10,000 into Hart's campaign coffers in the last quarter. The Duchossois Group moved its company headquarters from Elmhurst to Chicago about four years ago.

Hart received $1,000 from Steven Galanis, the co-founder and CEO of Cameo, a social media app where users pay for video messages from celebrities. Tonia Khouri, a former state House candidate, and Deerfield-based Walgreens also contributed $500 and $250, respectively.

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DiCianni, a nearly decadelong board member and former Elmhurst mayor, raked in $410,353 through September. A $1,000 donation this month from Roberto's Ristorante & Pizzeria in Elmhurst brought his fundraising total to $411,353, records show.

The biggest donors on DiCianni's side include First Trust Portfolios, a Wheaton-based firm that shelled out $10,000. Jim Ryan & Associates Inc., the law firm of the former Illinois attorney general, and CDM Smith, an engineering company, each donated $2,500 in September. DiCianni also received $1,000 from the campaign fund of Oakbrook Terrace Mayor Paul Esposito and $1,500 from Comcast.

On the Democratic side, Liz Chaplin and fellow board member Lynn LaPlante are running for the county's top seat, held by Cronin, the departing GOP incumbent, for almost 12 years.

Chaplin's most recent disclosures show a $1,000 donation from the political action committee of IBEW Local 701, an electrical workers union. Chaplin was first elected to the board in 2012.

LaPlante poured $2,900 of her own money into her campaign, according to a financial report filed this week. She won her board seat in November 2020.

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