Candidates file for Kane County Board and countywide offices

Election season got into full swing Monday as candidates in Kane County filed their nominating petitions for the June primary.

All county board seats are up for election this year due to redistricting. Voters also will elect a sheriff, a treasurer, a county clerk and a regional superintendent of schools. Candidates lined up early Monday in the hopes of securing a top spot on the ballot. The filing period ends March 14.

Though Kane County Clerk Jack Cunningham did not file his petitions Monday, he said he plans to seek reelection.

“I like being in public administration,” Cunningham said Monday. He will seek his sixth term as Kane County clerk and expects to file his petitions before March 14. “I have a few things I want to finish.”

During his tenure, he opened a satellite office in Aurora and is working to open one in Elgin. He added he would like to continue overseeing work to update election equipment.

Cunningham will face Republican challenger Douglas Warlick, a Geneva attorney, in the June election. Warlick, who could not be reached for comment, filed his petitions for office Monday.

Former Kane County Board Chairman Chris Lauzen was among the first to file at the county clerk's office Monday as he turned in paperwork to run for county treasurer. Democrat Jeffrey Pripusich also filed for treasurer.

Lauzen, who served as county board chairman for eight years, said he wanted to be a “spending watchdog” for the county's money. He pointed to several county expenditures he considered wasteful, including employing a lobbyist and the recent hiring of a public information officer.

“If somebody is not satisfied with what's going on in any level of government, rather than complain about it, do something about it,” said Lauzen, an accountant who also served in the Illinois Senate for 20 years.

Pripusich, who lives in North Aurora and has worked in corporate accounting for the past 37 years, said he decided to run to give back to his community.

“I love my town and my county,” he said, adding he hopes to bring a “breath of fresh air” to the office and to collaborate with the county's finance department.

Republican county board members Bill Lenert, District 5; Tom Koppie, District 9; David Brown, District 10; Kenneth Shepro, District 12; Todd Wallace, District 13; Mark Davoust; District 14; Michael Kenyon, District 16; and Cliff Surges, District 21, filed for reelection.

Shepro is being challenged by Bill Roth in District 12, and Wallace will face challenger Stephen Brown in District 13 in the primary. Koppie will face challenger Gary Daugherty for the Republican nomination in District 9.

Incumbent John Martin, a Republican representing District 11, is not seeking reelection. Geneva Republican Brian Jones filed petitions for Martin's seat.

“I'd like to continue the efficient operation of the Kane County Board,” said Jones, a Chicago attorney. “I think John has done a good job for District 11, and I'd like to continue that service.”

Barb Wojnicki, a longtime Republican county board member from Campton Township, said she has gathered her petition signatures but as of Monday was undecided if she would seek election to another term representing District 15. Wojnicki was first elected to the county board in 1998. Republican David Young filed his petitions to represent the district Monday.

Democrat county board members Myrna Molina, District 1; Dale Berman, District 2; Anita Marie Lewis, District 3; Mavis Bates, District 4; Ron Ford, District 6; Monica Silva, District 7; Michelle Gumz, District 8; Mohammad “Mo” Iqbal, District 19; Cherryl Fritz Strathmann, District 20; Verner (Vern) Tepe, District 22; and Christopher Kious, District 23, filed petitions for reelection.

Lewis faces Democrat challenger Danny Perez in the primary. In District 11, Democrats Leslie Juby and Walter Lindwall filed their petitions for candidacy Monday.

Democrats Deirdre Battaglia, District 5; Steve Bruesewitz, District 12; Michael Linder, District 13; and Ted Penesis, District 16, also filed Monday. The Democrats filed for seats currently held by Republican incumbents.

Cunningham said the clerk's office will hold a lottery to determine ballot positions in instances where more than one person filed for a spot when the clerk's office opened Monday.

• Daily Herald staff writer Rick West contributed to this report.

  County board member Cherryl Fritz Strathmann signs some paperwork during the first day of candidate filing at the Kane County clerk's office Monday in Geneva. Rick West/
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