DuPage County Board incumbents gearing up for primary competition

Seven DuPage County Board members will have to fend off primary challengers in their reelection bids.

Contested Republican primary races are expected in three of the six county board districts. Democrats will have two competitive races on the spring ballot.

Every seat on the 18-member board will be up for election because of new political boundaries.

Democrats are seeking to preserve and expand their board majority in the one-time Republican bastion.

At the top of the ticket, state Rep. Deb Conroy will run unopposed in the Democratic primary for county board chair. Conroy filed nominating petitions Monday afternoon.

Greg Hart and Pete DiCianni will square off in the Republican primary for the county's top elected post. The winner will face Conroy in November's general election.

The filing period for candidates to place their names on the ballot ended Monday evening with some eleventh-hour competition on the GOP side. Here's a look at who's running in some of the most closely watched races:

District 1

DuPage NAACP President Michael Childress is the sole Democrat running for three available seats representing the northeastern portion of the county. He declared his candidacy hours before the filing deadline expired.

Ashley Selmon, who won election in her first run for political office during a blue wave in November 2018, didn't file to run for a second term.

Republican voters, however, will choose three nominees from among five candidates to advance to the November general election. Two of the five are incumbents Don Puchalski and Sam Tornatore.

The challengers are Cynthia Cronin Cahill, an Elmhurst accountant and the sister of departing county board Chairman Dan Cronin, Maria Reyes of Addison, and Elmhurst Alderman Bob Dunn.

District 2

Six Republican candidates are slated to compete in the county's most crowded primary race.

Three last-minute GOP hopefuls emerged Monday: John Simpson of Westmont; Jennifer Veremis, an Elmhurst city council member; and Nicole Giannini of Villa Park.

The other candidates filed last week: Daniel Kordik, an attorney and former state House candidate who lost to Conroy in 2012; Sean Noonan, a former county board member and Bloomingdale police officer; and Grant Dungan of Elmhurst.

Incumbents Liz Chaplin and Paula Deacon Garcia won't have a clear path to the Democratic nominations. Yeena Yoo and Maryann Vazquez also are running for their party's nod.

Deacon Garcia defeated Noonan two years ago.

District 3

Both parties have been spared a primary fight in the southeastern part of the county.

Republican incumbent Brian Krajewski, an attorney from Downers Grove, is running along with Greg Abbott, a Woodridge village trustee and attorney, and Kari Galassi of Hinsdale.

The Democratic ticket features Lucy Chang Evans, a civil engineer and former Naperville City Council candidate, and Amanda Roudebush of Hinsdale. Board member Julie Renehan decided not to seek reelection.

District 4

Four Democrats are hoping to be among the three nominees moving on to November's election.

Lynn LaPlante bowed out of the race for county board chair and will instead run to keep her seat. Mary Ozog is another Glen Ellyn incumbent. Gary Fasules is a current Glen Ellyn trustee whose term doesn't expire until 2025. Another challenger, Shawn Ryan, also is from Glen Ellyn.

The Republican primary is expected to narrow a field of four candidates to three.

A decadelong incumbent, Grant Eckhoff has launched his reelection campaign. Three challengers have jumped into the primary fray: Reid Foltyniewicz, a former Lombard trustee and an administrative sergeant in the Oak Brook Police Department; Annette Corrigan, a College of DuPage trustee from Wheaton; and Paula McGowen, who sits on the regional board of school trustees.

Eckhoff is a Wheaton attorney who previously served on the city council.

District 5

There are no contested primaries for the three seats representing the southwestern portion of DuPage.

Democrats Amy Chavez, Sadia Covert and Dawn DeSart filed to run for reelection last Monday.

The GOP contenders are Richard Janor, a Naperville Park District commissioner; Janice Anderson, a former county board member from Naperville; and Patricia "Patty" Gustin, a sitting Naperville city councilwoman.

District 6

Jim Zay, the board's longest-serving member, has no primary challenge from within the GOP. Christine Winger, a two-term state lawmaker and former Wood Dale city council member, and former county board member Bob Larsen round out the Republican field.

Newcomer Jaime Ricklefs of Warrenville filed Monday afternoon to join incumbents Greg Schwarze and Sheila Rutledge on the Democratic side.

Two years ago, Schwarze, a former Carol Stream village trustee and firefighter, defeated Larsen, an attorney and former Marine who was first elected to the seat in 2010.

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