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Post-election, coroner is only countywide newcomer

WOODSTOCK – Regardless of what happened at the polls Nov. 6, six candidates knew they would step into a countywide job because they ran unopposed.

All but one were incumbents, the sole newcomer being Anne Majewski, who will take over Dec. 1 as the first new coroner in McHenry County since Marlene Lantz took office in 1988.

“As [I’m] replacing someone who’s been there for a long time, I think probably my biggest challenge at the beginning will be to have people get used to having a new boss,” Majewski said.

She said she plans to have theme of “renewal” and start off with team building.

Majewski is a physician who has practiced as an ­obstetrican-gynecologist but more recently has worked in medical consulting. Her background in medicine, regardless of the field, will help in understanding the different medical problems that people have, she said.

“I hope people recognize the value that brings to the office,” Majewski said.

Other goals for Majewski include public outreach on issues such as suicide, teen death from traffic fatalities and drug use.

Majewski said Lantz should be applauded for her service to the county.

“I hope that I will do as good of a job or even better,” Majewski said.

Louis Bianchi is entering his third term as McHenry County state’s attorney.

To call his second term eventful is an understatement, he said.

Bianchi was indicted twice on official misconduct charges, but ultimately acquitted of all counts against him after two trials. His defense team never called a single witness.

Bianchi has sued the special prosecutors involved in the case against him, alleging the charges against him were part of a conspiracy driven by politics and money.

One of the special prosecutors, Henry C. Tonigan III, settled for $157,000, but the case is still ongoing against the other, Thomas McQueen.

Many called for Bianchi’s resignation once he was indicted, but he refused to step down.

He said the fact that he ran unopposed speaks for itself – people are supporting him in office even more than they did before.

Bianchi said he hopes to continue improving on programs that were instituted in his tenure, including the First Offender Program, as well as mental health and drug courts.

He said he hopes a domestic violence court will begin early next year or by midyear.

Bianchi also cited a long-standing campaign promise to save the county taxpayers money by handling civil cases in-house.

And he said he hopes this upcoming term will not be his last.

“I’m ending my second, four-year term,” Bianchi said. “Looking ahead, I’ve got eight down and eight more to go.”

The other uncontested races were for Circuit Clerk Katherine Keefe, Recorder Phyllis Walters and Auditor Pam Palmer.

Leslie Schermerhorn, who was appointed earlier this year to fill the regional superintendent vacancy, will fill the remaining two years of the unexpired term.

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