By the end of the day Thursday – the deadline for prospective candidates to file their intent to run as write-in candidates with the county – 28 people had signed up for a smattering of McHenry County mayoral, village board, library board, school board and fire protection district board races.
Write-in candidates face an uphill battle in defeating candidates whose names appear on the ballot, but by throwing their hats into the ring, they’ll make the Crystal Lake mayoral, Cary Village Board, Lakewood Village Board, Harrison School District 36 Board, Prairie Grove School District 46 Board and the Fox Waterway Agency Board of Directors races competitive.
Crystal Lake mayoral candidate Sascha Chadwick decided to run as a write-in candidate after he was kicked off the ballot by a municipal electoral board back in December.
The incumbent mayor, Aaron Shepley, had filed the objection, which pointed to Chadwick’s failure to number and staple his petition papers as required by state election law.
Two write-in candidates – Kimberly Covelli and Jim Cosler – joined the race for the Cary Village Board, adding their names to the three that will appear on the ballot. There are three seats up in April.
Cosler was the leader of a group opposing the Pedcor Investments project, an apartment complex at First and Pearl streets that drew hundreds to Village Board meetings. He pulled two nomination packets but hadn’t filed them by the December deadline to appear on the ballot.
Four people – Benjamin Washow, Mary Ruys, Brian Hauck and Bruce Ritter, all of Cary – filed as write-in candidates for Cary District 26, and another four — Matthew Meyer of Richmond, Eric Dowd of McHenry, Kelly Liebmann of Wonder Lake and Paul Serwatka of Lakewood – will run for the McHenry County Regional Board of Education, which has one person on the ballot for four slots.
Serwatka also will challenge the three incumbents running for the Lakewood Village Board as a write-in candidate.
In Harrison District 36, the only candidate for an unexpired two-year term, Bob Anderson, will be challenged by write-in candidate Kelly Didier of Wonder Lake.
Other write-in candidates are likely shoe-ins, running for seats in races where not enough candidates filed.
That’s the case for Bryan Millard of Marengo for the Riley Community Consolidated School District 18 Board; David Moore of Huntley ,who filed for the Huntley Public Library District’s board; incumbent Madelyn Diedrich of McHenry, who filed for the Johnsburg Public Library District’s board; Fatima Sanchez of Lake in the Hills, who filed as a write-in candidate for the Algonquin Area Public Library District’s board; Cynthia Allen Schenk, who filed for the Marengo-Union Public Library District’s board; incumbents Bradley Schubert and Margaret Carey, who both filed for the McHenry Public Library’s board; Jerry Miceli of Woodstock, who filed for Woodstock District 200; and incumbent Stephen Young of Wonder Lake, who filed for the Wonder Lake Fire Protection District Board of Trustees.
That also will be the case for a write-in candidate that filed for District 300. The Kane County Clerk’s Office is withholding the candidate’s name because the filing was incomplete.
Some candidates who filed as write-ins will face some competition.
Two write-in candidates each filed for the Prairie Grove School District 46 Board and Fox Waterway Agency’s two open McHenry County seats, both of which have three open seats but only two names on the ballot.
They include Barclay Butler and incumbent James Kastner for District 46 and William Hellyer and Barry Lemcke for the Fox Waterway Agency.
The Kane County Clerk’s Office reported no write-in candidates for the districts that fell in both McHenry and Kane counties, and the Lake County Clerk’s Office did not return a phone call asking for the list of write-in candidates.