McHenry County Democrat Kristina Zahorik will lead the Illinois Democratic County Chairs’ Association.
Zahorik, of Oakwood Hills, was unanimously elected president Saturday and will replace Rock Island County Democratic Chairman Doug House, who announced his resignation Wednesday so that he could spend more time with family, according to a news release from the organization.
“For nearly four years, the IDCCA has trusted me with leading the effort to grow our association’s relevance and impact within the Democratic Party,” House said in a statement. “I’m proud of the work we’ve done together. However, I’ve determined that the level of success we experienced on Election Day gives the IDCCA the opportunity to reinforce what works and recalibrate the focus on party-building in new ways.”
Zahorik, who serves as chairwoman of the Democratic Party of McHenry County, is the first woman to serve as president of the statewide association, according to the release.
“It feels pretty good,” Zahorik told the Northwest Herald, adding that she wants to continue “moving a grass-roots effort forward with our party.”
“I do think it’s important to have women as leaders in our party because it reflects – certainly in the last couple of years – the grass-roots efforts from a lot of women.”
Zahorik said she wants to talk to voters about Democratic values, not only elections.
“I think things like freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of religion, economic opportunities, educational opportunities,” she said.
Zahorik also is an elected party official, serving as state central committeewoman for Illinois’ 14th Congressional District, where Democrat Lauren Underwood of Naperville recently defeated incumbent Rep. Randy Hultgren, R-Plano.
In the coming weeks, Zahorik plans on highlighting projects that the IDCCA aims to undertake in an effort to maintain and grow Democratic Party strength, according to an IDCCA statement.
The IDCCA is composed of elected leaders from the state’s 102 counties. The organization aims to help elect Democrats in every county and region across the state and strengthen the Democratic Party.