Self-proclaimed independent newcomer Russell Nummer and incumbent village trustees Patrick O'Brien and Nancy Dillon won seats on the River Forest village board Tuesday. O'Brien, a six-year board veteran, led the vote totals with 1,150, followed by 4-term incumbent Dillon with 1,070. Nummer appeared to edge fellow challenger James Winikates 1,050 to 1,019, the unofficial vote total as of 9:30 p.m.
O'Brien said he was pleased that voters thought enough of his previous service to support him as strongly as they did.
"I'm humbled that the residents feel that good about me," he said. The election results, he said, are a reaffirmation of both the board's and Village President Frank Paris' direction the past four years.
"This is a reaffirmation of [Frank Paris'] policies and the direction he's led the village," said O'Brien.
O'Brien said that he looked forward to tackling a full agenda and working hard for River Forest residents the next four years. Key among those issues, he said, will be "keeping the development engine going," and working to find ways to keep the village's real estate tax burden low.
"Yahoo," replied Nummer with a laugh to a request for comment on his election.
Taking a moment to think, Nummer, the village's former fire chief who has expressed concern during the campaign with what he terms a lack of initiative on the board to bring forth issues for deliberation, said he looked forward to working with both his fellow trustees and Paris, as well as village staff. He also said he's ready to begin immediately to get himself up to speed with the rest of his new colleagues on the issues they'll be dealing with over the next year.