Photo by Joe Boyle
Oak Lawn Mayor Sandra Bury defeated challenger Bob Streit in Tuesday's election.
Oak Lawn Mayor Sandra Bury had a lot more than just her own victory to celebrate at her post-election party on Tuesday at The Whistle bar.
Following a very heated race against Trustee Bob Streit (3rd), who sought to deny her a second term in office, Bury ended up winning by a large margin. And all three trustee candidates allied with her won their seats as well, denying Streit’s team any victory.
With all votes tallied, according to the Cook County Clerk’s office, Bury won with 59.42 percent of the votes cast (5,393) to 40.58 percent for Streit (3,683).
“This is a big, big victory for Oak Lawn. The voters saw through the negativity and they want to end that,” said the mayor, an optometrist who owns Complete Vision Care in the village.
Streit was accused of making unfounded accusations against valuable businesses in campaign material, and stirring up fears about public safety by focusing on a recent spike in armed robberies and other violent incidents rather than overall downward trends in crime.
“I want to thank everyone who came out to vote. Thank God for the people of Oak Lawn. They got our message. I just want to thank them all,” she said.
Trustee Alex Olejniczak (2nd) won his bid for a fourth term in office with 71.42 percent of the votes (982) to 28.58 percent (393) for Glenn Schlesser, a former 911 dispatcher in the village. His was the widest victory of all the trustees.
“I’m a guy from the neighborhood. We’re not perfect but we’re getting better,” said Olejniczak at the victory party. “I care so much about this village, and I am honored to be elected again.
Trustee Terry Vorderer (4th) also won re-election to a second term in office. According to unofficial results, he received 65.46 percent of the votes (889) to 34.54 percent (469) for John Koss, another ally of Streit.
The winner of the 6th District seat, left open when Mike Carberry decided not to run for re-election, is a familiar face. Former trustee and Bury adviser Thomas Phelan regained the seat he stepped down from four years ago. He received 59.75 percent of the votes (1,079) to 40.25 percent (727) for Jozettemarie Palermo.
Village Clerk Jane Quinlan ran unopposed for election to her fourth term in office.
“It was a long five-month campaign. I think the results are very productive for the village of Oak Lawn. I am looking forward to a lot of good things happening in these next four years,” said Vorderer.
“This whole team is great to work with. How great is it to be able to run with such a great group of people,” said Bury.
“I am going to take one day off, and then get back to taking care of the people’s business,” said the mayor. “It is time to get rid of the negative messages and replace it with a positive message about this village.”