-one-time WGFA employee and rural Watseka resident-
Vermilion County Judge Karen Wall has a chance to become a resident circuit judge after winning the Democratic nomination in Tuesday's primary.
A former Iroquois County resident (and former WGFA Radio employee), the 41-year-old of rural Danville, beat two local attorneys for her party's nomination and will now face Thomas M. O'Shaughnessy, the Vermilion County recorder of deeds and an attorney from Catlin, in November's general election.
O'Shaughnessy ran unopposed for the Republican nomination for the judge's seat. Unofficial election results show Wall garnered 1,311 votes while private attorney Dan Brown got 596 votes and private attorney Edwin Barney picked up 388.
Wall said Tuesday night that she is "very humbled by the results."
"The support I got from the citizens speaks volumes, and I'm pleased with the results," said Wall, who was a private attorney with the Spiros & Wall firm prior to being appointed an associate judge in 2010.
"With organization and the ongoing support that I've received, and hard work, I think that it will be a good race," she said.
In the three other contested primary races in Vermilion County on Tuesday:
County board District 1. In the Republican primary, incumbent Todd Johnson, 32, of Rossville, finished first in the three-way race with 640 votes.
Larry Baughn, 32, a Hoopeston alderman, received 604 votes and will join Johnson in moving on to November's general election. Newcomer Darrell Cambron, 59, of rural Rankin, finished third with 127 votes.
There are two open seats in District 1, and no Democrats have filed in a district that covers northern Vermilion County, including Hoopeston, Rossville, Rankin and Henning.
The other incumbent, Chris Leigh, R-Hoopeston, decided not to run.
Copas loses re-election bid in Iroquois County; Sheriff Bukowski wins in Kankakee County; Sheriff Doran wins 3-way race in Ford County
Incumbent Iroquois County Board Chairman Rod Copas lost a bid for re-election Tuesday. Copas was defeated in a 3-way race for two open seats in District 2. Former board member Dan Pursley of Loda and John Shure of Buckley were the top vote-getters in the district.
Also losing a seat in Iroquois County board District 3 was Marvin Stichnoth of Stockland. Newcomer Vince LaMie of Milford and incumbents Donna Crow and Troy Krunwiede were winners in District 3.
Ford County voters favored incumbent Mark Doran of Gibson City for re-election to the sheriff's office. He was challenged by Paxton Police Chief Bob Bane and Dennis Higgins of Gibson City. Higgins is the Ford County Emergency Management Agency Coordinator and a former police chief.
Incumbent Sheriff Tim Bukowski was a winner for re-election in Kankakee County, defeating Darryl Smith.
Milford area voters approve a new Unit School District
The Milford school district will form a new Unit District after voters approved a consolidation issue on Tuesday's ballot. The proposition asked if a unit district shall be established in the territory now making up the #280 grade school district and high school district #233. The referenda also allows the authority to levy taxes.
The matter was approved 522-209. It's a 71 to 28 percent margin.
Top vote-getters in a race to serve the new Unit school board are: Charles Leitz, Mark Tweedy, John Schoolman, Marry Ronna, James Kunce, Jeff Mabbitt, David Fox. There were also five other candidates.
Gilman voters approved home-rule status 56 to 43% (178 Yes and 136 No).
Watseka voters said No to the electric aggregation question on the ballot, 55 to 45%. There were 360 No votes to 294 Yes.
Stockland Township voters favored a road tax increase 81 to 19%. (58 in favor, 14 against).
COMMUNITY GARDEN TO RETURN FOR SIXTH SEASON ON THE ILLINOIS STATE FAIRGROUNDS
The Illinois Department of Agriculture (IDOA) is preparing for the sixth season of its Illinois State Fairgrounds Community Garden.
A meeting has been scheduled March 25 at 5:30 p.m. for new and returning gardeners. The meeting will be held in the IDOA Auditorium, located at the corner of Sangamon Ave. and 8th St. on the Illinois State Fairgrounds inside Gate 11. Weather permitting, the garden will open April 1.
Rupp Seeds and Syngenta are garden sponsors and will provide a variety of seeds, free of charge, to interested gardeners this year. Additionally, gardeners will have access to water, tools and compost. Garden mentoring is available to those who need it through the University of Illinois Master Gardener Program.
The garden, which is located on the infield of the Illinois State Fair Grandstand race track, was created six years ago to give individuals who do not have space for a garden a friendly and safe environment in which to grow fresh fruits and vegetables, flowers, herbs and other plants. Both organic and non-organic garden plots are available.
For more information, please visit www.agr.state.il.us/garden or call (217) 785-5594 or (217) 524-3297.