ST. CHARLES – Ray Rogina said Tuesday he can't thank the people of St. Charles enough for having the faith and trust to be their next mayor.
"I assure them it won't go unnoticed by me," he said by phone, pausing at times to respond to supporters in person.
Rogina, a sitting 3rd Ward alderman on the St. Charles City Council, soundly defeated the three other men seeking to lead the city. According to unofficial results in Kane and DuPage counties, he received 2,031 votes.
Jake Wyatt received 989, John Rabchuk got 726 and Jotham Stein netted 600, according to the unofficial tallies.
"That's the way it goes," Rabchuk said, noting he called Rogina to congratulate him.
Rabchuk and Wyatt thanked their supporters, and both said it is too early to know whether they will run for office again.
"I will still be active in the community, and I will do whatever I can to help Mr. Rogina have a successful term," Wyatt said.
Stein did not return a call seeking comment.
Rogina's election to mayor results in an open 3rd Ward seat. City administrator Brian Townsend has said Rogina will be able to nominate someone for the balance of his 3rd Ward term and could do so by calling for applications; the process is up to Rogina. The nominee will have to receive City Council approval, Townsend said.
Rogina said the process will be open and transparent, and he wants the City Council to be involved.
Pledging he will be a good guardian of the City of St. Charles, Rogina declined to go into specifics Tuesday but said a lot of issues were brought up during the campaign.
"It's a great city already," Rogina said. "Like any entity, we can always do better."
As for the changes on the City Council – unofficial results indicated incumbents Jon Monken and Cliff Carrignan lost their seats – Rogina said he worked well with his current colleagues on the council and expects the same with the new aldermen, Ron Silkaitis and Art Lemke.
"I can work with anybody," Rogina said.
Rogina, 65, was first elected to the City Council in 2011. He taught at St. Charles East High School from 1972 to 2002 and has been an instructor at Aurora University since 1997.
He and his wife, Diane, have one son, Matthew.