ST. CHARLES – With his wife and son by his side, Ray Rogina on Monday officially vacated his post as 3rd Ward alderman and became St. Charles mayor.
Reading from a prepared speech, Rogina thanked his supporters, saying he will do his best to uphold the trust they have in him.
“We all recognize that together there is work to do,” he said. “We do not rest on any laurels; we know that together we can take St. Charles to greater heights and in doing so leave an additional legacy for those who follow.”
Outgoing Mayor Don DeWitte said an emotional goodbye to a standing-room-only crowd at the conclusion of his last City Council meeting, which was held before the new elected officials were sworn in.
DeWitte, who was mayor for eight years, thanked his wife, city staff, aldermen and residents.
“I’ve done the best I can,” he said.
To his colleagues on the council, he added, “We couldn’t have done it without each other.”
DeWitte recognized outgoing 1st Ward Alderman Jon Monken, who lost his seat to Ron Silkaitis, and 2nd Ward Alderman Cliff Carrignan, who lost by a few votes to Art Lemke.
Monken said it was an honor and pleasure to serve the community that has given his family so much.
Carrignan, who also prepared a speech, thanked his colleagues, staff and wife.
But he hasn’t given up on the 2nd Ward seat.
A recount is scheduled for Thursday morning, he said. Carrignan acknowledged it is “extraordinarily rare” for an aldermanic race to be overturned but, he said you never know the answer if you never ask.
“It’s five votes,” Carrignan said. “It’s not over until it’s over.”
Others who took the oath of office Monday were Treasurer Warren Drewes, Clerk Nancy Garrison, 3rd Ward Alderman Bill Turner, 4th Ward Alderman Jo Krieger and 5th Ward Alderman Maureen Lewis.
Rogina reminded residents that the deadline to apply for his vacant 3rd Ward seat is May 17.
Applicants must submit a letter of interest and resume. Materials can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed or dropped off at City Hall, 2 E. Main St., St. Charles, IL 60174.
In other news, the old City Council extended the employment agreement with City Administrator Brian Townsend by 30 days; it expired at the end of DeWitte’s term.
The extension lets the new council discuss any long-term extension, which it will do in executive session at its next meeting, Rogina said.