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Ballot taking sharp for March primary elections

<p>Photo by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/37763949@N00/2246225674/" target="_blank">Denise Cross Photography</a>, Flickr</p>

Photo by Denise Cross Photography, Flickr

The 2014 election season is taking shape following Monday’s filing deadline for county, state and congressional offices. The following is a list of candidates for the March Republican and Democratic primaries, which will set the stage for November 2014. Petition challenges may change the make-up of these races.

11th Congressional

Democrat Bill Foster of Naperville returned to Congress this year after defeating Hinsdale Republican Judy Biggert in this reddrawn district that stretches west to Aurora. He is unopposed in the Democratic primary, but five Republicans are seeking the nomination to challenge him in November. They are Naperville Republican Darlene Senger, serving in the Illinois House, Hinsdale resident Bert Miller, recently retired owner of Phoenix Closures in Naperville, Channahon resident Chris Balkema and Lisle resident Craig Robbins.

82nd State House

The lone candidate is Republican Jim Durkin of Western Springs, who seeks a fourth term. Durkin won his party’s support in August as House minority leader to succeed Tom Cross of Oswego, who left the post to run for state treasurer.

Durkin, 52, a former prosecutor and corporate litigation attorney, also served in the House from 1995 through 2002, when he left to run against Dick Durbin for U.S. Senate.

17th Cook County Board

Conservative Barbara Bellar, a physician from Burr Ridge, is challenging Elizabeth “Liz” Doody Gorman of Orland Park for the Republican nomination.

Gorman, 48, is seeking her fourth term. Gorman owns an insurance agency and also serves as chairperson of the County Board’s Suburban Caucus.

Bellar, a physician and attorney, ran unsuccessfully twice against Democrat Bill Cunningham for the state Senate’s 18th District in 2012 and the 35th House District in 2010.

Jim Hickey of Orland Park, president of the Orland Fire Protection District Board, is unopposed as the Democratic candidate. Hickey lost to Bill Foster in the 2012 primary for the 11th Congressional District.

DuPage County

DuPage County Board Chairman Dan Cronin of Elmhurst and Treasurer Gwen Henry of Wheaton, both Republicans, will face no opposition in the November 2014 election.

Democrat Mike Quiroz of West Chicago will take on incumbent Republican John Zaruba in the race for sheriff, and DuPage County Clerk candidate Paul Hinds will face opposition from Democrat Jean Kaczmarek of Glen Ellyn in November.

Peter DiCianni of Elmhurst will run unopposed for another term as representative of District 2 on the County Board. Incumbent John Curran of Woodridge will take on Democrat Pamela Miles of Downers Grove in DuPage County District 3 in November.

DuPage Forest District President

Two members of the DuPage County Forest Preserve District Board hope to fill the vacancy left by President D. “Dewey” Pierotti Jr.

After 15 years, Pierotti will not run for re-election. While no Democrats have chosen to vie for the job, Republicans Joseph Cantore of Oak Brook and Mary Lou Wehrli of Naperville will compete for a spot on the November ticket.

Elected to the board in 2002, Cantore served four years as a member of the Oakbrook Terrace City Council.

Before becoming a Forest Preserve commissioner in 2012, Wehrli served as co-chair of DuPage Neighbors for Open Space, Clean Water and Clean Air. She served a six-year term on the Naperville Park District Board of Commissioners, including one year as president.

In another contested Republican primary, Joseph Wozniak of Naperville will take on incumbent Linda Painter of Hinsdale in Forest Preserve District 3.

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