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Government

DuPage County Election Commission director retires amid consolidation talks

Executive Director Robert Saar will retire from his position at the DuPage County Election Commission on March 14. 

Chairwoman Cathy Ficker Terrill announced Saar’s retirement during the Jan. 23 Election Commission meeting, according to a written copy of her comments provided by DuPage County spokeswoman Joan Olsen.

She also shared Saar will be using his accrued time off through the date of his retirement.

Joseph Sobecki, who has been with the Election Commission for 17 years, will be the interim executive director for the commission. Sobecki has served as assistant executive director for the past five years. 

The news of Saar’s retirement comes soon after the Dec. 14 County Board meeting where there was a proposal for a plan to consolidate the county clerk and Election Commission.

County Board Chairman Dan Cronin introduced the idea and said at the time, "When it comes to elections, there's something very sacred about it. We here in DuPage County want to make sure we have the faith and trust and confidence of the public.”

Olsen said Jan. 30 Cronin didn't have any comment beyond those he made at the Dec. 14 meeting.

Saar has been with the Election Commission since 1981, when he started as a data processing supervisor. He then became assistant to the director from 1991 to 1997, until the Election Commission board members appointed him executive director. 

According to the Election Commission website, "Saar strives to keep the Election Commission on the leading edge of technology." He played a key role in the introduction of legislation for the development of signature digitization in Illinois.

Saar grew up in Downers Grove and graduated from Western Illinois University in 1979 with a bachelor’s degree in communications. He currently resides in Wheaton.

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