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The County of DuPage
Wheaton, Illinois

History & Background of the Commission

Election Commission Seal

Legislation passed in 1973 provided for the formation of this independent bipartisan agency in January 1974. The Election Commission is charged with the conduct of all federal, state, county and local elections occurring within its boundaries.

Presently, there are four regularly scheduled elections in a two-year cycle. Even-numbered year elections are the General Primary in March and the General Election in November; odd-numbered year elections are the Consolidated Primary Election in February and the Consolidated Election in April.

Every two years a training and certification session is conducted for the judges of election appointed to serve their parties in the precincts of DuPage County. Each judge is trained and tested in the proper procedures in the polling place.

A redistricting of precincts occurs in the odd-numbered years. This is required when the population of a precinct shifts and thereby calls for the redefinition of that precinct, as well as subsequent redefinitions or creation of other precincts. Maintaining political district lines as well as even population distribution between districts and formulating concrete boundary lines are some of the complicated tasks involved in redistricting.

Additionally, the Election Commission orchestrates the complete voter registration program. Overseeing the training and proper conduct of numerous deputy registrars is an ongoing procedure. Processing the newly registered and updating those currently registered falls within the jurisdiction of the Election Commission.

The Election Commission was instrumental in creating signature digitalization legislation and was the first in the state to implement it. This program eliminated in-office storage of bulky voter registration binders and their transport to the polling places on Election Day, in addition to saving several thousand dollars of taxpayers' money.

This is all accomplished under the auspices of a bipartisan Commission that is presently comprised of Cathy Terrill, Chairperson, James S. Lowe, Vice Chair and John Boske, Commissioner.

Suzanne Fahnestock is the appointed Interim Executive Director, with a staff of 20+. She is charged with the ongoing functions of elections including administration, budgeting, reporting, training, planning and forecasting.