There won’t be many new faces in La Salle City Hall after this past April 6 election, but two outgoing officials definitely will be missed as they were honored Monday night for their services to the city.
Aldermen Jim Bacidore, Tom Ptak, John “Doc” Lavieri, Treasurer Virginia Kochanowski and Mayor Jeff Grove all were re-sworn into their positions after winning uncontested races. Circuit Judge Cynthia Raccuglia performed the ceremonial swearing in of elected officials Monday.
The council will be moderated by the newly elected City Clerk Amy Quinn. Quinn will assume the duties previously performed by Carrie Brown, who decided not to pursue re-election.
Grove thanked Brown for all her dedication and help throughout the years for what she described as being critical in many programs and events the community continues to enjoy.
Brown had joined to help rebuild the La Salle Promotional and Advisory Committee. LPAC organizes four main community events each year, including Irish Fun Day, Celebrate La Salle, Our Hometown Halloween and Miracle on First Street.
She then served many years as city clerk, where she helped manage many essential city functions. Grove described Brown as instrumental in creating the “I believe in La Salle” mantra that continues to be a motto throughout the city.
At Monday’s meeting, Grove presented Brown with a plaque commemorating her dedication to the city while wishing her the best of luck in whatever lies ahead.
“All I can say is it’s truly been an honor to serve as city clerk,” Brown said. “It was a job I really knew nothing about, but I managed to find my way and I truly appreciate the mayor giving me the opportunity early on working with this council that is really some of the best men I know.”
Brown said that although she is excited to hand off duties to her successor, it was the relationships and the people she worked with she will miss most.
Brown wasn’t the only familiar face to say goodbye Monday, as longtime Fire Chief Andy Bacidore also was honored for his longtime commitment to the La Salle Fire Department.
Bacidore spent 38 years with the department and 24 years at its head, overseeing change and growth in the department that came to include the ambulance service. He also helped form this area’s MABAS Division, which stands for the Mutual Aid Box Alarm System.
He first took over the position in 1997 from his father, Bill Bacidore, who was chief for 20 years. Grove thanked Bacidore for everything he has done in his time with the city.
“It will be unusual for us in La Salle not to have ‘Bacidore’ at the end of our Fire Chief,” Grove said with a laugh.
Bacidore has left behind his title of fire chief but will continue to be involved with the city of La Salle as its building inspector. Bacidore thanked everyone who had a part in his years serving as chief, from elected officials to businesses to, most of all, his family.
“As a lot of you know I had a big vision loss and it really threw me for a life change,” Bacidore said. “It’s this council up here that still kept their trust in me and for that I’m very thankful, so thank you very much.”
Jerry Janick subsequently was appointed to the position of fire chief and was sworn in during Monday’s meeting.
“It’s an honor, especially to follow (Bacidore) my whole career,” Janick said. “Now we just have to move forward and build on what he did.”
Janick has served with the La Salle Fire Department for 37 years, as a paid on-call firefighter for 12 years and more recently for 25 years as a full-time employee.
The city also approved at Monday’s meeting the appointments for the positions of superintendent of public works, economic development director, city attorney, finance director, police chief, assistant fire chief, city engineer, administrative assistant to the mayor, park director and director of public relations and community development.