McHenry County Democrats Elect Kathy Bergan Schmidt as New Chair

Since it is impossible to be two places at the same time, I rely upon the following press release to tell you what happened Wednesday night at the organization convention of the McHenry County Democratic Central Committee. The meeting was held at the Woodstock Opera House.

The photo of Kathy Bergan Schmidt, the Democrats’ new head, was also supplied by that party.


CRYSTAL LAKE—Cheers and applause greeted Kathleen (Kathy) Bergan Schmidt of Crystal Lake as she was unanimously elected the new Chair of the Democratic Party of McHenry County. Schmidt steps up from a term as Vice Chair to succeed Tom Cynor.

Cynor stepped down as chair citing family responsibilities. His second child, a daughter, was born on Primary night, February 5. Cynor will remain on the executive board, however, as the new Treasurer.

Sam Melei, previously the party’s General Council was elected Vice Chair and party veteran Patrick Murfin was elected secretary.

Bergan Schmidt, currently running for a seat on the County Board from District 3, credited her experience as a candidate with giving her a special insight into the needs of those who put themselves before the voters. She ran previously for Nunda Township Trustee and for the County Board in 2006.

Her service to the party has included a term as Secretary. As Vice Chair she was in charge of the Election Services Committee that recruits candidates and offers them training and technical support; was responsible for the electronic voter file system the party uses; oversaw the recruitment of election judges and poll watchers; and kept the party abreast of changes in election law.

Bergan Schmidt’s involvement in McHenry County matters began with her membership in the Planning and Development Committee of the Fox Valley Freeway Advisory Committee in the early 1990’s. She has also been active in the McHenry County IL Genealogical Society, the McHenry County Historical Society, the Wildflower Preservation and Propagation Committee, and the McHenry County Breast Cancer Task Force. She currently represents the “Historical” stakeholders on the Imagine McHenry County Board of Directors.

Citing the philosophy of the late Minnesota Senator Paul Welstone, Bergan Schmidt promised to marry the traditional “boots on the ground” organization of Precinct Representatives and volunteers going door to door with the sophisicated electronic tools that have empowered a whole new generation of political activists.

After the election of officers, the convention broke up into County Board District caucuses to elect County Board District Chairs. District Chairs work with local Precinct Representatives to build the party and provide information to the electorate. District Chairs also sit on the Party Executive Committee with the elected officers.

The new District Chairs are

  • Brian McTague in District 1,
  • Carolyne Quinn in District 2, Dan Giallombardo in District 3,
  • Mary Margaret Maule in District 4,
  • Chris Emmerich in District 5, and
  • Robert Ludwig in District 6.

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The head shot on the left is of outgoing party chair Tom Cynor. The new party secretary, Patrick Murfin, can be seen on the left wearing an Obama button.

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