A 2007 Cub Scout meeting caused me to miss Springfield politician-developer Bill Cellini’s appearance before the Crystal Lake City Council the day it awarded the contract for the development of the Vulcan Lakes TIF District.
It wasn’t until a Northwest Herald reporter put it together in late November, I think, that I found out.
Having worked under the direction of Cellini is the 1971 Springfield mayoral campaign of Denny Kelley, I certainly would have recognized him at that city council meeting when he and had colleagues got the go-ahead to re-make Route 14 adjacent to what is now called Three Oaks Recreation Area.
Shortly after Cellini was identified by Chicago media as one of the unidentified people in Tony Rezko’s indictment, Cellini withdrew from the Crystal Lake deal.
That was done for political damage control reasons.
Certainly, Cellini is a smart enough guy to have provided value to the so-far failed efforts to re-develop Route 14.
Besides have gotten to know Bill and his delightful wife Julie back in 1971 when they still lived in a bottom floor condo on what was then a two-lane road which is not a major four-lane Springfield street, I am reminded of him pretty much every time I stay in a hotel or a motel.
He invested the curved shower curtain rod, which was first installed at the Springfield hotel on which he and fellow investors got quite a deal from state government under Governor Jim Thompson and Treasurer Jerry Cosentino. (So did former Dan Walker IDOT Rest Stop Inspector Gary Fears in Collinsville.)
His or probably knocked off curved curtain rods are now the industry standard.
More of my memories of Cellini can be found here.