Good news


DuPage County Board member Kari Galassi and former board member Greg Hart, both of Hinsdale, teamed up to host the first annual Bank Your Vote Gala Feb. 9 in Rosemont. The event brought together 750 Illinoisans and raised almost $500,000 that will be used to encourage residents to vote early or by mail in the 2024 elections.

“We brought residents from around the state together for one of the largest gatherings of the Illinois Republican Party in recent memory,” Galassi said Kari. “Hundreds of attendees have never donated to the state party and even more had never attended a Republican party event before. Republicans are energized, growing and ready to turn Illinois around in 2024.”

Republicans need to establish early and mail-in voting as viable options, Hart said.

“We need more people participating in our democratic process, not fewer. To compete and win, it is critical that Republicans push back against the false narrative that early and mail-in voting are not acceptable options,” he said.

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The Hinsdale Assembly has announced that the 2023 class of Debutantes and Honor Guards raised $65,000 for the much-needed renovation of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at UChicago Medicine AdventHealth Hinsdale Hospital, bringing the Assembly’s total fundraising amount dedicated to the NICU to $215,000.

Additionally, the Hinsdale Assembly is proud to name the 2024 Class of Debutantes and Honor Guards. These young women and men have begun their yearly philanthropy commitment, accomplished through participation at a number of community service projects at organizations including The Wellness House, Bethlehem Woods Retirement Community, HCS Family Services and more. Their year of service will culminate with the Hinsdale Assembly Ball on Dec. 23 at the Hilton Oak Brook Hills Resort.

“Service has been the Hinsdale Assembly’s hallmark during its 61 years of existence,” said Emily Van Houtte, Hinsdale Assembly chair. “This dedicated group of debutantes and honor guards will continue and expand on this wonderful tradition.”

The 2024 Hinsdale Assembly class is embarking on its third year of the Assembly’s five-year commitment to raise funds for the NICU, which has not been renovated in more than 20 years.

The members of the 2024 Hinsdale Assembly class are as follows.

2024 Debutantes

• Brynn Catherine Bauer, daughter of Deanne and Gregory Bauer

• Amelia Kate Fitzgerald, daughter of Dr. Julie and Richard Fitzgerald

• Hope Elizabeth Huizenga, daughter of Abigail and Peter Huizenga

• Alexis Frances Isenhart, daughter of Natasha Isenhart

• Surina Iyengar, daughter of Drs. Neha and Vivek Iyengar

• Elisa Conti Julian, daughter of Jenna and Kenneth Julian

• Audrey Caroline Kisluk, daughter of Debra and Peter Kisluk

• Elizabeth Peyton Lahmann, daughter of Janeline and Dr. Brian Lahmann

• Katelyn Elizabeth Scott, daughter of Tracy and Jeffrey Scott

• Ella Grace Simmons, daughter of Corlyn and Jeffrey Simmons

• Claire Elizabeth Witte, daughter of Mary and Christopher Witte

2024 Honor Guards

• Sebastian Bishoy Aziz, son of Drs. Nermeen and George Aziz

• Evan Joseph Bots, son of Karen and Theodore Bots

• Nicholas Joseph Calandra, son of Dr. Megan Dwyer and Dr. Carl Calandra

• Nathaniel James Curran, son of Dr. Joanne Labriola Curran and James Curran

• Cuyler Francis Facchini, son of Margaret and Dr. Francis Facchini

• Colin Alexander Geier, son of Stephanie and Paul Geier

• Jacob Matthew Gupta, son of Jacqueline and Mark Gupta

• Aidan Daniel Hernandez, son of Therese and Jose Hernandez

• Peter Fox Hester, son of Heather and John Hester

• Xavier Rajeev Jashnani, son of Heather and Rajeev Jashnani

• Ethan James Lobraco, son of Jennifer and James Lobraco

• Andrew Olsson Lundgren, son of Lisa and Kurt Lundgren

• Charles Vincent Lynch, son of Jacqueline and Joseph Lynch

• Franco Mikel Monroy, son of Carolina and Frank Monroy

• James Terrance Melkus, son of Tonya and Paul Melkus

• Joseph Alexander Morrissey, son of Melanie and Francis Morrissey

• Oliver Jerrard Sackett Pohlenz, son of Jennifer Sackett Pohlenz and the late Julius Pohlenz

• Peter Mantei Smith, son of Ellen and Justin Smith

• Jack Nicholas Walsh, son of Lauren and John Walsh

• Emmet Robert Widtfeldt, son of Amanda Scott Widtfeldt

• Benjamin Roy Wittemann, son of Carol and Christopher Wittemann


Patrick Dugan, a student at Hinsdale Central High School, has been awarded a 2024 national Student Fellowship from the Bill of Rights Institute.

Dugan was selected for the elite program from a nationwide pool of applicants, and will become part of a 2024 cohort that includes 25 students from 15 states.

As a Bill of Rights Institute Student Fellow, Dugan will participate in a six-month educational program and capstone educational trips to Philadelphia and Washington, D.C.