WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Leadership Change for McDonough County Board

Dec 7, 2018

Those elected to the McDonough County Board last month were sworn into office this week.   Afterward, the board held an organizational meeting and chose a new chairperson, Republican George Dixon of Colchester.

“I had a contingent of board members who asked me if I would run. And I agreed to do that,” said Dixon. “I think there are some policies in place that we can improve on.”

He said he wants to see a broader management scope and more people involved in making decisions.

“This is not a one-man program. It’s got to be run by the whole group. I have a lot of faith in the people that we’ve got that will fill in as committee chairs, and they will be major decision-makers as well,” he said.

George Dixon

Dixon replaces fellow Republican Scott Schwerer of Blandinsville, who served as the board’s chairperson for around the past decade.  Majority Republicans on the board agreed to make the change during a party caucus held before the county board meeting. 

The full county board voted unanimously in favor of the change.  Board members also agreed unanimously to have Republican Mike Cox of Macomb serve as vice chairperson.  He replaced Republican Larry Aurelio of Macomb.

Schwerer and Aurelio remain on the board.

Dixon, who has served on the board for seven years, said Schwerer did an excellent job during his time as chairperson.

“This was not a situation of me against him.  We work together well and I have a tremendous respect for him,” said Dixon.

McDonough County board members sworn in this week:

District 1: Democrat Lee Calvert, Republican Larry Aurelio, Democrat Michael Kirby.

District 2: Republican David Cortelyou, Republican Travis Hiel, Republican Trevor Toland, Republican Joe Erlandson.

District 3: Republican Terra Litchfield, Republican Marcia Twaddle, Republican George Dixon.

Two others who won election in November – Democrat Tessa Pfafman and Democrat Jennifer Hemingway – no longer live in the county.  Dixon will make appointments to fill those seats.  The Pfafman term is for four years and the Hemingway term is for two years. Both seats are in District 1.