Barbara Minneci is sworn in as a commissioner on the township mental health commission by Lyons Township Clerk Elyse Hoffenberg. (Photo by Steve Metsch)

Barbara Minneci is sworn in as a commissioner on the township mental health commission by Lyons Township Clerk Elyse Hoffenberg. (Photo by Steve Metsch)

Minneci joins Lyons Township Mental Health Commission 

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By Steve Metsch 

Barbara Minneci is very familiar with the Lyons Township Mental Health Commission, so she should fit in comfortably.

After having worked eight years as an assistant to the commission’s executive director Ron Melka, Minneci is now a member of the nine-person commission.

Minneci, a Willow Springs resident, was sworn in by Township Clerk Elyse Hoffenberg when the township board met June 13.

“I want to do my best to bring it to a new level,” Minneci said after the meeting.

“Between working with my commissioners, the agencies, (township staff) and Ron, I think we can do a great job here,” she said.

“There certainly is a need. We’ve got to get the word out that mental health here in Lyons (Township) is ready to do our job,” she added.

Minneci had worked as a coordinator in the Chicago Public Schools for 25 years.

Melka thinks Minneci will make an immediate positive impact: “She’s wonderful, an excellent person to work with, very much a go-getter.”

During the meeting, Township Supervisor Christopher Getty spoke highly of Minneci.

“She is a person who knows the ins and outs of every capacity of the mental health commission,” Getty said. “She was an exceptional employee while she was here with us and is a dedicated township resident. The fact that she wants to continue to serve in a volunteer capacity, we appreciate her very much for that.”

The board unanimously approved Minneci becoming a commissioner.

In other business, the board unanimously approved:

  • a $300 donation to the Justice Public Library for its summer reading program.
  • $400 to sponsor a beverage cart in the UCP Seguin Foundation Burke Beverage Golf Outing on Aug. 21 at the La Grange Country Club.
  • a $750 grant to the Lyons Mustangs Athletic Club to help fund its operations.
  • a $1,000 community partner sponsorship with the La Grange Highlands Civic Association.
  • a $1,500 sponsorship to the Windy City Blues Society which is partnering with the village of Willow Springs for the Chicago Blues Challenge on July 29.

A paper shredding event was well attended on May 20, Hoffenberg said. Eighty residents brought in 2,860 pounds of paper for shredding, she said. Native plant sales on May 13 and June 11 were also popular, she said.

Fifty-one high school and college students have signed up for the township’s summer jobs program, Trustee Donna McDonald said.

The township also received a good review in an audit presentation by David Jelonek of Hillside-based G.W & Associates.

“Revenues exceeded expenditures, so there was no spending against reserves from the previous year,” he said. “The main operating fund spent under budget. … It was a clean audit and no issues.”

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