Vox, formerly known as Citizens United in Forest Park, announced in a July 22 Facebook post that the community group was disbanding after 13 years of local activism.
Steve Backman, one of the group’s board members and the post’s author, would not go on the record answering any questions, including why the group decided to shutter, when reached by phone July 28.
“…Many say Vox introduced the practice of active citizenry to our village,” Backman wrote in the Facebook post. “So at this milestone, Vox is formally announcing the end of the organization, a decision we discussed at last year”s general meeting.
The post quickly received at least a dozen likes and several comments.
“Thank you to your amazing commitment to democracy!!!” Forest Parker and Proviso Township High Schools Board of Education member Claudia Medina wrote. “We are all better, growing and committed to our town, with transparency and progressive initiatives thanks to all the work you have done. We are so grateful for your inspiration for future endeavors!! You live in our towns heart beat!”
“I remember when video of public meetings was cutting edge – thanks to Vox, it is now standard practice,” Ken Snyder wrote. “Thanks for all the work that Vox has done!”
Backman, in the July 22 post, highlighted some of the group’s efforts since its inception in spring 2004, including voter registration, candidate forums and fundraisers.
In a February 2014 opinion piece in the Forest Park Review Backman wrote “Vox is already getting its stuff together for the next 10 years and the outlook is bright.”
As reported by the Review at the time, in 2005, the Elmhurst-based Citizens Advocacy Center (CAC) gave the group, then known as Citizens United in Forest Park, a citizen’s initiative award.
“What we do gets us labeled as crackpots or wise guys,” Backman said at the time. “It was nice to get recognized by like-minded people all fighting the same struggle in different towns.”