Maria Maxham embraces a supporter | By Igor Studenkov/Staff Reporter

All three incumbent Forest Park commissioners kept their seats, with Michelle Melin-Rogovin emerging as the only commissioner-elect.

With commissioner Joe Byrnes retiring, six candidates competed for four seats. With all precincts reporting Tuesday evening, the preliminary results show incumbent Jessica Voogd earning the highest vote share with 20.64%. Maria Maxham, former Review editor who was appointed in July 2021, took second place in her first-ever election, earning 20.45% of the vote. Fellow incumbent Ryan Nero came in third, earning 18.54% of the vote, while Melin-Rogovin came in fourth, earning 16.16% of the vote.

Ryan Russ, the former superintendent of parks at the Park District of Forest Park, who previously ran for village commissioner in 2019, came in a close fifth, earning 14.37% of the vote. Real estate agent Joe Landgrebe came in last, earning 9.84%.

While there were no formal slates this time around, Melin-Rogovin, Maxham and Landgrebe supported each other. All candidates except Russ were endorsed by Forest Park Firefighters Local 2753, the labor union presenting village firefighters.

The Review ran into Melin-Rogovin as she was leaving her election night party at Brown Cow ice cream parlor, 7347 Madison St., and heading toward Shanahan’s bar, 7354 Madison St., where incumbent mayor Rory Hoskins was having his election party and where Maxham camped out. Being stopped in the middle of the street didn’t break her stride.

“I’m very happy,” she said. “I’m very honored and just… I’m very excited to be serving the village and very excited to start and get to work. I don’t… I’m still absorbing all of this. It’s an honor.”

Maxham approached Melin-Rogovin to hug and congratulate her part-way through the interview. When the Review caught up with her inside Shanahan’s, Maxham said she didn’t expect to get as many votes as she did – and that she, too, was still processing winning an election.

“I’m overwhelmed and thrilled,” Maxham said. “I’m so thankful to my family and the residents of Forest Park for putting their trust in me. I’m so happy. It’s a huge, huge honor.”

When reached by phone, Russ declined to comment “at this time.” The Review was unable to reach Nero, Voogd and Landgrebe at press time.