Boone County’s Pat Elder recognized on her retirement after 24 years of service
By Bob Balgemann
Longtime Boone County Supervisor of Assessments Pat Elder has been wished a fond farewell from public service as she retires.
She was recognized during the Wednesday, Feb. 15 county board meeting when members unanimously adopted a resolution in her honor.
The resolution stated she performed her duties in an outstanding manner. During her 24 years in office, she worked with the nine townships, the board of review, and the general public on assessment-related matters.
While she didn’t say anything, Boone County Board Chairman Karl Johnson, County Administrator Ken Terrinoni, and County Treasurer Curt Newport were among those who offered words of gratitude and praise for Elder’s accomplishments.
Terrinoni spoke of her integrity and her insistence on doing what was right, even when it was not popular.
Chairman Johnson thanked her for her efforts to improve the service of the County Assessment Office while holding the line on operating costs.
Newport remembered how she came here from Western Illinois and “faced quite a task. The first thing she discovered was that some of the townships were under-assessed. So, she had to correct that. Some assessors and residents were none too pleased, but she did her job.”
Not long after that, he said she found the Chrysler plant was dramatically over-assessed. So, she lowered the value significantly.
“Certain people on the [District 100] school board and other taxing districts were not pleased with that,” he remembered. Some publicly questioned her competence, which was unfair. But, this is a business where you need a thick skin and a calm, confident demeanor, which she’s always had.”
Additionally, he said she brought a lot of improvements to the office. She has put on tax clinics over the years, and she earned the respect of township assessors, who nominated her for the prestigious award that she received in 2016 from the Illinois Property Assessors Institute.
The state-wide award was created in 2000 and is given out each year to those who have demonstrated professionalism and dedication to others.
Then-county board Chairman Bob Walberg recognized Elder at the March 16, 2016, meeting. The honor brought with it a scholarship, a plaque, and a hearty round of applause.
“When I became treasurer in 2008, she was a mentor and a trusted friend,” Newport said. “She helped me fool people into believing I knew what I was doing. She has been a great asset to Boone County, and I’m going to miss her.”