Judy Baar Topinka, State Comptroller Passes Away
Judy Baar Topinka passed away at the age of 70 on Wednesday, December 10. The incumbent State Comptroller had just been reelected by popular vote to serve a second term in office; she would have taken her oath of office alongside Governor-elect Bruce Rauner on Monday, January 12.
First elected to statewide office in 1994 as the state Treasurer, Topinka temporarily stepped down in 2006 following an unsuccessful run for Governor. The veteran executive then again sought statewide office in 2010 as state Comptroller, easily winning election to a four-year term in a new office.
I had the opportunity to work in her Treasurer’s office over a college summer years ago, and I was able to see firsthand her passion for the State of Illinois and for doing the right thing. As a legislator, I appreciated working with her and respected her common sense, straight forward approach. She was one of a kind and will be missed.
Attorney General Lisa Madigan was asked to render an opinion on the issue of who should fill the position of State Comptroller after January 12, 2015. She concluded the authority to fill the vacant office for the new Comptroller term should be transferred to Governor-elect Bruce Rauner; however, she highly encourages a special election for the position in 2016. To read more click here.