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Brookfield’s PEP Party continued to dominate the local political scene, sweeping every contested village board seat for the fourth straight election. Topping their nearest VIP Party foe by more than 500 votes, PEP maintained its stranglehold on the village board as Kit Ketchmark, Ryan Evans and incumbent C.P. Hall all cruised to victories.

With 16 of 17 precincts reporting at 9:15 p.m., Ketchmark and Evans were the top two vote-getters with 21 percent of the vote apiece. Hall finished third with 20 percent.

“I’m excited by the election result, certainly,” said Ketchmark, who returns to the village board after a two-year absence. He served two terms on the village board from 2001 to 2009. He didn’t run in 2009 because of term limits in Brookfield.

“As a party, we’ve gone and tried to put the best candidates out there and they’ve chosen us in the last four elections,” Ketchmark said. “Ryan is going to help the board out tremendously.”

Evans, who will be a newcomer to the village board, said he was “ecstatic” about the victory.

“I think people want us to continue the work we’ve been doing,” Evans said. “They picked us six years ago, because they wanted change and to keep the real political end out of Brookfield.”

The top finisher for VIP was Wil Brennan, who won 14 percent, followed by Bill Russ and Douglas Tremper, who each finished with about 12 percent of the vote.

For both Brennan and Russ, it’s the fifth straight election they have lost. Russ lost in 2005 when he ran for re-election as village president against Michael Garvey. He followed that with losses for trustee in 2007 and clerk in 2009. In February 2010 he lost a primary bid to be placed on the Democratic ballot as a candidate for Cook County Commissioner of the 16th District.

But even facing another defeat, Russ was defiant.

“I will run again,” Russ said. “There are going to be a lot of new people running with VIP in the next election.”

He also pinned part of PEP’s victory on that party’s successful ballot challenge against three independent candidates. All three were tossed off the ballot.

“If they would’ve left the independents in the race, they would’ve lost,” Russ said. “It would’ve been close and it would’ve hurt them bad.”

Ketchmark dismissed that claim, saying the vote totals showed PEP simply dominated the field.

“I don’t think that would’ve made a difference,” Ketchmark said. “We are up by 600 and 700 votes.”

Brennan lost races for trustee in 2005 and 2007. He lost a bid for village president in 2009 and fell short in a race for Riverside Township Democratic Committeeman in 2010. After that loss, Brennan said he was through with politics, but decided to run alongside his longtime political ally, Russ, this year.

Asked for a statement Tuesday night, Brennan’s response was simply, “No comment.”

DeSantis, Demopoulos stun in N. Riverside

While in Brookfield there were few surprises, two upstart independent trustee candidates, Rocco DeSantis and H. Bob Demopoulos, stunned their VIP Party opponents and broke the party’s complete dominance on the village board for the past two decades.

“It was amazing,” said Demopoulos, who lost a bid for village president two years ago. “We talked to the residents and offered solutions to their problems. They are sick of VIP and they voted their conscience.”

With all five precincts reporting, DeSantis was the top vote-getter with 886 votes, or 22 percent of the total. His nearest competitor, incumbent Randy Czajka, was re-elected with 667 votes. Demopoulos edged out incumbent Gary Wittbrodt by a mere 17 votes – 659 to 642.

Independent George Georgopoulos finished fifth with 594 votes. Incumbent James Votava, a member of the village board almost continuously since the late 1970s, finished sixth with 543 votes.