SPRING VALLEY — Spring Valley resident Debra Baltikauski was appointed and sworn in to the Third Ward alderwoman position at this week’s council meeting.
Baltikauski has replaced the late alderman Mark Actis, who passed away in March.
Spring Valley Mayor Walt Marini first announced his selection of Baltikauski at the April 14 council meeting. At that time, he said the council — which was made up of seven men — could use the perspective of a woman.
Earlier this week, Marini talked a little more about how he came to select Baltikauski.
“I’ve known her and her family for a number of years, and she’s a friend. I knew she would be a good person to have represent the Third Ward,” he said.
Marini admitted when he first approached Baltikauski about the idea, she had to think on it for a couple days but eventually agreed to take on the challenge.
“She told me she’s already written a list of questions she wants to sit down and talk to me about,” Marini said, pointing out she’s already active in the position.
When taking about the strengths she will bring to the council, Marini said he respects how she’s not afraid to speak her mind. When deciding who to select to represent the Third Ward, he knew right away he didn’t want someone who would sit and not speak up about issues.
Even with a council made up of seven other men, Marini is certain that Baltikauski will not feel intimidated.
Looking back at the history of the Spring Valley Council, the last women seated was Pam Argubright 13 years ago. In 2001 she decided not to rerun for her position.
Baltikauski will fill the position of Third Ward alderwomen until the next election in April 2015. She will then have to run in the election if she wishes to keep her seat on the council.
The Bureau County Republican attempted to contact Baltikauski; she could not be reached before deadline.
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