The Democratic-leaning Rock Island County Board re-elected Ken “Moose” Maranda on Monday as its chairman for the next two years.
Maranda, D-Milan, won in a 17-8 vote over Drue Mielke, R-Coal Valley, during the board's organizational meeting, which saw 13 members sworn in following the November elections and a recent appointment.
All eight of the board's Republicans voted for Mielke, an incumbent board member who beat out Democratic challenger Ryan Shoemaker of Coal Valley in last month's District 22 race.
The board also welcomed four new faces, including Scott Noyd, D-Silvis, who was appointed to fill the vacant District 3 seat.
Noyd will replace Michael Burns, D-Silvis, whose term was not set to expire until November 2018. Following the meeting, Burns said by telephone that he resigned last month because of health issues.
Nick Camlin, D-Rock Island, was re-elected the board's vice chair, winning 17-8 over Robert Westpfahl, R-Milan, who was nominated for the two-year position.
In other changes, Kai Swanson, D-Rock Island, was elected president of the Rock Island County Forest Preserve Commission, winning 15-8 over Rodney Simmer, R-Rock Island. Don Johnston, D-Moline, left the meeting before the vote, and Kimberly Calloway Thompson, who called for the vote, abstained.
Swanson will replace longtime county board member and former commission president Steve Ballard, who did not seek re-election.
Swanson, an administrator at Augustana College in Rock Island, will lead the commission, which is made up of the 25-member County Board and oversees Niabi Zoo and county parks, for two years.
Other new members include Richard Morthland, R-Cordova, Robert Reagan, R-Moline, and Cecilia O'Brien, D-Moline.
As chairman, which is considered a part-time position, Maranda will receive $22,000 a year.
"It's an honor to serve," Maranda said after the meeting. "I'll try to continue doing what's best for the people of Rock Island County."