McHenry may need Lake County’s assistance after coroner retires

By Gregory Harutunian For Chronicle Media

McHenry County Coroner Dr. Anne Majewski. (Photo courtesy of McHenry County government)

McHenry County Coroner Dr. Anne Majewski will retire from her post of nearly seven years on March 23 to concentrate on health issues involving cancer treatment.

Her term was set to expire in 2020, and a notification letter was forwarded to the McHenry County Board Feb. 21.

County board chairman Jack Franks has the statutory power to appoint a replacement, which must also be approved by the full board membership. While the position does not require a medical degree, options for sharing services with neighboring counties as a cost-effective expense measure is also on the table. In the meantime, talk of contracting or merging for services with the Lake County Coroner’s Office has surfaced.

“I’ve heard the rumors about that and although I have not officially been contacted, I will always listen to people, who call me,” said Lake County Coroner Dr. Howard Cooper. “They are discussing it, and when someone approaches me about it, I will address it at that time.”

The McHenry County Communications Specialist’s Office did not return requests for comment. When contacted, Dr. Majewski concurred that Franks will name her replacement and the matter is out of her control. She also would not comment further, beyond her notification letter.

Lake County coroner Dr. Howard Cooper. (Photo courtesy of Lake County government)

It stated, “With a heavy heart, I am submitting my intent to retire from my position as Coroner in order to address ongoing health complications related to my cancer treatment … It has been an honor and privilege to serve the citizens of McHenry County.

“I have been blessed to have witnessed the resilience and hopefulness of families who have lost loved ones, to have worked with dedicated professionals both here at the Government Center and across McHenry County, and to have had the opportunity to meet so many McHenry County citizens, young and old, at presentations and seminars,” she said.


“I shall assist with the changeover, once my successor is chosen, to insure a smooth and seamless transition of leadership.”

The letter was addressed to all the county board members, Franks, and County Administrator Peter Austin.

Dr. Majewski received an undergraduate degree at the University of Notre Dame and subsequently attended the University of Illinois-Chicago Medical School, completing her residency requirements at the Prentice Women’s Hospital, an affiliate of Northwestern Memorial Hospital. Her medical practice in obstetrics-gynecology was at Barrington’s Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital in Barrington, along with a medical consultancy on a private basis.

Dr. Majewski was first elected, running as an unopposed candidate, in the 2012 Republican primary and received the oath of office in December of that year. She was reelected four years later. Her mother is former McHenry County Board member Lou Anne Majewski.

“She’s been great, and a wonderful partner in our fight against the opioid epidemic in our county,” said McHenry County State’s Attorney Patrick Kenneally. “She’s been an exceptional coroner, and will certainly be missed.”

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