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Sue Bielenda chosen as 2014 Lombard Woman of the Year
by Bonnie MacKay                                        
Thinking that she was accompanying several of the Lilac princesses to be introduced at the monthly meeting of the Lombard Service League last week, it was a big surprise for Sue Bielenda to find out that it was a little bit more involved than that.
On Thursday, April 10, the Lombard Service League named Sue Bielenda as the 2014 Woman of the Year.
She was with the Lilac princesses because once again, Bielenda is serving as the co-chair of the Lilac Queen Contest, which is sponsored by the Lombard Junior Women’s Club.
Bielenda, a 50-year resident of the Lilac Village, began volunteering at the Cooperative Nursery School at the First Church of Lombard when her children were young. Eventually Bielenda became a teacher at the school and today serves as the director of the school.
As a member of the Lombard Junior Women’s Club, Bielenda has held almost every office in the club, including being president a couple of times.
Instrumental in starting the club’s TLC Camp, she has served as director of the the camp and continues to work at the camp every year.
Bielenda won Outstanding Junior of the Year multiple times, as well as the club’s service award. She has served the GFWC Illinois Junior Organization as secretary and was recently installed as the Illinois GFWC 5th District president.
“Whether it be hosting a meeting, chairing a committee or selling tickets to a fundraiser, she is always there to help,” her nomination letter read. “She has a caring and giving heart and the word ‘no’ is not in her vocabulary. She is a valuable asset to Lombard and is incredibly worthy to receive the honor of Lombard Woman of the Year.”

‘Welcome Home Veterans Program’ honors veterans
The Village of Lombard’s Community Relations Committee recently initiated a “Welcome Home Veterans Program,” as a way for the village to honor Lombard residents returning home from serving the country.    
Village of Lombard Trustee Dan Whittington, chairman of the committee, said the idea stemmed from an instance this winter when a family friend was returning home from service in Afghanistan. Whittington worked with the Lombard Police and Fire departments to honor the returning veteran at his Lombard home and wanted to make sure all residents who knew of someone who had finished service could do the same.
“These men and women sacrifice so much for our country,” Whittington said. “They deserve a proper welcome. In Lombard, we want to show them we appreciate their service and are happy and honored to have them home.”
Lombard Police Sgt. William  Marks has been the leader of similar welcome home processions in Lombard throughout the years, but said he is happy to work with the village on formalizing the process.
Through the new program, residents who know of a returning veteran can go to the village’s home page and click “Welcome Home Veterans” in the center navigation form to fill out a form. The form includes the name of the returning man or woman, a brief biography, details about their service and where and when the requested welcome home will take place. Requesters will receive a response within 72 hours of submission from the designated contact at the village hall.
From there, Marks and the Community Relations Committee will coordinate with police, fire, elected officials and the local VFW Lilac Post 5815 to make sure the village provides a warm welcome home.
Anyone with questions can e-mail communications@villageoflombard.org or call 630-620-5718. Anyone with questions regarding the program or application process can contact Communications Coordinator Bridget Doyle at 630-620-5718 or doyleb@villageoflombard.org.

Annual Pride Week scheduled for May 4-10
Lombard’s annual Pride Week is set for May 4-10, with the annual clean-up day scheduled for May 10.
The annual Pride Week is traditionally held the week before Lilac Time to encourage residents to take pride in their community and to initiate spring cleaning to have Lombard looking its best for the many visitors of Lilac Time.
This year, in addition to the annual clean-up around the village and the Illinois Prairie Path and Great Western Trail, removal efforts to stop pesky plants from choking our native plants will also be offered to volunteers.
Public Works is organizing a hands-on effort to clean up and clear out buckthorn, honeysuckle, Japanese knotwood, beautybush and others along the 5 miles of bike trails.
To volunteer for the clean-up effort, contact Dave Gorman, assistant director of public works, at 630-620-5740.

Avoid distracted driving; texting is illegal in Illinois
Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White is reminding people to travel safely and avoid driving while distracted as April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month. 
“As the weather warms and travel increases, I encourage everyone to put away their cell phones while they are behind the wheel and focus completely on the task at hand: driving safely,” said White. “Studies show that distracted driving contributes significantly to otherwise preventable fatal crashes.” 
A recent study commissioned by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that was conducted by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute found that the use of handheld cell phones increases the risk of a crash by three times. According to U.S. Department of Transportation, in 2012 over 3,300 people were killed in crashes involving distracted driving.
Texting while driving is perhaps the most dangerous form of distracted driving. According to the NHTSA, driving while texting is six times more dangerous than driving while drunk and texting drivers are 23 times more likely to be involved in a crash than drivers not texting.
Illinois has been a national leader in efforts to combat distracted driving.  White chaired the state’s Distracted Driving Task Force, which led to the state’s ban on texting while driving in 2010.  Over 5,000 people have been convicted of texting while driving since that law took effect Jan 1, 2010.
On Jan. 1, 2014, the new state law banning handheld cell phones while driving took effect.  In the law’s first three months, more than 2,800 drivers having been convicted for texting, talking or dialing on a handheld cell phone.

Dr. Weselak earns certification
Doctor Timothy C. Weselak of Lombard earned the prestigious status of Certified Chiropractic Wellness Lifestyle Practitioner (C.C.W.P.), one of a select group of doctors of chiropractic to successfully complete this comprehensive postgraduate educational program.
Weselak was awarded the C.C.W.P. status by the International Chiropractors Association’s Council on Wellness Lifestyle Science on Dec. 23, 2013, having successfully passed a comprehensive final examination following completion of the program’s course work and other requirements.
The wellness certification program offers an extensive post-graduate curriculum of pertinent wellness lifestyle science and clinical research, patient care approaches and methods to maximize the clinical effectiveness of chiropractic care in the wellness paradigm. The program includes evidence-based information in nutrition and natural health, wellness-directed physical fitness and spinal hygiene, and state of mind and emotional health, as well as effective insights for generating and supporting wellness lifestyle changes.
Doctors also learn advanced approaches to patient wellness assessment, clinical case management strategies for optimal wellness, and recent research findings on clinically relevant lifestyle choices.
“The C.C.W.P. Certification gives practitioners practical research and science-based data in a growing field that is increasingly relevant because it addresses important health issues in a context where chiropractors already do excel,” said ICA President Michael S. McLean, D.C. “Those who complete the curriculum build an intensified understanding of the founding philosophic and scientific principles of chiropractic. They are also uniquely equipped to fill an important lifestyle and public health gap in their communities by becoming a sound, authoritative source of evidence-based wellness lifestyle choices and living strategies.”
The multi-faceted C.C.W.P. seminar program is offered at multiple locations through the International Chiropractors Association (ICA) (visit www.chiropractic.org/wellness/ for program details). The ICA works in partnership with Life Chiropractic College West in Hayward, Calif., an internationally acclaimed chiropractic college, to cosponsor the postgraduate educational program. Faculty members include program developer James L. Chestnut, B.Ed., MSc., D.C., C.C.W.P.; and Richard A. Baxter, B.Eng., D.C., C.C.W.P., both highly acclaimed for their grasp of the subject matter and understanding of its clinical applications and relevance.
“This Certified Chiropractic Wellness Lifestyle Practitioner credential recognizes Dr. Weselak’s accomplishments in successfully completing the demanding course work and examination process for this special credential designation,” noted Chestnut, who developed the certification program curriculum. “The integral connection between wellness science and the natural and powerful contribution chiropractic care can make to the life and health of every patient are powerful mechanisms for the enhancement of the quality of life for all individuals.”
Weselak, D.C., C.C.W.P., is a 2000 graduate of the National University of Health Sciences in Lombard. Weselak, an active member of the International Chiropractors Association’s Wellness Lifestyle Science Council, currently practices at 1127 S. Main St. in Lombard.

District 44 schedules its kindergarten orientations
This spring, Lombard District 44 schools will host kindergarten orientation sessions. Parents and their kindergarten student are asked to attend orientation at their child’s school so that they have an opportunity to meet other parents and become acquainted with the school and the kindergarten teacher.
• Butterfield, Wednesday, April 23, 6:30 p.m., 630-827-4000
• Hammerschmidt, Thursday, April 17, 6:30 p.m., 630-827-4200
• Madison, Thursday, May 1, 6:30 p.m., 630-827-4100
• Manor Hill, Thursday, April 24, 6:30 p.m., 630-827-4300
• Park View, Thursday, April 24, 6:45 p.m., 630-827-4040
• Pleasant Lane, Thursday, April 17, 6:30 p.m., 630-827-4640
Topics to be discussed include information on the program; preparing a child for school; a typical day in kindergarten; ways to ensure that a child’s separation from home and adjustment to school is a happy, positive experience; health; and speech and language. 
For further information about kindergarten orientation contact your home school between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. weekdays.

Glenbard schools make Washington Post list
All four Glenbard high schools once again have been named to the Washington Post’s list of America’s Most Challenging High Schools, and each of their national rankings improved.
Fewer than 10 percent of high schools nationally make the list. The list ranks schools through an index formula that uses the following ratio: the number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and Advanced International Certificate of Education tests given at a school each year, divided by the number of seniors who graduated in May or June of that year.
In releasing the list, the Washington Post also notes the percentage of students who come from families who qualify for lunch subsidies and the percentage of graduates who passed at least one college-level test during their high school career, called equity and excellence.
Superintendent David Larson said, “We are very proud of our students for challenging themselves and leveling up to take at least one Advanced Placement class in an area of interest. Our board of education, administrators, faculty and staff have committed to the goal of increasing the number of students who take at least one AP class in order to experience college-level work and passing the AP exam.”
Each of Glenbard’s high schools had its highest number of AP tests per students ever.
Out of approximately 682 public high schools and 146 nonpublic high schools in Illinois, 65 Illinois high schools were named to the Washington Post’s list. The following is where Glenbard high schools appear in the 2014 Illinois ranking of high schools on the Washington Post’s list:
• Glenbard West, No. 8
• Glenbard South, No. 24
• Glenbard North, No. 43
• Glenbard East, No. 47

DNA evidence links Villa Park man to restaurant burglary
On Feb. 20, 2013, at approximately 7:49 a.m. a Villa Park police officer on patrol noticed a broken window at the Montecasino Restaurant, located at 401 N. Ardmore Ave. in Villa Park.
The officer investigated further and confirmed that a burglary occurred and the cash register was missing from the business. Investigating officers located the missing cash register in the rear parking lot of the business.
Officers recovered DNA evidence at the scene which later identified the suspect as Victor Vega and an arrest warrant was issued.
“A number of items were processed and one came back,” said Villa Park Police Detective Sgt. Dan McCann.
On April 8, at approximately 3:40 p.m., Villa Park officers located Victor Vega riding a bicycle in the area of the Villa Park train station.
Although Vega fled from officers after being ordered to stop, he was pursued to the area of Villa and Manor, where he was eventually taken into custody without incident.  
Victor Vega, 20, of Villa Park was charged with burglary, a Class 2 felony; obstructing a peace officer, a Class A misdemeanor; and trespass to railroad property, a Class C misdemeanor
Vega was transported to the DuPage County Jail, where as of press time, he was being held in lieu of $5,000 bond.

VP teen charged with residential burglary
A call from an alert neighbor resulted in the apprehension of a Villa Park teen on burglary charges last week.
At about 12:41 p.m., on April 8, a resident notified police after observing a suspicious person reportedly entering a house through a basement window at a residence located on the 100 block of East Congress in Villa Park.
Officers arrived on the scene and located the subject inside the residence. It was determined that the subject did not reside at the residence and he was taken into custody.
According to a department press release, officers found the subject in possession of jewelry, which belonged to the homeowner.
   Police charged Joseph Grumbos, 19, of Villa Park, with residential burglary, a Class 1 felony. He was transported to the DuPage County Jail in Wheaton, where as of press time he was being held in lieu of $100,000 bond.