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Local News

Joliet mayor to make Rialto appointment Tuesday

The Rialto Square Theatre
The Rialto Square Theatre

JOLIET – Mary Beth Gannon said she does not expect to be named to the Rialto Square Theatre board when the mayor announces his appointment Tuesday.

Mayor Thomas Giarrante wasn't saying Friday who he will appoint. But Gannon said she did not get a good feeling from her interview on Tuesday.

"I blew him away with my ideas," Gannon said of her interview. "I gave him sheet after sheet of ideas on how to make the Rialto money and what I would do if I was on the board."

Gannon has been a leader in the "Rialto Belongs to the People" Facebook group that opposed a Rialto marquee replacement funded by a $350,000 donation from benefactor Ed Czerkies, until he pulled back his money.

The group has sought a bigger say on Rialto matters and has two members on a newly formed Rialto marquee committee. Gannon is one of them.

Gannon has campaigned to be appointed to an open seat on the Will County Metropolitan Exposition and Auditorium Authority, which oversees the Rialto. Giarrante said he will name an appointment Tuesday.

"I told him, 'I hope you give me a fair chance,'" Gannon said of her interview with the mayor. She said the mayor's reply was, 'You will be given the consideration you deserve.'"

Giarrante said Friday he received 12 applications, and one of the applicants pulled out. He had interviewed 10 of the 11 candidates as of Friday afternoon.

He declined to comment about Gannon or any of the applicants.

The only applicant publicly known is Gannon, who has campaigned for the position. Gannon objected when the mayor was going to appoint someone else to the Rialto board. When the two previous candidates being considered by the mayor withdrew, Giarrante said he would open up the appointment to applicants.

Giarrante said he will release the names of applicants who gave the OK for their names to be made public, but not others.

"Those who have no problems with their names being released, their names will be released," he said.

Gannon has signed up to speak at Tuesday's City Council meeting. She did that because she does not expect to be appointed, she said.

"The way he said, 'I'll give you the consideration you deserve,' I think was a back-handed compliment," Gannon said.

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