Ferry had gone to school with Elaine, from kindergarten through grade eight and was already involved in local politics, Ferry said. He agreed to run, and Bice helped him campaign in a very collaborative ways.
"It was probably not your typical manner because we knew each other so well," Ferry said. "We just put our heads together; it was a mutual agreement; that's what made it work with her.
"She was not somebody to give orders: 'go here, go there, do this, do that,' so it was kind of a joint venture, in that respect...She was just a good-hearted person; a kind-hearted person: 'What can I do to help? What do you think you need me to do?'"
Although Elaine Bice was not Slovenian, in 2011 the Slovenian Women's Union of America (SWUA) I voted her potica the best in the country, Elaine's husband Charlie Bice of Plainfield said.
Elaine owned a business called Elaine’s Specialties, which was – and still is – known for her potica, fine pastries and candies, Charlie said.
Yet when Charlie and Elaine married 47 years ago, Elaine couldn’t even boil an egg, although she tried, he said.
“They just exploded in the kitchen,” Charlie said. “She overdid them. But she became a very good cook and baker as time went on. Her mom was a very good cook, so she took her mother’s recipes and started making them.”
Charlie said his aunt taught Elaine to make potica. Elaine eventually modified that recipe and people really liked her version, he said.
”They wondered how she could make potica so good when she wasn’t even Slovenian,” Charlie said.
Elaine took many orders for her potica and sold many poticas at area craft and vendor shows. she never missed these three events: Christmas Crossroads in Lockport, First Assembly of God in Joliet in Joliet and Grundy County Corn Fest, Charlie said.
Each time, Elaine sold approximately 80 to 200 poticas, Charlie said.
“She also did chocolate covered pretzels, zucchini bread, pumpkin bread, strudels and turnovers. She did all kinds of stuff,” Charlie said.