Muchnik heads for the door after years of solid service - Metropolitan Planning Council

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Muchnik heads for the door after years of solid service

<P DESIGNTIMESP=21399><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21400><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21401>After a long career of serving in 
the South Suburbs, Janet Muchnik is retiring Friday. <?xml:namespace prefix = o 
ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /><o:p designtimesp=21402></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21403><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21404><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21405>Most recently, she has been 
<?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" 
/><st1:place 
style="BACKGROUND-POSITION: left bottom; BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(res://ietag.dll/#34/#1001); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-x" 
tabIndex=0 w:st="on" designtimesp=21406>Park Forest</st1:place> village manager for 10 years. The 
65-year-old <st1:place 
style="BACKGROUND-POSITION: left bottom; BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(res://ietag.dll/#34/#1001); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-x" 
tabIndex=0 w:st="on" designtimesp=21407>Park Forest</st1:place> resident has had a rich history and 
steady career in the region. <o:p designtimesp=21408></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21409><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21410><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21411>Muchnik was elected three times to 
the Park Forest-Chicago Heights District 163 school board, serving six years 
including two years as president; elected to the Park Forest Village Board as a 
trustee serving six years; and was appointed by the U.S. Secretary of the 
Interior upon nomination of Gov. Jim Thompson as a charter member of the 
Illinois and Michigan Canal National Heritage Corridor Commission. 
<o:p designtimesp=21412></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21413><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21414><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21415>She 
has received numerous awards along the way. <o:p designtimesp=21416></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21417><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21418><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21419>A 
reception will be held in Muchnik's honor from 1 to 3 p.m. Friday at village 
hall, <st1:Street w:st="on" designtimesp=21420><st1:address 
style="BACKGROUND-POSITION: left bottom; BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(res://ietag.dll/#34/#1001); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-x" 
tabIndex=0 w:st="on" designtimesp=21421>350 Victory Drive</st1:address></st1:Street>. 
<o:p designtimesp=21422></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21423><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21424><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21425>A 
retirement party slated for Saturday at the Holiday Inn-Matteson will include 
some slides and a few skits. <o:p designtimesp=21426></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21427><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21428><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21429>Muchnik said her first plans after 
retirement include travel. <o:p designtimesp=21430></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21431><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21432><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21433>Upon the recommendation of a friend, 
Muchnik wants to take some time for herself and family before delving into her 
next project. <o:p designtimesp=21434></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21435><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21436><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21437>Because of her good health and high 
energy level, Muchnik plans to give back to the community in which she has lived 
for more than 30 years. <o:p designtimesp=21438></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21439><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21440><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21441>She 
has yet to decide exactly where her niche will be, whether it is volunteering 
for the Tall Grass Arts Association, getting more involved with the <st1:place 
style="BACKGROUND-POSITION: left bottom; BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(res://ietag.dll/#34/#1001); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-x" 
tabIndex=0 w:st="on" designtimesp=21442><st1:PlaceName w:st="on" designtimesp=21443>Illinois</st1:PlaceName> 
<st1:PlaceType w:st="on" designtimesp=21444>Theatre</st1:PlaceType> <st1:PlaceType 
w:st="on" designtimesp=21445>Center</st1:PlaceType></st1:place> and/or The Philharmonic Symphony, 
or participating in a social service agency. <o:p designtimesp=21446></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21447><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21448><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21449>"I 
love the village," said Muchnik, a resident since 1971. 
<o:p designtimesp=21450></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21451><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21452><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21453>She 
is married to longtime <st1:place 
style="BACKGROUND-POSITION: left bottom; BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(res://ietag.dll/#34/#1001); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-x" 
tabIndex=0 w:st="on" designtimesp=21454><st1:PlaceName w:st="on" designtimesp=21455>Governors</st1:PlaceName> 
<st1:PlaceType w:st="on" designtimesp=21456>State</st1:PlaceType> <st1:PlaceType 
w:st="on" designtimesp=21457>University</st1:PlaceType></st1:place> educator Mel Muchnik and the 
couple has three grown sons. <o:p designtimesp=21458></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21459><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21460><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21461>"We've had a very good life living 
here," she said. "We want to go on living here." <o:p designtimesp=21462></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21463><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21464><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21465>Muchnik plans to visit her children 
and her five grandchildren often. "It's going to be something to see them during 
the middle of the week," she said. <o:p designtimesp=21466></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21467><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21468><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21469>Her 
positive outlook stems from an interesting and positive career. 
<o:p designtimesp=21470></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21471><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21472><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21473>"I've loved my experiences in local 
government as varied as they have been," Muchnik said. 
<o:p designtimesp=21474></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21475><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21476><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21477>She 
was director of planning and community development in <st1:City 
style="BACKGROUND-POSITION: left bottom; BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(res://ietag.dll/#34/#1001); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-x" 
tabIndex=0 w:st="on" designtimesp=21478><st1:place 
style="BACKGROUND-POSITION: left bottom; BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(res://ietag.dll/#34/#1001); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-x" 
tabIndex=0 w:st="on" designtimesp=21479>Blue Island</st1:place></st1:City> from 1983 to 1985. Two 
years prior, she was city planner, working on historic preservation. 
<o:p designtimesp=21480></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21481><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21482><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21483>Muchnik was involved with the 
<st1:State w:st="on" designtimesp=21484>Illinois</st1:State> and Michigan Heritage Corridor 
Commission, the first national history corridor established in the 
<st1:country-region w:st="on" designtimesp=21485><st1:place 
style="BACKGROUND-POSITION: left bottom; BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(res://ietag.dll/#34/#1001); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-x" 
tabIndex=0 w:st="on" designtimesp=21486>united States</st1:place></st1:country-region>, from 1985 
to 1991. <o:p designtimesp=21487></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21488><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21489><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21490>Appointed by former U.S. Secretary 
of Interior Donald Paul Hodel, the commission was created and empowered to 
establish policy for the newly created linear historic park, the first national 
park in the state and the first urban national park in the <st1:country-region 
w:st="on" designtimesp=21491><st1:place 
style="BACKGROUND-POSITION: left bottom; BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(res://ietag.dll/#34/#1001); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-x" 
tabIndex=0 w:st="on" designtimesp=21492>United States</st1:place></st1:country-region>. 
<o:p designtimesp=21493></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21494><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21495><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21496>Elected three times, Muchnik was a 
<st1:place 
style="BACKGROUND-POSITION: left bottom; BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(res://ietag.dll/#34/#1001); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-x" 
tabIndex=0 w:st="on" designtimesp=21497>Park Forest</st1:place> trustee from 1982 to 1988. 
<o:p designtimesp=21498></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21499><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21500><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21501>She 
was a member of District 163's board from 1973 to 1978 and was president of the 
board for three years. <o:p designtimesp=21502></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21503><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21504><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21505>Muchnik was chairperson of the 
Housing Coalition of the South Suburbs from 1990 to 1992. Known today as 
Diversity Inc., the organization is a consortium of municipalities concerned 
with fair housing issues. <o:p designtimesp=21506></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21507><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21508><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21509>She 
was on the board of directors and an organizing member of the Southwest Suburban 
Economic Development Commission from 1985 to 1987. <o:p designtimesp=21510></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21511><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21512><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21513>Muchnik was the first city manager 
in Country Club Hills. Serving there from 1988 to 1994, Muchnik helped establish 
the city manager form of government and professionalize it in that municipality. 
<o:p designtimesp=21514></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21515><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21516><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21517>Muchnik developed a multi-step 
budget process. For the first time in the city's history, Country Club Hills was 
recognized with a Distinguished Budget Award by the Government Finance Officers 
Association. <o:p designtimesp=21518></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21519><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21520><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21521>She 
guided development of the city's first capital plan; oversaw construction of the 
city's $3 million city hall; initiated a systematic approach to planning and 
zoning, and developed the city's first long-range plans for infrastructure 
improvement and maintenance. <o:p designtimesp=21522></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21523><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21524><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21525>As 
manager of <st1:place 
style="BACKGROUND-POSITION: left bottom; BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(res://ietag.dll/#34/#1001); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-x" 
tabIndex=0 w:st="on" designtimesp=21526>Park Forest</st1:place>, Muchnik said she did not envision 
herself as manager of a local government, let alone overseeing village ownership 
of a shopping center. <o:p designtimesp=21527></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21528><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21529><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21530>Much of it has been a 
learn-as-you-go experience, Muchnik said. <o:p designtimesp=21531></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21532><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21533><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21534>"It's been a long, slow process, but 
I think the downtown is evolving again into something <st1:place 
style="BACKGROUND-POSITION: left bottom; BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(res://ietag.dll/#34/#1001); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-x" 
tabIndex=0 w:st="on" designtimesp=21535>Park Forest</st1:place> can be proud of," she said. 
<o:p designtimesp=21536></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21537><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21538><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21539>The 
first few years as <st1:place 
style="BACKGROUND-POSITION: left bottom; BACKGROUND-IMAGE: url(res://ietag.dll/#34/#1001); BACKGROUND-REPEAT: repeat-x" 
tabIndex=0 w:st="on" designtimesp=21540>Park Forest</st1:place> manager were some of the most 
emotionally draining, having to cut the budget to reflect the revenue picture, 
she said. <o:p designtimesp=21541></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21542><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21543><SPAN 
style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21544>With much hard work, the budget has 
received several Distinguished Budget Awards, and after audits, the Certificate 
for Excellence in Financial Reporting. <o:p designtimesp=21545></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
<P DESIGNTIMESP=21546><FONT face=Arial size=2 DESIGNTIMESP=21547><SPAN style="FONT-SIZE: 10pt; FONT-FAMILY: Arial" DESIGNTIMESP=21548>The 
village's plan to convert the old shopping plaza into a traditional, main street 
downtown was recognized by the Illinois Chapter of the American Planning 
Association and the American Public Works Association. The concept was honored 
by the <STRONG DESIGNTIMESP=21549>Metropolitan Planning Council</STRONG> with its prestigious 
<STRONG DESIGNTIMESP=21550>Burham Award</STRONG>. <o:p designtimesp=21551></o:p></SPAN></FONT></P>
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