SYCAMORE – DeKalb County Democrats have chosen a candidate to fill the County Board seat left vacant by the resignation Misty Haji-Sheikh. The board will vote June 11 on whether to approve Terri Mann-Lamb for the District 7 seat.
DeKalb County Democratic Central Committee Chairman Jim Luebke said Mann-Lamb, one of three eligible candidates in the district, is the right person for the job despite having no previous government experience.
“She’s open to change and new ideas,” Luebke said. “She’s all for making sure every voter gets a vote, good government and honesty, unlike the current White House.”
County Democrats selected Mann-Lamb as their candidate May 12. Haji-Sheikh announced her resignation at a board meeting March 20, but served through the May 15 board meeting.
Mann-Lamb, 53, is a New Jersey native who moved to DeKalb in 1996 to raise her three children in a smaller community. She said she immediately fell in love with the area and began volunteering with organizations such as the former Welcome Cafe, which served DeKalb residents every other month at Unitarian Church.
“I care about the city I live in and the town and the county,” Mann-Lamb said.
She said she believes county Democrats chose her because she can bring a new perspective to the board.
“With our current political situation in the world, I think that people have to be ready for more diversity and you see a lot of things going backward and you want to pull things forward,” Mann-Lamb said.
She said her potential role in government will be new to her, although she’s encouraged by the board’s history of bipartisanship.
“I’ll be learning,” Mann-Lamb said. “I was excited to hear the parties on the board are very amicable to each other and talk. That’s comforting to know that because I stopped watching the news for a while because it was just violent.”
Mann-Lamb runs the bakery at the Northern Illinois University food services on campus. She also performs in a Unitarian choir group. She served in the U.S. Army from 1984 to 1990.
“If it were up to me, I’d still probably be in the military,” Mann-Lamb said.
Her one super power is being able to feed people well, she said. She’s been a cook in one form or another from the military to volunteering at the former Welcome Cafe, and hopes to bring that same level of passion to serving the county.
“You get older in life, you see things differently,” Mann-Lamb said. “Your first goal is to have children, and as they grow up and move on, you’re left with your life and the things around it that you want to elevate and keep good and always work on for improvement.”