Meet the Carbondale City Council

Mayor Joel Fritzler:

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Joel Fritzler was elected Mayor of Carbondale in 2011 after serving two terms as a City Council member. He also works at SIU’s Office of Research Development and Administration and spent a few years in Africa in the early 90s — first with the Peace Corps and then with the United Nations. One of his campaign initiatives was to grant liquor licenses to grocery stores, which was passed in July 2011. Known for his famous mustache, Fritzler’s Save It or Shave It campaign last fall raised more than $600 for the Carbondale Community High School scholarship program. More people donated to the “shave it” campaign, so Fritzler shaved the mustache, but it has since made its return.

Councilwoman Corene McDaniel:

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Corene McDaniel has served on the City Council since 2003. She is the cofounder and coordinator of volunteers at the Southern Illinois African American Museum at the University Mall. In the past, she has shown great support for the Carbondale Convention and Tourism Bureau. McDaniel casted the sole vote in May to continue funding for the bureau and publicly stated her disappointment in the rest of the council. “I think this is appalling, and I would like the council to reconsider,” she said. The council has since decided to reinstate the city bureau.



Councilman Lance Jack:

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Lance Jack rejoined the City Council in 2011 after resigning from a seven-year tenure in 2010. He originally resigned because his position on the council meant he was also on the Liquor Control Commission Board, so he was ineligible to receive a liquor license for his restaurant, Fat Patties. When he rejoined the council, he hired a lawyer and was able to step down from the liquor board and retain his liquor license as well as his position on the council.






Councilman Don Monty:

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Don Monty joined the City Council in 2011 after having served as an assistant city manager for 35 years. He is known for thoroughly examining ordinances and bringing questions to the council before voting.

Councilwoman Jane Adams:

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Jane Adams was elected to the City Council in 2011.  She has a primary role in the Carbondale Arbor District, where she handles its finances and owns several homes. The Arbor District is a district of neighborhoods near SIU that is designated as a historic district.  She takes a tough stance on crime and advocates for a quality and trustworthy police force.

Councilman Chris Wissmann:

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Chris Wissmann was elected to the City Council in 2003 and is the editor of Nightlife, an area entertainment guide that runs every Thursday. When the council considered signing with an outside agency for a tourism bureau in August, Wissmann was in support of selecting Southernmost Illinois Tourism Bureau. Some community members believed this was a conflict of interest on Wissmann’s part, because Wissman is partners with Thomas Publishing owner Jason Thomas for Nightlife, and Thomas Publishing prints the tourism guide for Southernmost. “I am a partner in and editor of the Nightlife. End of story,” Wissmann said. “I have no employment or ownership interest in Thomas Publishing.” Mayor Fritzler said he didn’t think Wissmann would have a conflict of interest in the subject.

Councilman Lee Fronabarger:

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Lee Fronabarger was appointed by the council to fill Mayor Fritzler’s open council seat in 2011 and is the only unelected sitting member on the council. Some community members were angered that they didn’t get to vote on the open seat. His extensive record of community service gave reason to his appointment and his call for cooperation between the city, park and school districts brought him some attention early on.

City Manager Kevin Baity:

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Originally from Flora, Baity has worked for the city since 2006. The Carbondale City Council appointed Baity to city manager Jan. 4 after months of searching for candidates throughout the country. Baity had been the acting city manager since Allen Gill retired in November. Upon Baity’s appointment, Councilman Chris Wissmann said his agreeable personality and familiarity with the minute details of the city gave Baity an advantage.

The next Carbondale City Council meeting will be Sept. 11 and the agenda will be posted Aug. 31.

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About Caleb Motsinger

Caleb Motsinger can be reached at or 536-3311 ext. 269.

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