During a special Board of Commissioners meeting, President Toni Preckwinkle and the Cook County Board of Commissioners presented Commissioner Joan Patricia Murphy’s family with a resolution honoring the Commissioner for her many contributions to Cook County and the Forest Preserves of Cook County.
“Joan’s long career in public service is one that even those of us who have spent years in government can admire. She served her southwest suburban constituents tirelessly as a Cook County Commissioner since 2002 and before that, in a variety of local offices,” said Cook County Board and Forest Preserves Board President Toni Preckwinkle said. “She was a thoughtful legislator, a class act respected by and considerate of her colleagues, ever kind to others and possessed a good sense of humor. She was fully committed and dedicated to the residents of Cook County.”
“We are deeply saddened by the death of Commissioner Murphy,” said Arnold Randall, General Superintendent of the Forest Preserves. “We were fortunate that her position as Cook County Commissioner enabled her to have an integral role in the success of the Forest Preserves.”
Commissioner Murphy was a long-time supporter of the Forest Preserves, and a staunch supporter in many of the agency’s recent projects including the opening of five campgrounds throughout the County.
“Commissioner Murphy strongly believed that the Forest Preserves’ campgrounds would promote active living for residents and visitors, as well as keep young people focused on positive activities while enjoying time spent with family and friends,” said Randall.
Commissioner Murphy was also extensively involved in the planning of Oak Forest Heritage Preserve, the Forest Preserves’ most recent opening. The 176.3-acre site was acquired by the Forest Preserves from Cook County in 2010 and has important ecological, cultural and historical value. Improvements to the site began in August 2014, and include a 1.7-mile loop trail and a series of interpretive signage telling the historic stories of Oak Forest Heritage Preserve.
“Commissioner Murphy genuinely cared for her constituents and all residents of Cook County. She played a very active part in ensuring everyone could enjoy the County’s public green space; she will definitely be missed,” said Randall.
In addition to the resolution, it was announced during the Board of Commissioners meeting that a scholarship fund is being established in Commissioner Murphy’s honor. The scholarship will be granted annually to high school students who reside in Commissioner Murphy’s 6th district who have academic aspirations with a B grade average or better and who also have performed exemplary community service within Commissioner Murphy’s 6th District.
The contributions made by Commissioner Murphy to Cook County and the Forest Preserves will be enjoyed by residents and visitors for many years to come.