For the third straight year, Thornton Township took home hardware at the annual Township Officials of Illinois Conference in Springfield. Thornton Township, the largest township in Illinois, received four awards ranging from its communication department to its general assistance programs. The honors included best Township Social Media, best Township Communication Messenger of the Year awarded to Communication Manager Ernst Lamothe Jr, best General Assistance Caseworker of the Year awarded to Lakeela Jennings and most innovative General Assistance program.
“We are very proud of the hard work our staff does to provide the highest quality of service to our community,” said Frank M. Zuccarelli, Thornton Township supervisor. “Our motto is people working with people and we truly believe that township government is at the ground floor of providing the necessary programs that communities need. We are honored and humbled by this award and that the Township of Illinois recognizes the hard work we have put in this year to help our local residents.”
The township provides general assistance program offering financial relief for qualified residents. In addition, the township registers voters, helps with homeowners and senior citizen homestead exemption and helps with food, gas and energy bill relief.
“I work with a lot of incredible people that helped me get to where I am. I am just so thankful to work for a great township,” said Jennings.
In addition, the Thornton Township Communication department has received four awards in the past two years. Winning best township government social media back to back years, as well as 2017 best township government Website and best communication department this year.
“What we do at Thornton Township is very special. Our goal is always to serve as many people as possible and get the word out about all our great programs,” said Lamothe Jr. “It is a wonderful feeling that the township officials of Illinois recognized our continuous hard work.”
Thornton Township is made up of all or part of 17 south suburban communities. They are a three-time winner of Township of the Year in 2004, 2008 and 2016. The township also has a robust youth and adult program that features free family counseling and after school tutoring and programs in Dolton, Harvey and Riverdale.
“We understand the importance of working together for a common goal,” added Zuccarelli. “We are here to serve the people and make sure that we build each other up and we build our communities up. We are able to accomplish this because we have a strong board of trustees who care about the community and a strong management team in all areas working to make sure we provide the best services possible.”