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Report Alleges Nepotism By High School Board President, State Rep. Candidate

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FOREST PARK, Ill. (CBS) — The president of the Proviso High School District board in the western suburbs is running for Illinois state representative, and a report says he has had 19 close friends and relatives hired for school jobs.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports, the Chicago Sun-Times says among those who were given jobs was Welch’s brother, Billy Welch, who works as a janitor at Proviso West High School for a salary of $56,760. Welch also hired the best man at his wedding, Ron “R.C.” Anderson, who makes $90,290 per year as a night foreman at Proviso Math and Science Academy, the Sun-Times reported.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports

In addition, two women say they were fired shortly after their relationships with Welch ended, the newspaper reported.

Welch’s former fiancée, Nikita Johnson, served as assistant superintendent and operations at District 209 until being removed in a district-wide shakeup last year, while Beyonca Johnson, who is no relation, worked as an assistant to the superintendent until being fired in 2008, shortly after breaking up with Welch, the Sun-Times reported.

After being fired, Beyonca Johnson filed suit against the district for wrongful termination and took out an order of protection against Welch, but the suit and order were both dropped, the is now running against Welch for state representative. She is now running against Welch for the 7th District Illinois General Assembly seat.

The Sun-Times also reported that at least 10 current or former school district employees are connected to Melrose Park Mayor Ron Serpico, and that Welch told the principal of Proviso West to “make it happen” when Danyell Hill, a friend of Serpico’s was looking for a job. Hill was hired as a secretary at the school, the Sun-Times reported.

For Welch’s part, an e-mail statement to the Sun-Times says he thinks of most of the school district employees as friends. He did not comment to the paper about the nepotism allegations.

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