Christine Settingsgaard

Christine Settingsgaard sits in her yard on Sept 14, 2022, in Barrington. Settingsgaard was lured into sophisticated financial scam this summer via a man she met on Hinge. (Stacey Wescott / Chicago Tribune)

Only when it was too late did Christine Settingsgaard see the red flags festooning her online boyfriend.

He communicated by text messages and phone calls, never by video. He always had an excuse for why he couldn’t meet in person. And when he was supposedly called away to a remote job site, he said he couldn’t access his bank, which led to an urgent request.

He asked Settingsgaard, 37, a single mother of three who lives in Barrington, to deposit an $85,000 check into her bank account and then wire $82,000 to his sister in Utah. When she was done, he said, he would give her a big surprise.

“Trust me, you’ll love it!!!” he wrote.

Settingsgaard got a surprise, all right. The man she thought was Mark, an architectural engineer from Greece, was a catfisher. His entire persona was fake, and so was the check he used to trap her in an old but durable scam.

The swindle takes advantage of a vulnerability in America’s banking system, which sometimes makes funds from deposited checks available before they’re confirmed as genuine. Banks essentially advance the money to their customers, but when checks turn out to be fraudulent, customers must repay what they’ve spent.

Thousands of Americans are fleeced for millions of dollars each year through various permutations of the scam. Steve Baker, a former official in the Federal Trade Commission and investigator for the Better Business Bureau, has found that job seekers, business owners and even attorneys have been stung.

Read more here.


Cynthia Rowley

The suburbs have been home to some of the greatest writers, actors, sports stars and business pioneers of the past 150 years.

Our list includes Oscar winners, Olympians and important historical figures — from the presidential candidate who came closest to shattering “that highest and hardest glass ceiling” for women to the reporter known for exposing Watergate.

There are dozens of other names we could have included. But we did our best to highlight a wide range of people who were born or lived in the area during influential periods of their lives. Some you know well; others might surprise you.

If you feel we missed someone important, tell us at youcandobetter@dailyherald.com.

In no particular order, here they are. Read and enjoy.

Richard Duchossois The businessman — who died earlier this year at the age of 100 — bought Arlington Park Race Track in 1983, and rebuilt it after a devastating fire in 1985.

Veronica Roth — The best-selling author of the “Divergent” novels, set in a dystopian Chicago and turned into movies, grew up in Barrington and graduated from Barrington High School.

Henry Paulson — The Barrington Hills native built a successful career in banking, including as CEO for Goldman Sachs. As Secretary of the Treasury under President George W. Bush, he was a key figure in helping stabilize the economy after the 2008 meltdown.

Cynthia Rowley — A native of Barrington, the fashion designer is known for a look described as “pretty-meets-sporty.” She appeared as a guest judge on “America’s Next Top Model” and “Project Runway.”

Terry Moran — The senior news correspondent for ABC News based in Washington, D.C., grew up in Mount Prospect and Barrington Hills.

Jim Gaffigan — The comedian, who spent part of his childhood in Elgin and Barrington, boasts an impressive resume as standup comedian, actor, writer, best-selling author and sitcom star.

Gary Fencik — The Barrington High School grad played college ball at Yale, then starred for the Bears from 1976 to 1987. The safety holds a franchise record for interceptions with 38.

Read the full Daily Herald article here.


David Koelling, left, and Jessen Koelling plan to open gigi, a new bistro in Barrington. David Koelling is a longtime restaurateur who has owned and operated eateries in Barrington and Wauconda.

A former Barrington restaurateur is returning with his son to open a new dining venue in a familiar location.

A wine bar and bistro named gigi is planned at 131 Park Ave. in Barrington, the site long occupied by the Bread Basket restaurant, a breakfast spot that closed during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Barrington residents David Koelling and Jessen Koelling are behind the venture.

“We have designed it around what we felt the town needs, which is a neighborhood bistro,” David Koelling said. “It’s just a place you can go and get a great meal and some fine wines without a lot of fluff.”

The menu will offer items including duck confit, oysters on the half shell, roasted chicken and fresh fish.

“We have some great sourcing lines with seafood and are going to have beautiful seafood,” David Koelling said.

The restaurant is slated to open in mid-December, depending on the supply line. The village also needs to give design approval for planned interior work, which Koelling describes as an update, not a “gut job.”

He’s aiming for a place where “you walk in the first week and you think we’ve been open for five years.”

The name David Koelling might be a familiar name to longtime Barrington residents. As a chef, he earned the first Chef Legacy Award in 2018 from Meals on Wheels Chicago’s Chef Council and once owned The Greenery, a fine dining restaurant on North Avenue in the 1980s and 90s.

Read more here.


Chicago’s skyscrapers are designed to sway so they don’t shatter, but the architects of the 1970 Illinois Constitution failed to follow those foundational rules: they imposed rigidity.

And 52 years later, Illinois taxpayers are paying dearly because public pensions cannot bend. Instead, the broken system imperils state services, could fail retirees and threatens to crush taxpayers.

Flexibility is important when you cannot know the strength of future headwinds. Lesson learned, right?


State lawmakers listened to the government unions that fund their campaigns and put a rigid change to the Illinois Constitution at the top of the Nov. 8 ballot. Union backers call it the “Workers’ Rights Amendment,” but if passed the vague wording of Amendment 1 would go far beyond stopping Illinois from becoming a right-to-work state and give government unions unyielding negotiating powers enshrined in the state constitution.

While lawmakers might not have learned from the pension fiasco – or chosen to ignore it as they curry favor with union support and cash for their campaigns – that doesn’t mean voters can’t guard their own wallets from the implications of Amendment 1.

The plain text of Amendment 1 does four things:

  • Creates a “fundamental right” for government workers to unionize and bargain – on par with freedom of speech and religion.
  • Expands bargaining for government worker unions beyond wages and benefits to include broad new subjects, including “economic welfare.”
  • Prohibits state and local lawmakers from passing taxpayer-friendly reforms, such as limits to the length of government union contracts or improved disciplinary measures for misconduct.
  • Bans right to work, a policy that protects workers from being fired for refusing to pay money to a union.

It’s hard to guess all the implications of Amendment 1 because the language is so broad. Analysis by the Illinois Policy Institute has uncovered a host of likely impacts, and none of them make Illinois a better place to live or work. That’s likely why no other state has granted these powers to a special interest.

Read more here.

Fick This

District 220 Board of Education President Sandra Fick-Bradford leads a cheer during the 2022 Barrington Homecoming Parade

“Barrington 220 students, staff, alumni and community members came together this past week to celebrate Homecoming 2022 in Barrington!

The week kicked off with an outdoor pep rally at Barrington Community Stadium, and spirit days at BHS. On Friday night the BHS seniors beat the juniors at the annual Filly football game. On Saturday the day kicked off with the annual Andy Anderson Pancake Breakfast at BHS, followed by the parade down Main Street, varsity football game and dance at BHS.”

Click here to view photos of Homecoming 2022


The District 220 Board of Education meets this evening at 7:00 PM at the District Administration Center, 515 W. Main Street. Some of the topics on their agenda include:

  • Consideration to Approve the SVN Broker Agreement for the Sale of 310 E. James Street
  • Consideration to Approve the Expulsion of Student 504901, and
  • Library Book Selection Process and Book Review Procedures

A copy of the agenda can be viewed here. The meeting will be live streamed on the district YouTube channel.

BM Dead Ducks

Bryan Muche, left, talks with Jim Henning during a Sept. 25 hunt at Crex Meadows Wildlife Area near Grantsburg. The Wisconsin north zone duck hunting season opened the previous day.

GRANTSBURG – Crex Meadows Wildlife Area near Grantsburg is one of my favorite state properties.

Not only do the 30,000 acres of restored wetland and brush prairie offer a lot of space for wildlife and people, its shallow waters make it unsuitable for most power boats.

It leads to a quieter, more natural recreational experience, one that has for many years drawn me to Crex for the opening of Wisconsin’s north zone duck hunting season.

Other public properties echo with the harsh rattling of mud motors on hunters’ boats at 0-dark-thirty on any day of the waterfowl seasons. If you didn’t know better, you’d think a caravan of Harley riders were coursing through the marsh.

But along with a cadre of like-minded friends at Crex it’s been canoes and kayaks and dogs and waterfowl in a sprawling marsh.

We camp at a rest area on the northern portion of the property and eat around a fire pit.

Our group included Jim Henning and his Labrador retriever Tess, both of Grafton, and his son-in-law Ramsey Kammerzelt of Kiel, as well as Bob Hunt of Dundee, Illinois, Ryan Kantorowicz of Fox River Grove, Illinois, Bryan Muche of Barrington Hills, Illinois, and me.

Read more here.


Amendment 1 on the November ballot in Illinois has supporters saying it gives workers an even playing field when negotiating with their higher-ups. Opponents say the measure will lead to more tax increases.

The amendment has been the subject of much debate as many Democrats say the amendment is a way to codify workers’ rights in Illinois.

Bryce Hill of the Illinois Policy Institute said it likely will increase property taxes.

“Amendment 1 would open up and create this Pandora’s Box of new subjects of collective bargaining, and each new subject will ultimately raise the cost to taxpayers,” Hill said. “The cost of government gets more expensive when you have to meet new demands.”

Illinois residents already pay the second highest property taxes in the nation. The Illinois Policy Institute property tax calculator indicates that if Amendment 1 is passed, Cook County residents who own a house valued at the county average will see a $3,000 increase in property taxes over the next four years. DuPage County residents meeting the same requirements would see an estimated $2,200 increase and in Madison County, property owners would see on average a $700 increase over that same time frame.

Hill said if voters approve the measure, it would also stop future tax relief legislation.

“These pro-taxpayer reforms, the things that taxpayers need to get relief from this crushing property tax burden, will be thwarted,” Hill said. “Those things will be deemed unconstitutional in many cases because of the wording of the language.”

Read more here.


“The Annual BACOG Level 1 Private Well Water Testing Event will be held Thursday, October 13, 2022, 11:00am – 6:30pm at The Barrington Area Library.

Purchase water testing kits from October 3 – 10 at your local Village/Township Office. The full list includes: BACOG Office, Barrington Hills Village Hall, Barrington Township Office, Deer Park Village Hall, Lake Barrington Village Hall, South Barrington Village Hall and Tower Lakes Village Hall during regular office hours

Households with private wells are advised to test for bacteria and nitrates on an annual basis to detect these invisible, odorless contaminants. Bacteria and nitrates can result from animal, insect or human waste or fertilizers reaching the well water and can cause illness in humans. 

On October 13, residents may drop off their water sample kits off at the BACOG Event at the Barrington Area Library anytime between the house of 11:00am and 6:30pm. Participants will park in the Library lot and come into the building. We will be in the first community room on the left (there will be plenty of signage). Although primarily a drop-off event, several of our Community Partners will be there with information and take-aways, along with the Lake County Health Department Staff, who will be available to residents for water testing questions.

Test results will be emailed to homeowners within two weeks. Any homeowner with positive results for bacteria or elevated nitrate levels will be contacted within 48 hours by the Lake County Health Department.”

Click here for more information.


The 2022 Barrington High School Homecoming parade is tomorrow morning:

“The BHS Homecoming Parade gets underway at 10:15am on Saturday, Oct. 1. All participants will leave from the METRA Station and march down Main Street to BHS. Alumni floats line up behind all the high school student entries, with the exception of the 50th Reunion Class which will take their place in the front of the parade.”

Since resurfacing construction continues along the most of the parade route, trust us when we write there is little that cannot be accomplished in downtown Barrington before 9:00 AM. So, unless you’re participating in or viewing the festivities, we strongly suggest getting an early start tomorrow.

A list of 2022 Homecoming activities can be found here. Enjoy.

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