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Sterling City Council OKs band commission appointee

O'Keefe only member with music background

STERLING – The Challand Middle School band director is the newest member of the Sterling Band Commission.

The Sterling City Council on Monday approved Mayor Skip Lee’s appointment of Kevin O’Keefe to the five-member commission. The members serve 5-year staggered terms; O’Keefe’s term expires June 30, 2020.

The commission is responsible for overseeing the municipal band, concerts, and other city programs in the performing arts, including exclusive control over the band’s finances. The commission, which reports to the council, also is responsible for management and uses of the Grandon Civic Center.

O’Keefe is a 2006 graduate of Illinois Wesleyan University. After graduation, he was a music teacher and band director at Montmorency School in Rock Falls, moving to Sterling. He also spent time as band and choir director in the Eastland school district, before taking the Challand job.

O’Keefe plays with the symphony orchestras in Clinton and Muscatine, Iowa. He is a member and assistant director of the Rock River Valley Barbershop Chorus, and sings in a quartet, 74 and a Quarter. He has been director of music at Rock Falls United Methodist Church for 9 years.

Mayor Skip Lee said O’Keefe should add a new dimension to the commission.

“There is no one on the board now who has a music background, so this appointment brings an important element to the group,” Lee said.

The Sterling Band Commission meets at 5:30 p.m. on the second Monday of each month in the City Hall Community Room.

In other action, the council approved two payment requests totaling $177,368.91 to Twin City Construction for improvements made to Sixth and Eighth Avenues.

The payments are for sanitary sewer work, road reconstruction, and stormwater upgrades improvements in the 200 block of Eighth Avenue, and road work in the 200 block of Sixth Avenue.

The money was taken from the city’s wastewater fund, because of the extension of the sanitary sewer system, and the local option sales tax fund.


The Sterling City Council next meets at 6:30 p.m. Jan. 18 at City Hall, 212 Third Ave., on the first floor in the Council Chambers.

Go to or call City Hall at 815-632-6621 for an agenda or more information.

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