Cook County Commissioner Joan Murphy died Sunday due to complications from breast cancer.
Murphy, 79, battled breast cancer since 2012.
She was first elected to represent Cook County's 6th district in 2002. She formerly served as clerk of Crestwood, clerk of Worth Township and Worth Township supervisor.
Condolences have poured in from Murphy's colleagues, including Cook County Commissioner John P. Daley (11th District).
"Joan advocated for a greater role for women in government and she was very proud of the Democratic Party's recent nomination of Hillary Clinton for President," Daley said in a statement.
Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle released the following statement on Murphy's death:
I am saddened to learn of the death today of Commissioner Joan Murphy. 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: first as the Village Clerk in Crestwood, then as Worth Township Clerk and finally as Worth Township Supervisor. Joan was born and grew up in Boston. A discerning ear could still pick up on some inflections of that unique dialect when she spoke, and Joan often joked that she was working hard on her Cook County accent. Her contributions to the Board were many: during her 14 years as a Commissioner, she served on virtually every committee. She cared deeply about and was a champion for working people, and chaired the Board's Labor Committee. Joan 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 and was long active in the National Association of Counties (NACo). My thoughts and prayers are with her family at this difficult time.
Crestwood Mayor Lou Presta also reacted to news of Murphy's passing.
"It is with great sadness that we learn of the passing of Cook County Commissioner Joan Patricia Murphy," he wrote in a Facebook post. "Joan was the first Village Clerk in Crestwood, elected in 1965 when few women held public office. She went on to be a great County Commissioner serving the people of the 6th district, including our village. She will be greatly missed."