The City of DeKalb – A “Live Wire” Community…

The City of DeKalb, incorporated in 1856, is an 11.5 sq. mile community located 60 miles west of Chicago along Interstate I-88. In 1961, a Council-Manager form of government was adopted. Seven aldermen are elected, one in each of the seven wards, and aldermanic elections are held every two years, at which time half of the City Council is elected. The Mayor is elected, at large, every four years. The City Manager is appointed by the City Council and all other employees are appointed by the City Manager. The elected officials determine policy while professional, appointed officials implement policy. The City of DeKalb is a home rule community.

The DeKalb area has traditionally been a center for agri-business and agricultural research. DeKalb Ag Research (now Monsanto) and the DeKalb County Farm Bureau both began in DeKalb near the turn of the century. A rich mix of manufacturing, agriculture, small business and research facilities provide DeKalb with a very stable economic base.

DeKalb is home of Northern Illinois University, the second largest university in the State of Illinois, with a student enrollment of nearly 23,000. Chartered in 1895, Northern Illinois University is a comprehensive teaching and research institution The university is composed of seven degree-granting colleges that together offer 51 undergraduate degree programs and 70 graduate degree programs, including 10 Ph.D. programs, doctoral degrees in Education and the Juris Doctorate. Northern is a NCAA Division I school and the NIU Huskies compete in the Mid-American Conference.

Kishwaukee College, located in nearby Malta, has been firmly committed to serving the needs of the community since 1968. The community college is accessible and flexible in providing a wide range of educational opportunities for people of both genders and of all ages and ethnic or cultural backgrounds. The College offers more than 80 associate degrees and/or certificate programs.

DeKalb Community Unit School District #428, in partnership with parents and the entire community, provides public education for pre-kindergarten through high school. Brooks Elementary School is a new elementary school adjacent to The Bridges of RiverMist. The new DeKalb High School that is opening in 2011 is also very close to the subdivision. Private education is available through St. Mary’s in DeKalb and Cornerstone Christian Academy in nearby Sycamore.

The Haish Memorial Library Building, home of the DeKalb Public Library, was financed in part by a bequest of $150,000 from barbed wire millionaire Jacob Haish. In 1980 the Haish Memorial Library was added to the National Register of Historic Places joining the Ellwood House, the Glidden House, the Gurler House, and the Egyptian Theater as DeKalb landmarks.

The DeKalb Park District offers more than 40 parks totaling over 700 acres designed to serve all types of recreational needs. The Kishwaukee Kiwanis pathway system totaling 8 miles in length by 2000, connects DeKalb with Sycamore and the Great Western Trail to the east. Other DeKalb Park District facilities include the Hopkins Park Community Center, the Hopkins Swimming Pool Facility, Haish Gymnasium and the new indoor Sports and Recreation Center.

Shopping is easily accessible and conveniently located in the “center” of town in the historic Downtown District (an Illinois Main Street Community) and along State Highway 23 between DeKalb and Sycamore.  The area is filled with a mixture of independent merchants and businesses as well as nationally recognized retailers such as WalMart, Lowes, Menards, Target, K-Mart, etc.