PEKIN, Ill. (WMBD) — Pekin Mayor Mark Luft resigned from the position on Monday.

Luft is pursuing a new opportunity he said is good for his family, but does not allow him to serve as an elected official.

An empty chair was front and center at Monday’s Pekin City Council meeting. Luft did not attend the meeting and his resignation statement was read aloud.

“I would like to express my sincerest gratitude to a great staff who have helped move the City of Pekin forward. I would also like to thank the community for giving me the honor of working for them as a councilmember and their mayor,” he stated.

Pekin Councilwoman Becky Cloyd, who is running for mayor, will assume the role of Mayor Pro Tempore until April’s election.

Luft was elected as Pekin mayor in 2019. He also served as State Representative for the 91st District from 2020 to 2021. He lost the primary for the newly redrawn 93rd District to Travis Weaver.