Johnson County Chair Ed Eilert says he suffered mild stroke earlier this month — ‘I feel lucky’

Ed Eilert, above, last year addressing a gathering marking the one-year anniversary of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Kansas City metro, is not running for re-election. His current term will end in January, when a new commission chair is sworn in. File photo.

Johnson County Commission Chair Ed Eilert confirmed Thursday that he suffered a mild stroke about three weeks ago but is now doing well and has had no lingering ill effects.

What we know: Eilert has been back at work on the dais since the stroke occurred on June 2.

  • He was absent for the June 2 meeting but returned for a special meeting on June 6 where the commission approved new solar farm regulations and has been present at the regular weekly meetings in June.

What he says: “I have never felt ill in the entire process,” he told the Post. “I feel lucky. It could have been a lot worse but it was not.”

  • He added that he continues to take medicine to control high blood pressure.

More details: The stroke was diagnosed after Eilert said he woke up one morning feeling off and noticed his blood pressure was high.

  • He said his wife insisted he go to a hospital, where he underwent about 30 hours of evaluation. But doctors told him he need not alter any of his activities.
  • “In my judgment it was a minor medical situation,” he said.

Plans to finish out term: Eilert, 82, is one of Johnson County’s most tenured public officials, and he said there is no question he will finish his final term as commission chairman.

  • He has been on the county commission since 2007 and has been its chairman since 2011.
  • Before that, he served 24 years as mayor of Overland Park.
  • He is not seeking re-election this fall, and his term will end when a new commission is sworn in in January 2023.

Roxie Hammill is a freelance journalist who reports frequently for the Post and other Kansas City area publications. You can reach her at