Matt Walsh, the only teenager running for commissioner in the April 5 election, held a fundraiser at Doc Ryan’s bar, 7432 Madison, last Saturday.
“We usually have middle-aged, like 30- to 50-year-olds running for the position,” Walsh said. “As an 18-year-old, I know what it’s like to go to the schools here. I know how the activities are for the youth.”
While he understands that voters might be skeptical about his age, he believes he can overcome it. He said he is working to familiarize himself with the commissioner form of government by attending council meetings, and studying the budgets and zoning codes.
“If I know as much as they do, the age isn’t an issue,” Walsh said.
Walsh believes that Forest Park needs to improve the amount of activities that are available to young people. As commissioner he would also support improvements to Roosevelt Road to attract businesses to the area.
Running for commissioner won’t get in the way of his education, though. Walsh plans to go to college and has been accepted to both the University of Illinois at Chicago and DePaul University.