Below are candidate-submitted answers to a biographical survey Forest Park Review sent out to all candidates running in this year’s elections.
Why are you running for this office?
I am running for this office because I want to serve the park that been essential part of my life and would love to have the opportunity to shape the future of the park.
Have you ever run for or served in a local political office before? If so, when and which office?
I ran for Forest Park Village Commissioner in 2011.
Are there individuals or groups which actively encouraged your interest in running for the Park board?
What do you consider to be the greatest strengths of the Park District?
The Park has a dedicated, experienced, and friendly staff. The town has been very supportive and connected to the park, as evidenced by its willingness to help improve the park. The park has a successful record of acquiring grants including the tennis court renovation, the upcoming playground update, and eventual basketball court project. The park we have now is arguably the strongest in the area with the pool, turf soccer field, six tennis courts, and well-maintained baseball fields.
What are your strongest concerns about the district at this time?
Concern is a strong word. I do believe there are some things that can be done to improve the park. I would like to increase input from the kids of Forest Park by working with district 91 even more to organize surveys or events to gather ideas and suggestions from those who rely on the park most. I also believe it would be productive to form a group of neighboring or nearby towns to share ideas, resources, and programs if need be. This would hopefully lead to forming some cross-town competitive events such as an ‘olympics’ and individual sport tournaments.
What are your thoughts on the Roos Building and where do you think the board’s purchase of the property will go in 2013?
I believe that progress will be made soon on the Roos purchase. The project that will follow will be the biggest project in recent Forest Park history. I want to include community input as soon as the purchase is made and through the construction process. I like the plan that was put out by the park board a few years ago but I believe we will have to revisit the use of the front of the Roos building because it’s condition may have worsened. If the condition is still sufficient I believe we should communicate with the police as to whether it would be problematic to block out open green space with the building. In addition to a teen room, versatile classroom and recreational space I would like to prioritize including basketball courts, an indoor track, and fitness room.
How many Park board meetings have you attended in the past two years?
I have attended 2 park board meetings.