This article was edited on May 3 after a brief interview with Amidei.
Moses Amidei has accepted an offer from the village government to become Forest Park’s new village administrator. He will begin May 11 pending official vote by the village council during the May 10 regularly scheduled meeting.
Amidei served as village administrator of Wadsworth, a largely rural Lake County suburb bordering Wisconsin, for 14 years. He left that position in Oct. 2020 by what he called “mutual parting of ways.”
He will replace Tim Gillian, who retired on Jan. 29 but has continued working in the role throughout the search for his successor. The search was carried out by a committee comprised of Mayor Rory Hoskins, village council members Joe Byrnes and Jessica Voogd, Bridget Lane of the Chamber of Commerce’s Economic Development Committee, as well as Vanessa Moritz, village clerk and human resources director.
“Moses will be a great fit for the village,” Hoskins told the Review on April 29.
In a brief interview with the Review on April 30, Amidei said he was looking forward to his position in the village, explaining that his niche is small towns. Originally from north suburban Highwood, he grew up there and was involved in local government serving for a time as interim village administrator.
When his career took him to Wadsworth, a much more rural community, he said it was like learning local government all over again. Wadsworth bills itself as “The Village of Country Living,” which reflects its requirement of a minimum one-acre lot size. The community is 94 percent white and less than 2 percent Black.
Because of the diversity in his experiences, Amidei said he has a resume well-balanced between a full-service village administration and a more limited, rural environment. In Wadsworth, said Amidei, he had a hand in every aspect of local government.
“Direct access to the citizenry is why local government is so important,” Amidei said, and it’s also what he likes best about working in a small municipality.
Amidei said it has been apparent in the time he’s spent in Forest Park, most recently on a tour with Hoskins on April 28, how much people here are committed to the town.
“I look forward to learning how special this place is,” Amidei said. “I’m ready to learn and listen to why people love Forest Park so much. The strong sense of community is evident.”
Already, he said, he can see that the diversity of people and the strategic location of the town are two strong features.
“It’s a great place for families. It’s a great place to start a business. And it’s in a strategic location, with public transportation options readily available; it’s a first-choice location for someone who wants a suburban location but be close to the city,” Amidei said.
In Forest Park, Amidei also is looking forward to working with village staff. In the short term, he said his goals are on building a great team, meeting the public, meeting the business community and listening and learning.
“It’s important to me to really understand the values of the residents and business owners,” Amidei said. “I want to ensure that the quality-of-life Forest Park citizens have enjoyed continues.”
Amidei is married with two sons, aged 14 and 11. His family lives in Mundelein. His boys have been involved in Little League and baseball for years, and Amidei said he likes to compare the metaphor of youth sports, which helps build relationships among children and parents, to working together on a greater level to build a strong community.