Education: Attended Princeton Elementary School and Princeton High School graduating in 1971. Attended and graduated from Police Training Institute at the University of Illinois. Attended and graduated from Northwest University School of Executive Management. Many other training classes in my 37-1/2 years of being a law enforcement officer.
Experience: My career began in 1974 as deputy sheriff until July 1976 when I began a 36-year career with Princeton Police. I was a patrolman in Princeton until 1999 when I was promoted to deputy chief, a position I held until my retirement (2012). As an administrator for 13 years I was responsible for the day to day operations of the department along with purchasing equipment for the officers, purchasing the police vehicles/equipment to be installed in them, scheduled training, payroll and work schedules and the I-80 Drug Interdiction Unit. I also assisted in budget preparation and writing various polices/city ordinances and grant writing for the police.
What are your top three priorities?
1. My first priority is the safety of all of the citizens of Bureau County. You, the citizens, have placed your trust and safety and moreover the safety of your family in our hands, and that is a trust that we will not take lightly. The Bureau County Sheriff’s Department will provide each and every citizen with the best possible protection and service while ensuring you and your family will have a safe environment in which to live. The sheriff’s department will be a proactive, not a reactive type of police department. Preparation and training for any type of incident that may arise in this county is imperative.
2. My second priority is to bring back the “old school” type of law enforcement officer. I am a firm believer you have to give back to the community that you serve. You must be highly visible to the citizens of Bureau County and let them know you are there to serve them. Deputies will go to small towns and villages where there are no or only part time police and exit their patrol cars and walk the businesses and talk with the people. We have to build a bond of trust and recognition with the public we serve. The sheriff’s department must keep the needs and safety of the public first and foremost.
3. Increase rural patrol and continue to combat the drug problems we face each and every day. We all realize this is not Cook County, but on the other hand, this is not Mayberry either. Bureau County is primarily an agricultural county, and the deputies need to be and will be concentrating more patrol on the rural roads and small villages. We are very fortunate to have a deputy as part of TRIDENT drug enforcement, and we will continue to combat the drugs through visibility, patrol and investigations. I also plan on implementing a Neighborhood Watch program in the smaller communities in Bureau County. You don’t have to leave your name when you call in any type of report; all we want is the information, so we can better serve you. This is a combined effort between your sheriff’s department and you.
How do you describe yourself to voters: Very approachable and caring for your problems and concerns. The reason for being a police officer is not to be able to wear a uniform, gun and badge. It is to do a service for the community that you represent. In this case, it is the population of Bureau County. Should I be elected sheriff of Bureau County, your problems are my problems, and I care about the safety and well-being of you and your family. I would describe myself as well trained in being an administrator and having the ability to run a police department.
Why should voters cast their votes for you: Let’s start out with my 37-1/2 years of law enforcement experience. We all know the sheriff is an administrator, and for 13 years that was exactly what I did. I was also the acting chief of police for Princeton while the chief was deployed on military service. I have prepared budgets and worked with council forms of governments. I know as well as all of you that times are very difficult, and you have to know how to work within a budget and prepare a budget. You have to know how to schedule deputies to maximize the best amount of patrol and protection for the public without increasing taxes, and that is what I have done. Voters should cast their votes for me because I will be your sheriff; I will be your neighbor; I will be your friend because I am not just a police officer.