DuPage County Forest Preserve District 4
(Vote for 1)The Forest Preserve District is governed by a seven-member Board of Commissioners, which translates the open-space needs of county residents into ordinances designed to protect and enhance natural areas and support general operations.DuPage County contains six districts. Voters elect one commissioner from the district in which they live. The seventh member — the president — is elected by the county at large by popular vote. [source: https://www.dupageforest.org/our-board/board-commissioners]Salary: $75,000, PresidentSalary: $50,000, CommissionerSource: https://www.dupageforest.org/hubfs/About/Documents/Departments/2021-03-08-Elected-Officials-Compensation.pdf
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What qualifications do you bring to the office?
What is a major challenge facing your constituents and how will you address it?
What are the major goals you hope to achieve should you be elected to office?
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An incumbent on the Board of Commissioners, I have a background that makes me a natural for this position. I am a 32-year resident of DuPage County. I have an engineering degree, and a Masters in Environmental Science. I have worked for state and federal agencies implementing Clean Air Act programs, and have led multi-disciplinary field teams. My professional work required me to work on international projects, as well as complex community environmental projects that required coordination with civic groups and municipal and county level governments. In short, I have extensive experience in all levels of government. I have volunteered for Sierra Club, the DuPage Clean Energy Coalition, the Illinois Solar Energy Association, as well as the Forest Preserve District. I worked on special environmental projects at SCARCE for 2 years. I was also an environmental commissioner for the Village of Glen Ellyn for 12 years.
The pandemic has led to a substantial increase in public demand for the services that the Forest Preserve District offers. I believe the District is up to the challenge. My job is to assure that my constituents have access to our natural areas to have positive experiences as they recreate and enjoy nature. This need must be balanced with the need to preserve and restore natural areas, and to assure positive educational opportunities for visitors. This requires me to work with and to support our professional staff to find ways to support nature and to maximize services without increasing taxes. I support strong public engagement so that the users have some say in the planning process for what services and experiences should be provided by the District.
I am advocating for a cost-effective transition to renewable energy, preservation of our green space, and trails to access and enjoy nature. I will prioritize restoration and maintenance of natural areas that have been compromised by invasive plants, making these areas less resilient to climate change. As the District transitions to clean energy, I will monitor the construction of the newly-approved wildlife clinic at the Willowbrook Wildlife Center to assure that will have “net zero” energy use while providing world-class animal rehabilitation and visitor experiences. I will push for trail connections where needed, and will support the construction of the East Branch DuPage River Trail. Finally, I will support the District reviewing its operations to attain high operational efficiencies and minimal environmental impacts.
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