Sadly, my efforts to recruit a 2021 Geneva mayoral candidate, as well as several of the aldermanic variety, aren’t going nearly as well as I’d hoped. Despite some serious financial backers, it would seem the insidious issue is, anyone harboring half-a-brain, a capacity to consider tomorrow, and a reasonable moral mooring is far too prudent to run for a job that requires a ton of time, pays virtually nothing, and generally solicits a slew of criticism.
Another difficult hurdle in this regard is, while our local elected officials have a far great impact on our wallets and well-being, we inexplicably prefer to focus on their statewide and national counterparts.
But I’m not ready to throw in the electoral towel quite yet! An outstanding five-tool Geneva First Ward candidate recently approached me, and I can’t tell you how excited I am about that campaign. Current alderman Mike Bruno, and his single-minded insistence on all things historical preservation, really needs to go.
“Jeff? I’ve heard of a five-tool baseball player before, but can you please explain a five-tool candidate?”
Absolutely! A five-tool candidate has:
- A great message
- And they play well with others
What that means is I’m still looking for:
- A Third Ward aldermanic candidate
- A Second Ward aldermanic candidate (only if Rich Marks doesn’t run again)
- A Fifth Ward aldermanic candidate
- A mayoral candidate.
- Two (and maybe three) non-union supported school board candidates
Rich! You need to get in touch with me sooner than later because you’ve clearly earned a fourth term if that’s your thought, and we certainly work well together campaign-wise.
Fourth Ward Alderman Jeanne McGowan also deserves a second term. I can’t remember enjoying a more effective collaboration with an elected official in getting things done. Though I’d certainly like to see some of her fiscally conservative tendencies surface, Jeanne is the reason I haven’t been writing about Geneva nearly as often these days.
If you can take care of something behind the scenes, it always works out better for everyone involved.
All that said, we do desperately need a new mayor and whomever that enterprising individual turns out to be needs to make their intentions known somewhat soon so perennial also-ran Tom Simonian doesn’t make it a three-way race which will assure Mayor Kevin Burns’ reelection.
Before you start running for the crawl space, I’m not talking about remaking Geneva in my image! Not even I would want that. But please note just how well so many of my former clients are doing:
- Aurora Mayor Richard Irvin certainly has that city humming along
- Kane County Sheriff Ron Hain is doing a great job and working quite well with Chairman Chris Lauzen
- Geneva’s own Rich Marks, the only alderman to survive the 2017 Simonian bloodbath, continues to be a city council voice of reason
- A brilliant and insightful D304 School Board member continues to serve with grace and distinction
Furthermore, I’m not nearly the only Genevan who believes we need:
- A more effective, responsive and far more principled Mayor
- A more independent City Council
- A new City Manager
- We don’t need an Assistant City Manager
- More respectful and responsive City employees
- A far more effective salting and snow removal effort
- Union contracts that reflect today’s realities
- A more fiscally conservative Mayor and City Council
- Real leadership in the face of a rapidly deteriorating Third Street business district
- And some immediate attention to our sewer and roadway infrastructure
If you’re interested in the municipal government challenge, it’s not all that difficult to get ahold of me. What’s in it for you? Quality candidates will receive:
- My considerable campaign managing services at no charge to them
- A copy of my new book ‘So You Want to Win a Local Election’
- Potential financing from Geneva Business owners desperate for change
- Ongoing counsel on how to navigate the vagaries of city government
- My eternal gratitude for making Geneva a better place
We all regularly engage in the tried and true national pastime of kvetching about our elected officials, but here’s an opportunity to actually do something about it. So, how about it Genevans?