Political party: Democrat
Family: Wife Mary, children Michael, James and Bradley (deceased), six grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren.
Occupation: retired; worked for Heetco for 42 years
Political experience: Completing his third four-year term as alderman; appointed to replace Gary Sparks in 1992; ran unopposed in 1997 and 2005; defeated Republican Robert Anderson 672-252 in 2001; defeated Ronald Hinkamper 644-507 in 1993.
Other interests: Member of Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church and Fraternal Order of Eagles; worthy past president of the state of Illinois Eagles, now state secretary for all 68 Eagles clubs in state; past president of North Side Boat Club.
• Sidewalks. “Most of them are bricks, and they need to be replaced.”
• Streets. “This is the oldest ward in the city, and everything is old. We need a lot of stuff replaced. You can’t let it go downhill. I’ve spent a lof of ward money to keep this going. Last year, we spent $162,000 on repairs to streets, and we’ve got a lot of them earmarked in the next year. But they can’t be done until you get engineering done on it. It doesn’t happen overnight.”
• Accessibility. “I never forget to return a phone call. If you don’t call me, I don’t know what you want. I have my own cell phone, so if they call my house and I’m out doing something else, call me if you think it’s necessary to call me. That’s why I got it. I never forget to return a phone call. If you don’t return calls, it upsets people.”
On the future of hydroelectric in Quincy:
“It’s not going to happen overnight, but I’ve voted to get it this far. As far as the city of running a hydroelectric plant, I don’t think it’s necessary, but if we acquire the license, someone else can (run) it. This could take many, many years, and we need the dam repaired. (U.S. Rep. Phil) Hare said when he was here that he’s going to try to get it redone, but you know how that works.”
On how the city handled the firefighter controversy:
“I’ve been out talking with people, and only a very few people even mention it. Most of them have forgotten about it. It’s definitely not the first thing they bring up. They want to know if I’m going to fix their sidewalk or cut down that tree. When it first happened, as far as us alderman, we didn’t have any say. You have the city and the union and all that to work with. We only have a say when it’s time to pay the bills.”
The last word:
“I’ve lived in this ward for 58 years. Unless someone just moved in here, I probably know every family who lives here and their families who were here before them.”
For a preview of the 1st Ward race, click here.