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updated: 3/4/2011 7:21 AM

Donald Wisniewski: Candidate Profile

Bartlett fire protection district, Cook seat

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  • Donald Wisniewski, running for Bartlett fire protection district's Cook County seat

    Donald Wisniewski, running for Bartlett fire protection district's Cook County seat




Note: Answers provided have not been edited for grammar, misspellings or typos. In some instances, candidate claims that could not be immediately verified have been omitted.

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BioKey IssuesQ&A





Office sought: Bartlett fire protection district, Cook seat

Age: 50

Family: Married, 2 children

Occupation: Fire Officer (Lieutenant), Mt. Prospect Fire Department (25 years)

Education: ompleted Bachelor's program, SIU, Fire Science Management; (also working towards Masters degree in Fire Science Management); Certified Fire District Trustee, Illinois Fire Marshal & NIAFPD.

Civic involvement: Bartlett Fire Department 26 years (Firefighter-Deputy Chief), Bartlett Little League 8 years (Board of Directors & Coach)

Elected offices held: Trustee, Treasurer & President, Bartlett Fire District, 6 years

Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No.

Candidate's Key Issues

Key Issue 1

Provide for the welfare of the residents of the Bartlett Fire Protection District!

Key Issue 2

Continued, honest fiscal responsibility!

Key Issue 3

Keep politics out of the Fire District!

Questions & Answers

What makes you the best candidate for the job?

My core values are what I have to offer our residents; "Professionalism, Integrity & Experience, not politics". This is not just my campaign slogan but is who I truly am. I hold these principles honorably. My professionalism in dealing with the public we serve, my integrity in doing what's right & honest (not what's popular) and my experience of serving 26 years as a leader in the fire service. I don't buy into political games, tactics or shenanigans. Combine these traits with my education in Fire Service Management, Fire District Trustee training, solid moral ethics and my desire to serve our community shows who I really am and why I'm running for re-election to the Bartlett Fire District.

Why are you running for this office, whether for re-election or election the first time? Is there a particular issue that motivates you, and if so, what is it?

I'm very proud of the long standing tradition of quality and service provided by the Bartlett Fire District. My main priority will be to continue this tradition of excellence, to provide our residents with superior fire & EMS protection while keeping taxpayers expectations first & foremost. The Bartlett Fire Department has been a large part of my life for many years and I do have a vested interest in seeing it continue on the right path.

Talking with your friends and neighbors, what seems to be their biggest fire safety concern? Explain the concern as you see it, and discuss how you think it should be addressed.

The most predominant fire safety concern is that of appropriate responses. Given the facts that fire doubles in size every minute and brain damage occurs within 4-6 minutes without oxygen in a medical emergency, it's vitally important that these issues are predominant in our responses. It is the goal of the Bartlett Fire District that we get fully trained, fully equipped firefighter/paramedics to your door within 4 minutes. These standards are more than goals, they're life safety concerns, which we take very seriously. Each of our fire engines are Advanced Life Support units (which means that they carry the same equipment as an ambulance, staffed with paramedics). For fire responses, it's necessary to get fire equipment to the scene quickly, have appropriate staffing for fire rescue & suppression efforts, emphasized in our mission statement; to save lives and property.

In these tight economic times, budgets have to be prioritized. Where, if anywhere, could the current budget be trimmed, and conversely, are there areas the budget does not give enough money to?

The most talked about issue is that of taxes and how their tax dollars are being spent. In an age of political deceptions and untruthfulness, people don't trust politicians. I've been involved with the Bartlett Fire District for most of my career (26 years) where I've served our residents with integrity and professionalism.

As a Trustee for the past six years, I've continued that same instilled philosophy of public servitude in doing what's best for the district, setting exceptional (yet appropriate) levels of service and keeping a very watchful eye on spending and finances. I'm not a politician. I am a taxpayer of the district who has been given the opportunity as District Trustee/Treasurer to ensure proper spending and operating expenses; this is where my expertise in the fire service comes into play.

I have introduced ideas and resources to the department which greatly benefits our residents in the saving of revenues (prudent spending), sensible budgeting policies AND the creation of new revenue sources (Grants and secured investments). The Fire District budget has been scrutinized and trimmed for the past 5 years since I've been on the board… with my expertise in the fire service, I'm able to understand and question each line item or expenditure in the budget; this is who I am and what I've been doing as your Bartlett Fire District Trustee!

Would you support sharing/pooling resources (i.e. printing, vehicles) with other local governments (school districts, village, etc.)? If so, what areas would you consider combining or merging to save money or improve efficiency

Presently, the Bartlett Fire District does fully support the cooperation with other legitimate governmental agencies in our Mutual Aid & Automatic Aid agreements with surrounding fire departments; these agreements benefit our residents greatly in additional support.

The Fire District Board also worked with the Village of Bartlett in the building of our west side fire station (in 2008) to further provide appropriate protection and reduce response times to residents west of Route 59. In addition, we (present trustees, including myself) have hosted several intergovernmental meetings of all Bartlett taxing bodies to address issues and the sharing of resources to benefit our community as a whole. It's not only the responsible thing to do, it's the right thing to do.

With your blessings, support (and most importantly) your vote on April 5th, I can continue to serve as your advocate in the role of Trustee.