Arlington Heights Trustee Thomas Hayes announced Monday he will run for village president in the 2013 municipal election, seeking to replace longtime leader Arlene Mulder who last week said she will retire at the end of her term.
Hayes was elected to the village board in 1991 and has served as the president pro tem for the past 13 years, filling in for Mulder at village board meetings and other events when necessary.
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"After much discussion with, and encouragement from, family, friends and colleagues over the past few days, I have decided to announce my candidacy for Arlington Heights Village President in the April 9, 2013 election," Hayes said in his official announcement. "With Mayor Mulder's retirement after 20 years as village president, the community will need a steady hand at the helm as it transitions to new leadership."
Hayes said he has spoken with fellow village trustees but does not know of any others planning to seek Mulder's post. Trustees Thomas Glasgow, Joseph Farwell and Mike Sidor told the Daily Herald they would not be running for village president.
Glasgow said it will be difficult for anyone to follow in Mulder's footsteps, especially after she made the village president position almost like a full-time job, but he's hoping for a smooth transition to new leadership next year.
"I think we are very lucky to have nine people on the village board committed to the community for the right reasons," Glasgow said.
Mulder was elected to the village board the same year as Hayes, in 1991, and has said she will focus on her next seven months as mayor before looking ahead.
Hayes has lived in Arlington Heights for almost 30 years and been a lawyer in Chicago since 1986. He's a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, and retired from the Army as a lieutenant colonel in 2001 after more than two decades of service on active and reserve duty.
"My goal is to maintain the high quality of life that our residents and business community have enjoyed over the past 20 years," Hayes said. "I believe that I can provide the necessary experience and commitment to ensuring that the quality of life in Arlington Heights remains second to none."