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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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BioQ&A

 

Bio

City: Naperville

Website: Candidate did not respond.

Twitter: @suzannehartwillco

Facebook: facebook.com/hartmaherwillcountyboard

Office sought:

Will County board District 11

Age: 52

Family: Husband: Leo

Daughters: Megan, Gabrielle, Julia

Occupation: Running Coach

Education: Associate's Degree from Southeastern University

Civic involvement: Animal activist, Friends of Problem Solving Courts Board, Board member of Illinois Crime Commission, Program Director and Coach Galloway Marathon, Relay for life, Navy Mom, past member of Neuqua Valley Boosters, past PTA and PTSA member, GOP Precinct Committeewoman, Naperville Ribfest volunteer, past member of Naperville Junior Women's Club, Will County ETSB (911 Board),

Elected offices held: Will County Board Member District 11

Forest Preserve of Will County President

Naperville Park District Commissioner

Naperville Park District President

Wheatland Township Republican Precinct Committeeman

Questions & Answers

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

I'm running for Will County Board District 11 and Commissioner of Forest Preserve for the simple reason that I like being the voice of the people and getting things done, and my past history has reflected this endeavor. My only motivation is to help the people of District 11. I don't run on issues I run on integrity.

If you are an incumbent, describe your main contributions. Tell us of any important initiatives you've led. If you are a challenger, what would you bring to the board and what would your priority be?

First and foremost, I am proud to be the first women president of the Will County Forest Preserve, and in this position, I was able to implement three instrumental trail connections in Whalen Lake:

1. Bolingbrook Park District Hidden Lake

2. Naperville Park District Knoch Knolls

3. DuPage Forest Preserve

In addition, as Chairwoman of the Will County Board Legislative Committee, I worked closely with Will County State's Attorney, Jim Glasgow to initiate legislation to end the sale of puppy mill dogs, cats and bunnies in pet stores. And these are just a few examples of the contributions I have made to the community.

What are the county's open space needs and how should this board address them?

The Forest Preserve has made great strides in protecting 22,000 acres of critical natural areas and open space in the recent past. Our focus in the near future should be on connecting greenways, expanding existing preserves and removing inholdings on existing preserves.

Describe your position regarding the balance between county spending and revenues as it exists today, then describe the chief threats you see looming in the future and how the county should deal with them.

Rising costs are always an issue, and in the last several years we have worked toward becoming more efficient with less personal in every department. We need to continue to streamline this within the County as there are always outside forces that threaten our efforts.

How do you rate the county government on transparency and the public's access to records? If you consider it adequate, please explain why. If you think improvements are needed, please describe them and why they are important.

Transparency in government is of the utmost concern to the constituents of Will County. As a tax-paying citizen, you have the legal right to request access to public records. The majority of our financial records is posted online on the website under the auditors office, and any additional information is available just by asking the department.

What other issues, if any, are important to you as a candidate for this office?

I want to continue representing Will County District 11, as we have been role models by reducing taxes, maintaining a balanced budget, eliminating pensions, and boosting economic growth.

Please name one current leader who most inspires you.

Jim Moustis, Frankfort-R, speaker of the Will County Board, for giving me a leader I can look up to.

What is the biggest lesson you learned at home growing up?

As the youngest of six children, I learned how to have a strong voice and how to make it be heard.

If life gave you one do-over, what would you spend it on?

I would give that do-over to someone else because I can't think of a single thing I'd change in my life.

What was your favorite subject in school and how did it help you in later life?

I had the best Physical Education teacher who taught how to love running and now I get to teach others how to love it.

If you could give your children only one piece of advice, what would it be?

Get involved in your community and find something that matters to you and run with it.