Sullivan to leave political office, launch lobbying business
Already planning to step down from the state House, Mundelein Republican Ed Sullivan Jr. on Thursday announced he'll leave his post as Fremont Township's assessor when his term ends next year.
Sullivan said he wants to spend more time with his family. But he also revealed he's launched a lobbying business, EOSullivan Consulting.
"I have been in public service for half my life," Sullivan, 47, told the Daily Herald. "It is time to go into the private sector and have others step up and serve our community through elective office."
Sullivan will finish his current term as assessor, which ends in December 2017. The seat is up in the spring 2017 election.
His term as the state representative for the 51st District ends in January 2017.
As assessor, Sullivan determined the market value of properties in the township so taxes could be set. An outspoken fiscal conservative, Sullivan said he worked to make the taxation process "more transparent and equitable."
In his new role as a lobbyist, he said he will represent taxpayers "in an attempt to control their spiraling property taxes."
To avoid any conflicts of interest, Sullivan said he won't start work as a lobbyist until after he leaves the state House and won't accept individual taxpayers as clients until he's done as assessor.
Lake County Treasurer David Stolman has worked with Sullivan in both of his political roles for years. Stolman called Sullivan "an honest, trustworthy, intelligent and compassionate public servant."
"His background as assessor helped him immensely in his position as state representative," said Stolman, a Buffalo Grove Republican. "He was the 'go to person' whenever a question arose regarding tax legislation."
Sullivan entered political life in 1992 as an aide to then-U.S. Rep. Phil Crane of Wauconda.
Sullivan first was elected township assessor in 1993 and was re-elected five times.
He won a seat in the state House in 2002 and is finishing his seventh term.
In that legislative role, Sullivan gained attention in 2013 by breaking with the Republican Party stance and supporting Illinois' same-sex marriage law. He was one of only three Republicans in the House to back the controversial measure, which narrowly passed.
His political career survived public protests over that vote. He also withstood criticism after a 2004 drunken driving conviction in Michigan.
Republican Nick Sauer, a Lake County Board member from North Barrington, is running unopposed to replace Sullivan in the House.
People interested in running for Fremont Township assessor in the April 2017 election can begin circulating candidate petitions now. Nominating petitions are available at the township office, 22376 W. Erhart Road near Mundelein, and must be filed in mid-December.