Working for you, for a better community!
I am asking for your support! Jamie and I have resided for 9 years in Oak Forest with our 2 children, Ashlynn and Nathan. Buying our home in Oak Forest was an easy choice for us as we saw the opportunity to be a part of a wonderful community to live in and raise our children! I would like to be a part of our leadership to help grow our city and improve our community where needed, and I am asking for your support on April 6th!
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I am John Harris, and I’m running to be the 4th Ward Alderman in Oak Forest. I have lived in Oak Forest since 2012 with my wife, Jamie and 2 children Ashlynn and Nathan.
While living in Oak Forest, I have had many opportunities to be an active member in the community in many different ways. I feel each experience will assist me in properly performing the functions of an Alderman. I served as an Oak Forest Park District Commissioner, was on the Oak Forest City Citizens Advisory Committee at city hall, an active member of the Oak-Fest Committee, and also coached high school lacrosse for the District 228 boys’ lacrosse team. Some of my personal experiences include being elected as a union representative in the UAW, being an active referee in football and lacrosse in high school and college level which includes being a board member in Illinois’ only lacrosse officials association, GLLOA. The leadership necessary in all of these roles gives me the experience to represent the residents of the 4th Ward and be an efficient leader in the City of Oak Forest.
I am running for the position of 4th Ward Alderman because I feel my skills and experience would be an asset for Oak Forest residents. The office isn’t just about voting on ordinances and budgets as some may believe. The position has a responsibility to keep the residents informed and help when times of need arise. It is a position that requires an active individual that wants to be around people and to engage the public. It requires a commitment to be available to the residents. I believe I am the right person to be your voice as Alderman.
If elected, I will improve the communication between the city and the residents of the 4th ward with news and ask for feedback from the residents about thoughts and concerns they might have. I will accomplish this by publishing periodic newsletters throughout my time in office and utilizing social media and email for quicker communication when necessary. This will also include being visible and known at community events and in the neighborhoods so residents can approach and speak with their representative outside of meetings face to face. Being around the neighborhoods will allow me to review sidewalk/street/flooding issues directly and then pursue corrective actions available to fix concerns. Business is a major concern in our area and for too long we have watched business move to other cities around us over the years while bypassing Oak Forest as a city to set up shop. I will actively work with community development to seek out businesses and keep our present businesses as I help eliminate the open storefronts we currently have throughout the city.
I will work for the residents of the 4th Ward the way you deserve to be worked for. We have been left in the dark for so long that it is time we have someone in the office of Alderman that fights for the answers and communicates with you to shed a light onto city functions. I know that some ideas and plans will take time to accomplish, but I am optimistic that these are a path forward to help our community grow. Thank you for your support.
Get to know me!
I want to hear from you! While I will do my best to visit every door in the 4th Ward before the election on April 6th, there is still a chance I will miss meeting you. Please, reach out to me through email or the contact form and we can set up a time to meet or I can answer any questions you might have directly!
One of my many ideas include increasing communication to the residents of the 4th Ward through electronic means and also direct conversation. We have been left in the dark for the past 4 years. I pledge to change this through use of social media, email, periodic newsletters directly from me, and by being visible and known at community events and in the neighborhoods so the residents can approach face to face with their representative with thoughts and concerns. I will encourage communication as your Alderman. The best way to grow as a community is to get to know your neighbors and elected officials. Through these and other methods of communication I commit to have the conversation with the residents of the 4th Ward. I am looking for your support to help improve the direct communication from our Aldermans office to you, the resident.
In the past four years, we have seen so many events in Oak Forest including a major storm that brought a tornado to the city along with a significant number of power outages and a significant amount of damage. Civil unrest and protests over the past summer. Flooding that affects many of us every year like clockwork. Increased safety concerns and criminal mischief that has infected our city. Multiple significant snowfalls and many days of bitter cold that left many without power. And of course the pandemic. And all without a word from our Alderman about any of them. These are the times when leaders should be visible to help guide the residents. I have never been shy about having a conversation with my neighbors. This is a community and as a community we have to work together and help one another. We need someone that is willing to lead from the front when it comes to major issues in our city and in helping our residents in times of need with information and direction. I am asking for your support to allow me to be that leader.
We all have that rough pothole in our street. A sidewalk that is heaved. Or god forbid an issue of flooding. These are concerns that should be corrected for the safety, and sanity, of the residents. I strive to be the voice for the residents of the 4th Ward to pursue corrective actions that are available and utilize the resources the city has to fix concerns. I will look to communicate with our Public Works department, Cook County government agencies, and state level representatives to have our voices heard. While not all issues can be fixed easily or promptly, you deserve assistance to attempt to resolve these concerns when it comes to infrastructure around the 4th Ward and the City of Oak Forest. I am asking for your support to be your voice when it comes to infrastructure issues in the city.
Something needs to be done about the issue of vacant storefronts and city owned properties that are not earning taxes for the city. I will be seeking many different avenues to assist in getting these open storefronts filled with businesses. I will actively work with community development to seek out businesses and keep our present businesses as I help eliminate open storefronts we currently have throughout the city. We all know that Oak Forest has many fine qualities that make this community great. I am asking for your support in this election to be the face of the 4th Ward to get the word out that Oak Forest is a GREAT place to locate a business in.