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On the Ballot: Candidates and Propositions

In anticipation of the April 7 [now June 2] municipal election, St. Charles County candidates, in contested races only, were invited to answer the following questions:

1. What are your priorities if elected? 2. What are your qualifications for holding public office?

Mid Rivers Newsmagazine has not verified and does not endorse the statements made by the candidates. Candidates in all races are listed in ballot order; incumbents are identified with an asterisk after their name.

Polling places and special precautions: Many polling places have changed to allow for improved social distancing. If you are in doubt of where to vote and what precautions are being taken, visit sccmo.org/410/Election-Authority to learn what you need to know before June 2.

COTTLEVILLE

  • Ward 1: Marie Mannino*
  • Ward 2: Donald Buchheit*

DARDENNE PRAIRIE

  • Ward 1: Dave Wandling*
  • Ward 2: Justin Ungerboeck*
  • Ward: 3 Dan Koch*

O’FALLON

  • Ward 1: Arnie C. “AC” Dienoff

1. I will provide much needed leadership by making correct decisions, always; putting people first by advocating for O’Fallon residents and restoring honesty, accountability and common sense responsibility to the city council/administration and every taxpayer. My priorities include balanced budgets, audits and no tax increases. A “watchdog ,” I will identify all waste. I am in favor of community-based policing, DWI enforcement with “no tolerance,” a pay raise for patrol officers, needed economic development and annexation for growth.

2. I feel called to serve the 19,000 citizens of Ward 1. I have been at all City Council meetings for the past 10 years. I bring a diverse, vast knowledge and keen skills that will be an immediate asset and will be a vital team player as a councilman. I am community, civic-minded and talented; college educated in business administration/management; have worked or been appointed at the municipal, township, county and state levels; and have managed multi-million dollar organizations.

  • Ward 1: Mike Garman

1. My top three priorities include a property tax rollback for seniors to prevent them from losing their homes. Ten-year freeze on property taxes for new purchases. Senior assistance for co-pays for primary care physicians and prescriptions covered by Medicare. Senior and child daycare facilities run by healthcare wellness professionals and child development professionals.

2. I am a former 6th District director of the St. Charles County Ambulance District that helped to achieve a $110 million balanced budget for 2006-2010. I have a Bachelor of Arts in health management from Lindenwood University and 40 years in the management or clinical side of healthcare.

  • Ward 1: Mike Schneider

1. My top priorities if elected are to help redevelop Ward 1 with a neo-fashion based on the charm and character of the past.

2. My qualifications for office are being the third generation builder/developer of the original Schneider Construction in North O’Fallon.

  • Ward 1: Dave Hinman*

1. I have been in the customer service business my entire adult life. I enjoy serving the public and helping in my community. My priorities if elected include public safety: continuing to provide training and resources to stay one of the safest cities in Missouri. Downtown revitalization: Growing our downtown area by adding additional restaurants, bars, shopping areas and a grocery. Infrastructure improvements: continue to repair streets and sidewalks, replace aging water lines and construct walking and biking trails.

2. I am the current councilman for Ward 1 [2014-present]. I am experienced and involved. It’s been my pleasure representing the residents of Ward 1 for the past six years. Also, working at QT, managing a large business has given me an opportunity to work with budgets, staffing and give great customer service. I have learned to be fiscally conservative and budget minded. I appreciate the opportunity to continue serving you as councilman for Ward 1.

  • Ward 1: Chris Horvath

1. My top priorities if elected include achieving fiscal responsibility and controlling city spending; limit wasteful spending so those resources can be put toward police, parks, streets, etc. I want to prevent MoDOT from using eminent domain against city residents. I will work toward securing a supermarket on the north side of O’Fallon; responsible development that includes limiting development that will reduce property values; and encouraging businesses to come to O’Fallon.

2. Having worked at the city of O’Fallon, I have unique qualifications no one else running has. I am a former senior project manager for the city, who was in charge of capital improvements and managing employees for my division as well as developing the budget for my division. I know how the city works and where the wasteful spending can be cut! Additionally, I am a 15-year resident, Elks Lodge member, Scout Master.

  • Ward 2: Lisa Thompson
  • Ward 3: Nathan Bibb*
  • Ward 4: Jeff Kuehn*

1. My top priorities as councilman are to try and balance spending in such a way to ensure the city’s infrastructure is properly cared for and maintained. To ensure that our city police department continues to have the tools they need to maintain the safe community that O’Fallon is. Above all else, I want to make sure that the residents of this fine city continue to be represented with their needs over any special interests.

2. My qualifications include 30 years experience in engineering and construction, my ability to relate to our residents and remain accessible and available to them, and my 24 years experience as an O’Fallon resident, a councilman and an active community volunteer.

  • Ward 4 : James Donald Quinn

Candidate did not respond by press time.

  • Ward 5: Mike Pheney*

1. My top three priorities are assisting our seniors citizens to enjoy the highest possible quality of life through programs such as meals on wheels, parks and recreation offering, etc.; revitalizing downtown and attracting a grocery store; upgrading our law-enforcement technology and adding police officers; and repairing the streets.

2. I am qualified to continue service in this office as I have been a councilman for O’Fallon for 10 years including two years as president pro tempore. I have amassed a great deal of knowledge of our city operations. I fully understand what is needed to bring businesses to O’Fallon and will work tirelessly to revitalize downtown.

  • Ward 5: Wendy Prakop

1. My top priorities if elected are: advocating for sustainability awareness with emphasis on the 3R’s of the waste management process; provide public transportation along the Main Street and Hwy. K corridors; utilize vacant buildings before building new structures.

2. I feel I am qualified to hold a public office because I served on O’Fallon’s Advisory Green Council as chairman for 12 years, served on the 2008 Comprehensive Plan Committee, received the 2006 Volunteer of the Year award and received the Smokefree Leadership Award from Tobacco Free Missouri as an advocate to pass a proposition for a smoke-free O’Fallon.

  • Ward 5: Katie Gatewood

Candidate did not respond by press time.

ST. PETERS

  • Mayor: Leonard B. “Len” Pagano*
  • Ward 1: John “Rocky” Reitmeyer*
  • Ward 2: Gregg Steven Sartorius

1. The city of St. Peters is a great place to live, work and play. Therefore, my top priority is to maintain or improve the amenities, services and safety in the city for its residents and businesses. To accomplish this objective, we need to draw more viable businesses to our city in order to maintain and grow our tax base. There is still space in the 370 Business Park and throughout the city for this growth.

2. I am a retired school administrator with five college degrees. I have served on a variety of boards and commissions in St. Peters since 1996, been a trustee for my neighborhood for over 20 years, and remain up-to-date on current issues and projects going on in the city. With the continued support of Mayor Len Pagano, the Board of Alderman and city staff, we can continue to achieve great things for our city.

  • Ward 2: Kashfia M. Rahman

1. My top priorities are keeping our streets safe; working with homeowner associations and other communities for neighborhood watch programs as well as ensuring the safety of our young ones in the street. I am committed to the further beautification of our roads and parks and involving our younger generation within programs to help our neighborhoods and older generations.

2. I have held several executive offices with our school system. By trade, I manage portfolios and projects. I am involved in subdivision and home owner association events, now and throughout previous years. I am involved in community outreaches and giving back to our neighbors, schools and environment.

  • Ward 3: Melissa Renee Reimer*
  • Ward 4: Patrick A Barclay*

WELDON SPRING

  • Ward 1: Andy Clutter*
  • Ward 2: Don Schwaab*
  • Ward 3: Phil Martiszus*

FORT ZUMWALT – Board of Directors

  • Arnie C. “AC” Dienoff

1. I will be a “watchdog” of all district operations. I will restore and instill total accountability, responsibility, integrity, full transparency and common sense decision making. I will increase test scores, reduce classroom student/teacher ratio, support character and STEM education, mandate highly qualified teachers, increase teacher professional development, improve school safety and security, develop a stern policy for disruptive students, support additional technology and cutting edge resources, cut all waste and mandate an $280 million annual balanced budget.

2. I am civic-minded, talented and educated. I am an advocate of students. I have a total commitment for students and their education. I desire to serve the public and improve services and programs that are offered. The strength of the community starts with the education of its treasure, its children. I am full of honesty, passion and vision, wanting to be a team player on the board. My talents, tenacity and assets are to serve residents.

  • Craig Stephen Moore*

1. My top three priorities for the Fort Zumwalt School District are the safety of students and staff, responsible spending and quality of education.

2. I am a parent and resident with children in the Fort Zumwalt School District and have served the community as a school board member for over three years from 2017 to present. I’m a member of the Missouri School Board Association and have attended training events throughout the state. As this is a voluntary position, it is very fulfilling and an honor to serve the students, employees and citizens of our community.

  • John A. Callahan*

1. My priorities are to provide a safe, secure and healthy educational environment for our children, teachers and staff; to continue to inform our legislature of the cost and labor impact of unfunded mandates.

2. I have a Bachelor of Science degree in education from the University of Missouri-St. Louis and am an incumbent member of the Fort Zumwalt school board.

  • Erica Powers*

1. My top priorities are to provide solutions and support for staff and students in the classroom, to manage classroom disturbances, support social-emotional needs and mental health. Second, to continue to advance our programs and training offerings for students to be successful out of high school. Lastly, to prepare a new strategic plan to support the vision of our district while ensuring continuous improvement to board effectiveness.

2. I value education and understand the issues facing our district from a variety of perspectives. My educational background, professional experiences, experiences working as a current Board of Education member, along with my community engagement adds value to the board improving upon existing platforms and working effectively with all stakeholders to serve our community.

  • Gabriel R. Helms

1. My priorities are to increase the district’s special education resources/services, review current protocols to find new techniques and strategies to service all students, no matter how minor or severe the students’ needs. Reassess the amount of resources [paraprofessionals, mental health resources, etc.) that are available to district staff. The better our staff is supported, the better they can support our children.

  • Scott Alan Grasser

Candidate did not respond by press time.

FRANCIS HOWELL – Board of Directors

  • Mike Sommer

1. My top three priorities include continued student success, both in and out of the classroom; using my previous Board of Education experience to assist our new superintendent who will be starting on July 1; using my financial experience as a CPA to assist the Francis Howell School District through the many potential construction projects that are on the horizon.

2. My experiences include 35 years as an accountant, including being a licensed CPA. Additionally, I have a lifetime teaching certificate. As a parent and as a taxpayer in the district for over 17 years, I have a continued and vested interest in the future success of the Francis Howell School District. I believe that my background will help ensure that well-informed decisions are made, and that all tax dollars are spent wisely.

  • Mary Lange*

1.My priorities are to ensure that our students and staff have the resources necessary to keep Francis Howell a top-tier district. Be a voice for our children and community, making sure that the children remain the main priority. Make certain that our tax dollars are spent in the most sensible, wise way.

2. As a parent to a freshman in high school and a currently sixth-grade child, I am highly invested in keeping the district top-performing. I am passionate, motivated and have the courage to stand up for what is right. I have been actively involved in the community in many ways and a positive voice for our children, schools and community.

  • Patrick Lane*

1. My priorities are to continue to provide our children with academic rigor and educational excellence. Maintain a balanced budget and the need for additional revenue. Update and maintain district facilities.

2. As a lifelong educator, I feel I can bring a strong background in teaching and learning. My experiences will help guide me in making decisions that would impact student learning, provide understanding of student and staff rights, and knowledge of state and federal guidelines to ensure our district is doing its very best in maintaining a strong educational community.

  • Douglas Ziegemeier

1. My top priorities are student safety, educational excellence and fiscally responsibility. I will ensure we are developing and enforcing policies designed to create safe environments conducive to learning for all students. Additionally, I will work to boost the financial position of the Francis Howell School District in order to continue attracting and retaining highly qualified teachers. My goal is to ensure our community schools remain among the best in the state of Missouri.

2. As a business owner, I am responsible for driving revenues and managing expenses all while putting my customer’s needs first. Also, having been a former law enforcement and a current adjunct professor, I understand what drives professionals looking to serve their community. Further, as a father of three students in the district, I share the same concerns of all parents looking to provide their children with the foundational skills needed to achieve success as adults.

  • Peggy Sherwin

Candidate did not respond by press time.

O’FALLON FIRE DISTRICT – Board of Directors

  • Matt Simmons*

1. My top priorities are to maintain fiscal responsibility, provide the district with the most updated training and equipment, and implement sound district policy and procedures.

2. I have over 15 years of public service dealing with budgets, construction projects, and the rules of governing public entities.

  • Arnie C. “AC” Dienoff

1. My top priorities are to restore honesty, accountability and common sense responsibility to every taxpayer. Keeping an equal balance between the residents/taxpayers and the employee union. Keeping firefighters safe by upgrading equipment. Releasing/disclosing public documents, information and finances by complying with Missouri’s Sunshine Law. Seeking a ballot vote for expanding the board to five directors. I will seek additional fire prevention, lowering the district’s Insurance Standards

Organization rating, resulting in saving for homeowners.

2. I am community, civic-minded and talented. I have a college education in business administration/management. I have been appointed to several positions of government. I have managed multi-million dollar organizations, saving taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars. I am a problem solver and negotiator with a keen tenacity for communications and customer service. I will always seek input through public hearings, include/inform the public through the district’s website/board meetings and mandate taxpayers retain control at all times.

ST. CHARLES COUNTY AMBULANCE DISTRICT

  • District 5: Abigail Nilson*

Candidate did not respond by press time.

  • District 5: Glen H. Taylor

Candidate did not respond by press time.

ST. CHARLES COMMUNITY COLLEGE – Board of Trustees

  • Arnie C. “AC” Dienoff

1. The college is vital to the economic growth of the entire county. My priorities are the hiring of college employees with a fair contract. I will ensure total accountability for every program, department and employee and ensure spending practice transparency. I will increase technology and security; ensure that the results of the state audit will be fully corrected and implemented; and ensure money is spent wisely on the new School of Culinary, Nursing and Trades building.

2. I feel the calling and need to serve our Community College District. I bring a diverse, vast knowledge and keen skills that will be an immediate asset as a trustee. I am community, civic-minded and talented, college educated in business administration/management. I have worked or been appointed at the municipal, township, county and state levels. I have managed multi-million dollar organizations, saving taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars. I will make sure citizens are the first priority and focus.

  • Shirley Lohmar*

1. My priorities include student success: retention and completion. We have made significant progress in this area over the past few years, but we need to continue to redesign programs and program delivery to achieve greater success. We need to be responsible stewards of financial resources. As trustees, we have helped set budget priorities and made data informed decisions. We need to continue to assess and develop programs that meet the educational and workforce needs of the community.

2. I have served on the board of trustees for St. Charles Community College the past four years, holding positions as treasurer and vice president. My background as an educator and administrator in St. Charles County helps me to better understand the various issues faced by SCC. We have made significant progress elevating SCC to one of the most respected, innovative community colleges in the state of Missouri. I believe this is a valuable experience that will continue to move the college forward.

  • Pamela S. Cilek*

1. My priorities are to provide quality and affordable education, be fiscally responsible in supervising the college’s future growth and to add new programs that help address the county’s current job needs.

2. I am a retired educator, who, having taught at St. Charles Community College for 25 years, has witnessed its growth. I am familiar with post secondary education; I also taught at St. Louis Community College, University of Missouri-St. Louis and Lindenwood University. My bachelor’s degree is from Western Illinois University in speech and theatre; I have a master’s of fine arts in theatre from Lindenwood University.

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