Updates

  • 05/18/18 Peace Officers and Summer Reading Program

    One of the most important measurements of a community’s success is their crime rate. Rightly or wrongly, the responsibility for crime rates often falls in the laps of our nation’s police departments. Our policemen and policewomen patrol a Thin Blue Line to serve and protect us.

    Law enforcement has evolved greatly over the centuries. Starting with volunteer watchmen and part-time constabulary, policing was not centralized into civil police departments until the mid-nineteenth century. According to Eastern Kentucky University Criminal Justice Professor Dr. Gary Potter, Boston organized the first full-time police force in 1838, and was followed by New York City in 1845 and Chicago in 1851.

  • 05/11/18 - Let's Honor Those Who Make a Difference

    In 1998, James Hunter wrote a book called The Servant: A Simple Story About the True Essence of Leadership. With over 3 million copies in print, The Servant is an excellent book on leadership. Hunter writes, “Leadership is not about personality, possessions, or charisma, but all about who you are as a person. I used to believe that leadership was about style but now I know that leadership is about substance, namely character… Thoughts become actions, actions become habits, habits become our character, and our character becomes our destiny.”

    Speaking of character, the City of Freeport Fire Department has had 3 notable retirements recently, Battalion Chief Brian Bruce, Fire Inspector, Robert Bush and next week Deputy Chief Robin Gorsline. In addition Public Works Director Tom Dole also has retired. They have all served Freeport with distinction for over 30 years, and Tom Dole over 35 years. I had the privilege of joining Inspector...

  • 05/04/18 - Small Business Week

    I agree with Bern Williams who wrote, “The day the Lord created hope was probably the same day he created Spring.” I definitely hope that the teasing is over and spring has finally sprung. The sun is shining and the temperatures are finally on the rise. It can be argued that the sun is shining on taxpayers because the Illinois House of Representatives has been in recess this past week. I pray our luck holds when the House reconvenes May 8th.

    There are two important noteworthy national events going on this week that have been on my mind. April 29th through May 5th is Small Business Week. Most of you may know that I am currently involved in the operations of 21 small businesses employing hundreds in Northern Illinois so this week is very important. And this Saturday marks the 144th Kentucky Derby.

  • 04/20/18 - Common Sense

    This last week in Springfield has me thinking about common sense more and more. Democrats on the Judiciary Committee have run roughshod over what I believe are common sense solutions. It certainly seems that common sense isn’t so common, and I began to wonder how the term originated.
    Common sense made its first appearance in the book De Anima (Of the Soul), written by famed Greek philosopher Aristotle in 350 B.C. He described common sense more as a sense of common things and also as the place where our consciousness comes from because, “it makes us aware of having sensations at all.”
  • 04/13/18 - Baseball Opening Day

    President Eisenhower said, “Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you’re a thousand miles from the corn field.” Future Farmers of America is teaching tens of thousands of students across our country, including hundreds right here in Northwest Illinois, leadership skills while providing insight into “career success through agricultural education.”

    Our FFA students have done us proud this year at the state competition. Congratulations to the Eastland FFA members who were selected as Illinois State FFA Proficiency Winners late last month. Eastland student, Bradley Johnson, was a state winner in Beef Production Placement. Emily Denekas earned the distinction for Home and Community Development. Payton Erbsen was a State winner in Forage Production, and Delana Erbsen was named the State Star Discovery Farmer. Connor Erbsen was interviewed as a State Finalist for Star Farmer.

  • 03/30/18 - An Easter Story

    The Easter Holiday is upon us. Families throughout Northern Illinois are taking children on Easter egg hunts as adults are wrapping up their Lenten commitments.  Beautiful dresses and handsome suits will fill church aisles this Sunday, as countless hams roast slowly in the oven for family dinners.  Easter is a time of hope, rebirth, and redemption.

    Easter has typically been the milder holiday, sandwiched as it is between New Year’s and Independence Day, both raucous affairs in their own right. However, like Christmas, Easter did have a movie named after it, Easter Parade.  An exchange between the hero, Don, and the heroine, Hannah, is particularly appropriate.  When talking about Don’s inviting her to perform with him, Hannah says, “No, I mean it. You're the most wonderful dancer I've ever seen.  You could get anyone to dance with you.  You could get the very best.” Don replies, “I don't want the...

  • 03/23/2018 - Thank you for Voting!

    Abraham Lincoln once said, “If elected I will be thankful; if not, it will be all the same.” Illinois finished a spirited and intense primary election this past week.  The joys and stings are still fresh.  Last Tuesday was not the first such primary.

    How many of us remember the Republican primary of 1994? It was then that former Governor Jim Edgar was challenged in the primary by the late Jack Roesser.  Jack ran against Governor Edgar because he believed the Governor was going to raise our taxes and use more taxpayer dollars to fund abortion.

    How about the Republican Senate primary in 1998? Governor Edgar endorsed Loleta Didrickson who was challenged by Illinois State Senator Peter Fitzgerald in the race to see who would run against Senator Carol Moseley Braun that November.  Against all odds, the challenger Fitzgerald won.

  • 03/16/18 Column

    Congratulations to the Winnebago Boys basketball team and Coach Murphy on finishing second in the Class 2A IHSA State Championship.  It was an exciting season and we are all proud of your achievement.  We look forward to next season for all of our area teams.

    This past week also saw the National School Walkout protest.  Some students in schools across the country walked out of their classrooms for 17 minutes to protest gun violence in honor of the 17 students who were tragically murdered at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida last month.  Other students and schools chose to address the issue in other ways.
  • 03-09-2018 Column

    Children are the world’s most valuable resource and its best hope for the future.

    John F. Kennedy

     

    Many of us know the story of Briar Rose, or as Walt Disney popularized it, Sleeping Beauty. For those who don’t, I will provide a brief synopsis. A King and Queen celebrate the birth of their only child. A curse is placed on the child by a malevolent being who was not invited to the celebration. The child is taken away from the danger to protect her. I won’t spoil the ending, but you get the drift.

     

    Fairy tales are full of heroes and villains, good versus evil. We teach children from an early age that there is right and wrong, good people and bad people. Children learn when they are young that good people are often protectors.

     

    Department of Children and Family Services...

  • Column 03-02-2018

    It was President Theodore Roosevelt who said, “Far and away the best prize that life has to offer is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.” Congratulations to the Stockton Girls Basketball team and Coach Timpe for finishing second in the IHSA Class 1A State Championship game this last week. Your hard work and determination are an inspiration to many throughout Northwest Illinois. The team finished their season 32-3.

    Last week was also National Future Farmers of America Week. Chapters throughout Northern Illinois were active celebrating the mission of the FFA and the impact it has on its members. The FFA is “committed to the individual student, providing a path to achievement in premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agriculture education.

    It is inspiring to see so many of our youth strive and succeed. They are our future, and that is why it is so important...

 
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