Candidates in Feb. 27 primary election

(Click on the names to see unedited position papers from the candidates.)

For mayor

(Listed in the order their papers were received)

For city treasurer

For city clerk

For 1st Ward alderman

  • Benny Huskins Sr.

For 2nd Ward alderman

  • Verl Prather

For 3rd Ward alderman

  • David Armbrust

For 4th Ward alderman

  • Glenn Shelton

For 5th Ward alderman

  • Michael Montcalm

Mayoral candidates

The following position papers have been submitted by mayoral candidates. All candidates were contacted and asked to participate. The hope in providing this information via this format is that each candidate is able to express his/her positions that distinguish the individuals in their run for the office. Lincoln Daily News believes this format allows the candidates equal opportunity to state their platforms with minimal media bias.

All mayoral candidates are invited to submit for each of the following scheduled times:

Jan. 19, 20 

Feb. 2 & 3

Feb. 16 & 17 

Feb. 23 & 24

Personal introduction and general platform

Specific issues

More issues

Closing remarks

(Unedited position papers from the candidates)

Jason Harlow, candidate for mayor

Dear Fellow Citizens,

My name is Jason Harlow, and I would appreciate your vote on February 27, 2001.

I am 23 years old, and I have been self employed for over two years with a nationwide hot air balloon company. I started this company from scratch when I was 20 years old, and have since seen rapid growth.

I keep many animals, most of which are of the exotic type, enjoy music, and storm chasing.

I decided to run for mayor for a number of reasons. I have lived in Lincoln almost my entire life, and I am not pleased with watching a good town slowly lose everything that it once had.

Lincoln at one time had eight major employers, a bustling downtown, and a population of over 17,000 people. If you will reminisce with me for a moment, and go back 15 years, Lincoln was a striving community. We had much to offer residents, and tourists. But what happened ???

We are now down to only a small handful of major employers, a downtown with many vacant buildings, a crumbling road system, and leaders that do not seem to realize any of this.

Very recently, Lincoln has lost businesses, Staples, and Stage. What did the Ritter administration do to try and prevent this from happening ? Personally, I would have sat down with both management and asked them what is it that Lincoln would be able to offer them to stay. Perhaps there would have been nothing to change their decision to leave our city. But how would we know if we didn’t try?

Another issue that I feel needs addressed is west side fire protection. Lincoln Fire Department is an excellent department in terms of manpower and equipment, but in terms of location, they fail miserably. Currently, it takes approximately 3-8 minutes to reach a fire or accident scene west of College Street. In inclement weather, this time is increased further.

If Lincoln had a one or two truck station near Woodlawn and Lincoln Parkway, the response time would be minimal. The faster response time might make the difference in saving someone’s life.

However, have any of my opponents shown concern for families and businesses on the west side of Lincoln?

Another issue I feel needs addressed in Lincoln, is the growing drug problem. Day after day, the police records show many arrests on drug charges. I would like to drive drugs out of Lincoln, once and for all by proposing strict fines and imprisonment for those who choose to break the drug laws.

The money acquired from these drug users would be used to fund festivals, street repairs, attract new business, and help rejuvenate downtown. There would also be a strict policy for repayment of these fines, to insure that these criminals are punished.

I would also like the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of Lincoln’s youth. At this time, there is no place in which they can gather at that is safe, and secure. If we do not take care of our youth now, they will simply leave town when they are older, and Lincoln will not have the benefit of that population in the future.

The rising costs of gasoline, and heating fuels has me very concerned. It is simply amazing to me, that towns all around us have cheaper gasoline. I would form a committee to investigate why this is the way that it is. Lincolnites should not be forced to pay any prices higher than the surrounding communities.

Recently while visiting some residents, two of the main concerns they voiced were water bills, and property taxes. There are very easy ways to remedy both of these concerns.

I feel the city government should once again take control over our water works system, and bring relief to these skyrocketing prices for a natural resource such as water.

The city could also cut property taxes by 1 to 2 %, and use the income from my drug enforcement policy to more than offset the revenue loss. I realize that 1 to 2 % is not a drastic amount of money, but any relief would be helpful to many residents.

In conclusion, I have many ideas on how to change our community for the better, but can not do it without your support. If you are ready for a change, I ask that you support me, and together we can make Lincoln, a town that you can be proud to call home.

Best Wishes,

Jason R. Harlow

Stephan Mesner, candidate for mayor

My name is Stephan A. Mesner and I am a candidate for the Mayor of Lincoln. I have lived in Lincoln with my wife Debbie and my children for the past 17 years.

Having served for two terms as an Alderman in Ward Two, I have been heavily involved in all aspects of running City government and issues that we face now and in the future. I see the Office of Mayor as that of a manager or a facilitator of all matters that come before the city. This does not mean that I would be managing everything in the city on a daily basis. Believing in and supporting the Department Heads to do the job that we expect them to do would be my approach. I will work with and help the Aldermen to effectively run their assigned committee positions. I believe that the Department Heads and Committee Chairs should be in the position of making decisions and developing all the plans that affect Lincoln.

Now as to some positions I have. I feel the most important issues that need to be addressed are:

Budget - No more tax increases until we address our current budget and remove or lower certain expenses.  Freeze all new hiring.  Continue G.O. Bond - Grant Writing

Police -

1. Take the same position as the county has taken as "why rent when you can buy." By this I mean that we should leave the radio room and radio operators at the County Complex and move the Police to other offices. The long term savings are dramatic.

2. All radio dispatchers should be civilians and not Police Officers.

Both are simple and the right business decisions.  (Note: There would be no loss of employment with current city employees.)

Fire - The city must address the Fire Department vs. Fire Ambulance Service.  We should not dispatch our Fire Department until requested by the Ambulance Service when particular assistance is needed.

Streets and Alleys - More street repairs - done by city crews.  Hire summer part-time to do simpler jobs, this would allow utilization of city crews on major projects.

Downtown Parking - Meet with Chamber of Commerce, Main Street, Businesses and County Officials and resolve this issue.

Funding for Main Street and Chamber of Commerce - Continue to fund, but look for a long term and established method of funding. For example - through available legislation I believe we can do this with taxes collected through motels/hotels.

Leaf Burning - Maybe it should not be an issue of whether or not to burn leaves, but an issue that it is the responsibility of the City to dispose of them. How will we do that and at what cost? This should not be an issue that we keep putting off.

Department Heads - Will there be changes? Yes.

Keeping businesses in town - Have a policy to work with businesses and be flexible. Be for businesses not against.

New Businesses - The first step is to have an aggressive Economic Developer. The Mayor should not be used as a Real Estate Agent trying to make land deals, but should promote the city and assist the proper people and agencies to work toward landing new businesses.

Liquor Commission - A Commission vs. Member of One. The Liquor Commission should consist of the Mayor and at least two, possibly four other members.

Thank you.

Joan Ritter, candidate for mayor

Elected as Mayor of Lincoln, IL in May 1997, Mayor Joan C. Ritter bring in her position a broad experience as a City Official, Businesswoman, and area Volunteer.


Born and raised in Galesburg, Illinois

Married 40 years

Two children , four grandchildren


Elementary and High School - Galesburg, Illinois

College - Marycrest College, Davenport, Iowa 1957-1959

Continuing Education - Various Banking Courses


Banking Arena - 13 years; Legislative Committee Clerk, House of Representatives 1971;Committee Member - Logan County Regional Planning Commission, IDOT Enhancement Downtown Grant, Lincoln 1993 - Present Member of Illinois State Local Records Commission 1997 Present Member Illinois State Archives Advisory Board 1999, - Present Gang Task Force Board, Alcohol and Tobacco Task Force, Lincoln City Planning Commission, The "Oasis" Senior Citizens ofLogan County, Panel Member Channel 47 At Issue Program, Property Tax Extension in Legislation- 1997, Co-Chairman Healthy Community Partnership -1997 to Present, Member of Chamber of Commerce, Mainstreet, Economic Development Council and Prairie Gardens Literacy Program Elementary Schools


Alderperson of Lincoln City Council 1991-1997

Precinct Committeeman 1981-1997

Mayor Pro Tem, I year

Mayor, May 1997 to present


Co-Chairman Heart and Cancer Fund Drive; Member League of Women Voters-, Logan-Mason Rehabilitation Center Advisory Board; ALMH Hospital Volunteer Zonta, Beta Sigma Phi Sorority, Past Rotary member; PTO President, Treasurer and Tutor - Northwest Elementary School, Head Start Volunteer, Treasurer Lincoln Railer Basketball Booster Club - 4 years


Named Outstanding Young Woman of America - 1970 Miss Congeniality Beta Sigma Phi Sorority -1979 Recognized by Illinois State Police Academy for Spouse Program - 1978 Co-Chairman Lincoln Elementary District 27 Task Force Actively involved with Elementary Students - Government and Patriotic Functions Outstanding Service as Public Official - The American Biographical Institute Instrumental in obtaining new Business in Lincoln-1997 to present Career to Public and Community highlighted by becoming 3 91th Mayor of Lincoln, IL Honorary Alumnus, Lincoln College Alumni Association, May 16, 1998 Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs Certification of Appreciation for continuing to recognize, remember and educate our children about patriotism and sacrifices all Veterans have made. Honorary Dan in Taekwondo in appreciation of dedicated service and outstanding contribution to the development of Taekwondo Honorary Ringmaster of the 2000 Royal Hanneford Circus presented by Ansar Temple Springfield, Illinois


Collectable plates, cups and saucers, Precious Moments, Possible Dreams Santa's and antiques.


1. Sewerage Disposal Plant Upgrading

2. Cooperation with EPA - contaminated ground, clean air and water

3. Grants - Public Safety, Business and Infrastructure

4. Development - Expansion, Business, Residential

5. Cooperative mode in general

6. Fiscal stability and accountability

Don Fults, candidate for mayor

I would like to serve you the People. I will listen to your concerns and work to solve or help your problems.


Past City Council Member

Educator at Lincoln Community High School

Hitex Aviation One Instructor (Summer Youth Program)


Carroll Catholic

Lincoln High School

Murray State University (Math, P.E. and Recreation)

Illinois State University (Special Education)

University of Illinois (Master of Education Administration)



Saint Fults - 18
James Fults - 16

Julie Fults - 14



Jeff and Susie Fults

Dr. Robert and Susan Fults

Larry and Doody Newberry

Warren and Jean Peters

Eleanor "Snooks" Feldman


Dr. J.E. Fults


Eleanor "Shug"






A never ending search for Big Businesses and Small Businesses will continue to be a focus for every Administration for the future of the Community. I will work closely with the Chamber of Commerce and Main Street in this effort.


We need Cooperation between the Mayor's Office and all Businesses in the Community. We must work with each other to solve our differences in an effective cooperative manner.


A Safe and Comfortable Community should be maintained. The Finest Police Department, yet fiscally responsible, is the goal of my Administration.


We must continue to update this Department. We must never let our guard down and fall behind in new methods and techniques.


"To Ban or Not to Ban"?, that is the Question.

"To Ban" -- Then the City would have to pick up the leaves at no cost to the citizens.

"Not to Ban" -- Then the City needs to stay as they are now or have designated days to burn (one weekend per month on alternating sides of the City.) A Person will then know the days of burning in the designated areas.

Safety Factor: Small Children tend to play in large piles of leaves in the yard and in the street. The life of one Child can never be compromised in the Disposal of Leaves and the Burning Issue.


We must have a Long Term and Short Term Plan for the Upgrade and Replacement of our Sewer Drains, Streets, Vehicles and all other Equipment. Every Department should implement a Five-Year Plan.


This Service will make "Lincoln Look Good" and help People dispose of their junk. When this activity was stopped, junk started to pile up again. This is a great service to the People.

1, as your Mayor will be a fair and impartial individual. I will listen to both sides of an issue and try to come to a solution to solve the problem and benefit the community as a whole. 

Beth Davis, candidate for mayor

Dear Citizens of Lincoln, IL:

I am writing to inform you of my decision to run for Mayor of the City of Lincoln, and I am asking for your support. I am a life-long resident of Lincoln, Logan County, and wish to contribute the best I can to the betterment and safety of the Citizens of this fine City. I would like to introduce myself and give you some background information about me and the issues for which I stand. Besides being highly motivated and energetic, I am fair and honest and look at all sides of a situation before making a decision. I support an open-door policy whereby concerned citizens and business owners may reach me. I will listen to your concerns and suggestions and implement them to the best of my ability, taking all concerns into consideration. I offer a different, and I believe better, choice for the residents and business owners in Lincoln, IL, and know I will do my utmost for you if given the chance. Please note my personal information:

  • I am 42 years old, a life-long resident of Lincoln, and mother of three children—Emilia 20, Joseph 18, and Alexandrea 15
  • I am the former Elizabeth Ann Johnson, daughter of the Late Grant W. "Bill" Johnson of Atlanta, IL and the Late Mildred E. "Millie" Wiggers-Johnson of Beason, IL
  • Graduated from Lincoln Elementary Schools, Lincoln Community High School, and Lincoln College
  • Graduated from the University of IL-Springfield with a BA Degree in Legal Studies/Minor in Political Studies, and am an American Bar Association approved Legal Assistant
  • Current Part-time Student at the Concord University School of Law
  • Certified Professional Secretary (CPS) Designation, 1985
  • Illinois Notary Public since 1985
  • Executive Employee--22½ years with the State of IL—Currently employed in Lincoln
  • Logan County Board Member for the past two years

  • Chair and voting member of the Logan County Health Department Board

  • Chair of the Public Aid Appeals Board for Logan County

  • Liaison to "Main Street Lincoln" for Logan County

  • Logan County Board’s Representative for the "Looking for Lincoln" Program

  • Member of the Building and Grounds Committee

  • Member of the Logan County Planning and Zoning Commission

  • Past Member of the Insurance and Legislative Committee

  • Served as Lincoln City Council’s Recorder for 16½ years—June, 1982 – November, 1998
  • Member of Holy Family Church, Lincoln, IL
  • Lifetime Member of the IL Coalition of Citizens with Disabilities, Logan County Chapter
  • Member of the Lincoln, IL Knights of Columbus Auxiliary
  • President of the Logan County Republican Women’s Club, 1997, 2000, & 2001
  • Current Past President, Board Member, & Current Member of Optimist International, Lincoln Chapter
  • Current Past President and Founder of the "We’re Investing Now (WIN)" Investment Club, 1999-2001
  • Member of Zonta International, Lincoln, IL Chapter
  • Logan County Co-Coordinator for the George W. Bush for President 2000 Champaign
  • Member of Illinois Women in Government
  • Lincoln YMCA Volunteer Soccer Coach for Seven Years
  • Member of the Carroll Catholic School Club

I believe in an open-door policy and a "delegation" style of management. It is how I have always managed and will continue to do so if elected Mayor. If we, as Citizens of Lincoln, have placed our trust and confidence in our Fire Chief, Police Chief, Street Department Superintendent, City Engineer, City Building Inspector, and other professionals who have to make very wise and important decisions in the day-to-day operations of our fine City, we need to trust them to use their training expertise and professional judgments in managing their respective departments with the knowledge that they will perform to the best of their ability or otherwise be held accountable to the ten City Council Members representing the citizenry of Lincoln, IL. If elected Mayor of this fine City, I will not pretend to know everything about the Engineer, Fire, Police, and Street Departments’ day-to-day operations nor will I require the department heads to "clear" through me on a daily basis every decision they wish to implement in their respective departments. Yes, I will insist each department head contact me if my input and direction are needed regarding an issue and if it will have a grave impact upon our Citizens and/or City administration. But I do not believe in micro-managing our City’s department heads’ decision-making abilities when our department heads have extensive training and many years of experience to their credit, which, in my opinion, are necessary prerequisites in managing specific, trained groups of professionals. I don’t hold an engineering, firefighting, nor policing/criminology degree, and I, for one, do not believe it is the Mayor’s job to give daily directives/orders to department heads when the Citizens of this City have elected ten competent Council Members to democratically make decisions regarding important issues affecting our City. I want to enhance our City government’s performance increase City employee morale. We, as Citizens, should want the very best city government we can achieve. I believe happy employees are productive employees and in order to bring out the best in everyone, is to allow them to perform their job duties to the best of their abilities--allowing them to give input in a team member fashion, and instill pride in their accomplishments for the Citizens they are working for and protecting.

I believe the City of Lincoln does not need a full time Mayor at this point in time, nor has our city had need of one in decades past. The Mayor’s responsibilities are to promote a positive image of our fair city to others, obtain ideas from citizens and business owners for improvements and enhancements to our city, to serve as an ambassador to various events throughout the community, state, and federal arenas, instill pride in our City Employees for the jobs they perform, to increase morale throughout the City’s administration, to preside over City Council Meetings and to break tie-votes when our ten elected Alderpersons are not able to reach a majority vote.

I am a pro-business individual and, if elected Mayor, will work with business and civic leaders, the Lincoln/Logan County Chamber of Commerce, and Logan County Board to create an industrial park to entice large industry to locate in Lincoln, IL, thus providing more higher paid jobs for our Citizens. I will work with current business owners to retain their businesses in Lincoln through grants and incentives to increase their revenues.

I will promote increased community policing within our city for safer children, elderly, and disabled citizens.

I have many other issues of concern I will address in forthcoming letters to You—Citizens and Business Owners within the City of Lincoln. My goal, if elected as your next Mayor, is to bring forth trust, friendliness, professionalism, and pride for which our great City was christened 147 years ago. I bring a new and better leadership style to the City I love and have resided in all my life.

If you would like to assist me in this endeavor, you are more than welcome. A team effort is always the best way to achieve a goal. Together, we can make a better Lincoln – a Lincoln with positive, open communication among our Citizens, City Council, Businesses, and Mayor’s Office for the betterment of all.

Thank you for your consideration of my candidacy for Mayor of Lincoln, Illinois.


Elizabeth A. "Beth" Davis,

504 North Kickapoo Street

Lincoln, Illinois 62656

217/735-3912 or or

Candidates for other city offices

Lester Plotner, candidate for city treasurer

My name is Les Plotner and I am currently Treasurer for the City of Lincoln. I have held the treasurer's job since 1994 when I was appointed to the post by Former Mayor, John Guzzardo. I was subsequently elected to the office four year's ago And sincerely feel that I have been helpful to the City in that capacity.

Many in Lincoln know about my past experience as the Superintendent of Schools for the Lincoln Elementary School District #27 over a period of 26 years. I also served two years as Ass't. Superintendent prior to assuming the head job in 1968. In addition, I Was a teacher/coach at Lincoln Jr. High School and Central School for a total of seven years from 1956-1963. During the period from 1963-1966 1 served as SuperintendentPrincipal of Chester-East Lincoln School District.

During my year's in school administration I had the opportunity to work a great deal with school finances creating fiscal year budgets, administering state and federal grant programs, projecting future revenues and expenditures, negotiating with the teacher's organization, and serving as an educational leader for a staff of 140 people. During my tenure as Superintendent in District #27, the school population went from a total of 2150 students to approximately 1400 when I retired in 1994. When I left the school district I Left it in good financial shape thanks to the people of Lincoln who understand the need to adequately fund the children's education in our city.

As treasurer, I have the task of investing surplus revenues for the City and also make investments for both the Police and Firemen's Pension Funds. Usually, the City has about $3,000,000 plus invested at all times and both pension funds have in excess of $7,000,000 plus invested at all times. I must follow the investment guidelines of both the City Council and the Trustees of the pension funds as well as the State of Illinois when investing all funds. All funds must be properly collateralized with pension funds requiring government backing for their funds. In addition, I make monthly reports to the City Council to keep them abreast of the current status of revenues and/or expenditures as compared to the fiscal year's budget.

Approximate two year's ago I discovered that the sales tax distribution was not correct for the City of Lincoln in that a portion of our sales tax revenues were being incorrectly distributed to Logan County instead of to Lincoln. The gain in sales tax revenues has been quite substantial since that discovery.

I feel I am qualified for the City Treasurer's position in Lincoln and hope the voters in Lincoln feel the same was about my candidacy in the February election.

Juanita Josserand, candidate for city clerk

I have lived in Logan County all of my 64 years. I have worked for the citizens of Lincoln first as Accounts Payable, Payroll Clerk and Deputy Clerk for sixteen years. I was then appointed to complete Robert Madigan's unfinished term February of 1987. 1 ran and was elected to the City Clerk's position in May, 1989, May 1993, May 1997 and am seeking one more term, to begin May of 2001. 1 begin my thirty-first year the f first of March, 2001. 1 feel I have brought a lot of experience and knowledge to the office. I was instrumental In having the drop boxes placed on Kickapoo Street for payments of all city bills. I have recently installed a document scanner to eventually get all of the papers and records that need to be kept, stored either on discs or stored in the memory of the computer attached to the scanner.

I originally campaigned to be a Clerk who would uphold all city ordinances and State Statutes In a fair and consistent manner. I have always been sympathetic to the needs of the citizens of Lincoln, but also realize I have been elected to carry out the laws of our city. My office handles all city payroll, payment of claims against the city, all birth and death certificates occurring In Logan County, keeper of the records for the City and I as the liaison between the Citizens of Lincoln and the City Council.

My office staff assists with questions from the public and either answers those questions or transfers then to someone who can possibly be of help to them. I have a very effective staff who handles a lot of questions and comments regarding the city and I know they do a great job. We are here to serve and I would like to continue to do so.

(Unedited position papers from the candidates)



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