Brookfield’s PEP Party has announced its slate of candidates for the spring 2017 Consolidated Election, and most of the names certainly have a familiar ring.
Kit Ketchmark, who was elected village president in 2013 after serving for 10 years as a village trustee, will seek a second term as the village’s leader.
Ketchmark touted PEP’s accomplishments during his first term, from the introduction of a storm water management policy and a village cost-sharing program for residential flood control to major park improvements to the successful passage of a referendum last spring to fund road improvements.
He also pointed out the restructuring of the village’s building department and the hiring of a full-time community and economic development director as a key part of PEP’s strategy for attracting new commercial and mixed-use development to places like Ogden Avenue and Eight Corners, where a new tax increment financing district is about to be created.
“Certainly the pace of things and results can be frustrating at times,” Ketchmark said. “But having a dedicated person working with developers and builders is a huge advantage. We’re a year into that, and we’re seeing the effects of that.
“These aren’t short-term solutions.”
Also seeking re-election to two of three trustee seats up for grabs next year are Michael Garvey and Nicole Gilhooley.
Gilhooley was elected in 2013 in what was her first bid for elective office. She previously served on the Brookfield Beautification Commission, where she served as chairwoman.
Garvey, meanwhile, was elected trustee in 2013 after serving the prior eight years as village president. He was unable to seek a third term due to the village’s term limit law. Before serving as president, Garvey spent five years as a trustee.
Brian Oberhauser, another PEP member, who is finishing up his second term as a trustee, will be unable to run for another term due to term limits. PEP has chosen Ed Cote (pronounced Coh-tay), a member of the village’s Parks and Recreation Commission, as its third trustee candidate.
Cote, 45, was appointed to the recreation commission in October 2015 and serves as its co-chair. He works for Verizon as an information technology security specialist after serving for eight years in the U.S. Navy as an electronics technician.
According to Ketchmark, Cote was chosen as the party’s candidate from a field of three they had interviewed. Asked what made Cote the top choice, Ketchmark said, “His involvement.”
“He’s gotten a feel for how local government works, how commissions work, and he has an interesting background that he brings to the table,” Ketchmark said. “It’s a different viewpoint on the board, he comes at things from a lot of different angles.”
Cote said that in his dozen years as a Brookfield resident he’s been involved in community life through his church, Little League and the YMCA.
“I’ve always been part of something, and I wanted to expand into that,” Cote said.
He said that economic development is of particular interest to him as a candidate for trustee.
“I’ve been here over a decade and have seen [economic development] increase,” Cote said. “I’ve seen infrastructure development of Brookfield greatly increased. I wanted to be more involved in that.
“Everything is a long-term solution. There is no easy fix.”
Finally, PEP has slated Brigid Weber as the party’s candidate for village clerk. Weber was appointed clerk in August 2015 after the death of Catherine Colgrass Edwards. At the time of her appointment, however, she was not new to the job. Weber served as village clerk from 2006 to 2013.