Election 2013: Halil Avci
Halil Avci is one of seven candidates running for four seats on the Darien City Council.
Your Name: Halil Avci
Position Sought: Darien City Council, Ward 7
Campaign Contact Information: Residents may contact me by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (630) 963-4260.
Family Members: Wife Teresa; daughters Suna, 27, and Talia, 21; sons Ben, 25, and Kamran, 21.
Education: University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1978, Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering
Current Occupation and Employer: Environmental Engineer, Team Lead, and Program Manager at Argonne National Laboratory. Argonne employee since 1990. Manages Argonne’s Technical Support Program to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission for licensing of new reactors and license renewal of operating reactors.
Adjunct faculty member at Northwestern University’s School of Continuing Studies, teaching courses in environmental sciences and energy – environment interactions since 2003.
Why Are You Seeking Office?
I am seeking to be reelected because I would like to continue working on a few initiatives, such as the Darien Committee for Intergovernmental Coordination and establishment of a direct, reliable, and convenient public transportation system between Darien and Chicago. In addition, I believe that the knowledge and insights I have gained so far will help me be more effective in addressing the issues facing Darien, such as maintaining the safety and public services offered by the city under budgetary constraints.
What will be your single most important priority if you get elected?
Continue being responsive to the needs of Ward 7 residents and make sure that they receive their fair share of the City services.
If contested, what sets you apart from the other candidates?
Experience. I believe that my service to the community over the last 22 years as a member of the Darien School District #61 School Board from 1999 to 2007, a member of the Darien Environmental Committee from 1995 to 2006, a soccer coach for Darien Youth Club and Darien Dynamo from 1991 to 2006, a member of the Darien Rotary Club since 2010, and an alderman since June 2007, has given me a unique understanding of the interrelationships among the key players and the challenges facing the city and the community.
What do you see as the top three goals for the City of Darien?
1. Keeping Darien safe by maintaining a highly skilled police force, through cooperative educational programs with Schools, and by forward looking data analyses and intervention practices.
2. Development of a comprehensive infrastructure improvement plan, including the development of the city-owned property at the corner of Cass Ave and Plainfield Rd.
3. Development of a forward looking, sustainable, and balanced budgeting and planning process.
What can be done to continue the promotion of economic development in Darien?
I believe the city has to be more proactive and selective in economic development. For example, for development of the city-owned property at Cass and Plainfield, the city, with input from residents, needs to decide what types of businesses would fit in that location and market those types of businesses aggressively. For the remainder of the commercial properties, the city should maintain close relationship with the property owners, identify potential issues and work with the owners to prevent problems and promote continued occupancy.
Is there an issue that's been discussed within the last year in Darien that you think should be revisited?
In my opinion, all issues should be reviewed periodically as the circumstances change. In particular, among the issues that were discussed by the city council over the last year that will be and should be reviewed are the new program the chief of police has proposed to replace the DARE program, the video gaming ordinance that was discussed by the council recently, and the development of the city-owned property at Cass and Plainfield.
Please add any other information pertinent to your campaign.
There are a couple of initiatives that I have been actively promoting and would like to continue working on, because I believe they both are very important for the future of Darien. They are (1) improved communication and coordination among the governmental organizations within and around Darien, and (2) development of a direct, reliable, and convenient public transportation system between Darien and Chicago.