Ignacio G. "Jerry" Ramirez wants voters to know he is not a politician.
"My campaign is self-funded," Ramirez told a crowd at a recent candidates' night event in Romeoville. "I don't owe anyone anything. My only allegiance is to you, God, my family and my country."
Ramirez is a newcomer, and one of four candidates for the board seat. Two are Democrat, two are Republican. Ramirez is a Republican. Voters will vote for two candidates for the two district positions. District 9 of Will County represents Joliet.
Ramirez said he would be that "fresh voice we so covet" in Will County government, instead of the same politicans running again and again.
"I give you my word," he said, "I will serve you fully and wholly. I am not a machine or established candidate. I am an independent voice and will serve you, the voter, and not special interest."
The Sept. 20 candidates' night in Romeoville was hosted by Lewis University and Grand Haven, an active senior living community in Romeoville.
Ramirez said he had three "simple plans" for the county, including stimulating local business, reforming the education system and providing jobs for residents.
"Not minimum wage jobs," Ramirez said. "Real jobs, where people can make a living."
Some people say we cannot treat government like a business, he said. "I say we can," Ramirez said. "We are your steward, your watchdogs." Ramirez said he is a 49-year-old business man.
Ramirez said he was a delegate for Rick Santorum at the Republican National Convention, and will support Santorum's platform of "pro-family, pro-life, pro-second amendment."
"It's a very important election at every level," he said. "Please vote with conscience."