Resident looks to bring positivity, communication to board

Sean McGowan

GERMANTOWN HILLS — Todd Rice moved to Germantown Hills eight years ago from Peoria.

Throughout his time as a Germantown Hills resident, he said the Village Board's attitude has not changed, which is why he is running for trustee. He said both the present and former board both exude negativity.

"I've paid attention to the last two elections, and there seems to be a lot of negativity," he said. "One board did what they wanted, and we have another board that does what they want."

For example, Rice asked the Village Board a question at its Dec. 27 meeting. He said he wanted to know whether Woodford County deputies could do their paperwork in the school parking lots to help prevent school shootings.

"They have laptops in all their cars," he said.

Once Rice asked the question, he said he felt hostility coming from the board.

"All I did was ask a question," he said. "We need some people in there that are a little more receptive to the needs of the community," he said.

Rice said he sees himself as a positive guy because he does not hold anything against people with different opinions from his.

"I'll listen to both sides," he said. "You have to be willing to listen to every viewpoint." Because Rice likes to hear both sides of a debate, he said he always takes the time to research when needed. One example of his research involved looking through meeting minutes for the Village Board as well as every committee associated with the village, such as the sewer and economic development committees.

He said he wants to use his capacity to research in order to keep the Village Board connected with other village entities.

These entities include the area school districts and the Chamber of Commerce, among others.

"Do they really communicate with each other?" he stated rhetorically.

He said whether or not the board communicates well with these other entities is unknown to him. But he also said it does not seem to be the case because of what is revealed in meeting minutes. To exemplify a community that does well in this regard, he referred to Peoria.

"The Peoria council is very involved with district 150," he said.

Rice's background consists of construction work, which he did for 50 to 60 hours per week while attending classes at the University of Illinois at Springfield.

"I feel my experiences over the years have battle tested me some," he said.

He received a bachelor's degree in business management from the university in the fall of 2005.

In addition, he took on the role of operations manager at Lowe's beginning in 1995 and held the position for five years.

Now, Rice works for Caterpillar Inc. as a production systems blackbelt. He said a lot of what he does deals with facts and figures.

“I’m trying to make Caterpillar better at dealing with suppliers,” he said. “A lot of people think it’s an easy job, but sometimes I’m helping suppliers make impactful financial decisions.”

The Woodford Times will continue running candidate stories for the Germantown Hills spring elections until every candidate gets interviewed, including the mayoral candidates. The first Germantown Hills trustee candidate story came out in the Nov. 14, 2012, edition.

Another candidate story appeared in the Feb. 6 edition of the Woodford Times.

Voting for the election will occur in April. Call the village at 383-2209 for more information about the local election.

Meeting minutes for the Village Board meetings are available to residents at The minutes published on the website date from Dec. 16, 2010, to Jan. 24, 2013.

Some minutes between Jan. 24 and the most recent board meeting still need approval from the board before residents will see them online.