January 04, 2012 | 08:17 AMWALWORTH — She made phone calls, talked to people in grocery stores and asked dozens of people if they would consider running in the spring election.
Sue Pruessing was working hard to unseat a popular incumbent — herself.
However, with no candidates interested in the seat, Pruessing decided Tuesday to seek another term.
Pruessing is finishing her fourth term on the Big Foot High School Board, and she wanted to step away from politics.
After all, her children have graduated, and if she stays on the board much longer she will see her grandchildren enter the district's doors.
In December, Pruessing filed noncandidacy for the School Board seat, which she hoped would entice someone to run.
However, no one took out papers.
Pruessing knows she could step away from the board and not worry about the vacant seat, but leaving the position empty would be hard to do. Especially after she put so much time and energy into the district.
"I don't think it's fair to the board to leave them like that," she said.
Staying on the board hasn't always been this easy. In past years, Pruessing faced qualified challengers for the seat.
Early in her political career, she competed with Debbie Schroeder, a real-estate agent with Keefe.
As an incumbent, Pruessing also squared off against Tyler August, who is now the area's representative in the State Assembly.
Those elections were no cakewalks, but at the end of the day Pruessing came out on top.
However, for the past two elections, when Pruessing wanted to step away, no one stepped forward to fill her shoes.
In 2009, Pruessing filed noncandidacy, which she hoped would entice someone to run for the board. But when no one stepped forward, Pruessing ran for re-election.
During the last election cycle, Pruessing said she couldn't promise that she would finish her entire three-year term. This time around, she is equally reluctant to commit to an entire term.
Walworth Elementary School
At the village's elementary school, Mary Heyer is the only incumbent seeking re-election. School Board member Peg Hubertz has decided not to seek another term on the board.
However, Jacob Ries, the son of long-time Big Foot Teacher Marsha, is running to fill that term.
Fontana Elementary School
At Fontana Elementary School, board member Leo Bourneuff, who represents the village of Fontana, has filed a declaration of non-candidacy.
Brandon Marvin and Lis Laing, who is the daughter of former Fontana Village President William Turner, will seek that spot.
Board member Chadd Hartwig has filed papers to run for the seat that opened when Rallee Chupich resigned.
In September, Hartwig, who represents the towns of Walworth and Delavan, was appointed to the board.
Chupich resigned with more than a year left on her three-year term. Hartwig is running to complete the last year of the term.
In 2013, an election will be held for the entire three-year term.
The three incumbents running for re-election in Walworth won't have much competition in April.
Trustees Kent Johnson, Eddie Snyder and LeRoy Nordmeyer are all seeking re-election.
Fontana Municipal Judge
Municipal Court Judge David Jensen is seeking his third term in office. Jensen was first elected to a two-year term in April 2008 and was re--elected without opposition in April 2010.
Former Municipal Court Judge Pete Wilson is looking to take back his seat. Wilson was the Fontana Municipal Court judge for 17 years.
This election has higher stakes than previous municipal court races. The term for judge changed from two to four years.
For at least the past five years, the elections for the Fontana Trustee seats have been very competitive. This year will be no different.
Six candidates are vying for three spots on the board. Incumbents Patrick Kenny and Cynthia Wilson are seeking re-election.
Incumbent Peg Pollitt decided not to seek re-election.
Rick Pappas, who serves on the village's Board of Review, Lakefront and Harbor Committee and Protection Committee has filed paperwork to run for the seat. Pappas has previously run unsuccessfully for Village Trustee and State Representative.
Scott Vilona, a member of the village's Finance Committee and a member of the Country Club Estates Association Board of Directors is seeking his first term.
Derek D'Auria, who has served on the village's Plan Commission since 2006, and Human Resources Committee member Brandon R. Marvin, who also is running for the Fontana School Board, are also running.