Lake Forest mayoral race taking shape; ‘I think this is a really crucial time for the city’
By Daniel I. Dorfman
Pioneer Press • Dec 13, 2022 at 4:40 pm
Lake Forest is set to have a spirited mayoral race next year as former Alderwoman Prue Beidler has announced an independent candidacy, thus taking on the hierarchy of the Lake Forest Caucus.
Beidler, who represented the city’s 1st Ward from 2014 through 2020, said she is planning to file the paperwork necessary to challenge former Alderman Stanford “Randy” Tack, the endorsed candidate of the Lake Forest Caucus Committee.
“I think this is a rally crucial time for the city of Lake Forest,” Beidler said in an interview. “It is a community I love, and the city needs as mayor someone who can build coalitions, and knows how to lead collaboratively, and is a strong believer in consensus. I believe I am that person.”
Former Lake Forest Alderman Prue Beidler has announced an independent run for mayor in April's municipal election - Original Credit: Lake Forester (Prue Beidler / HANDOUT)
Beidler is seeking to be the first female mayor in the city’s history. In her campaign announcement, she speaks of being a 46-year resident of the city who participated in other civic efforts prior to being elected to the City Council.
“I think it is important for the city to have me this time and I happen to be a female, but I would not say that is my only qualification,” she said. “I also think there are real benefits that women bring, and I don’t know if I am a consensus builder just because I am a woman or that is just my style, but I believe that will serve the city well.”
Beidler’s entry into the mayor’s race follows her unsuccessful attempt to get the caucus endorsement earlier this year. Both she and Tack were the two finalists from a field that started with approximately two dozen candidates, according to caucus officials.
Immediately after Tack won the endorsement, Beidler said she would not run an independent campaign in an interview with Pioneer Press.
But then ahead of the caucus’s annual meeting on Nov. 9, Beidler wrote a letter to the overall caucus membership saying she was “disappointed and discouraged” not to be the candidate.
At the annual meeting, Tack’s nomination was not supported by the general membership, but caucus officials decided to proceed with Tack’s endorsement saying that vote was nonbinding.
Beidler said at that point, she reversed course and decide to run.
“I felt I needed to get into that race at that point because of my skill set and what I can do to serve the community,” she said.
Tack labeled Beidler’s entry as “unfortunate” as they seek to become the city’s elected official in a municipal government where the city manager is responsible for day-to-day operations.
“For some reason, three caucuses telling her she is not the best candidate isn’t enough for her and she wants to put the city through this,” he said. “I think it is unnecessary, and I think it is divisive and it is going to result in an election that costs a lot of money for a volunteer position.”