I have been watching Naperville city council meetings since 2010. That’s more than 100 meetings, and I believe without a doubt that councilman Steve Chirico is the person to lead the City of Naperville into the future.
He brings a wealth of leadership dimensions to the table including:
- Demonstrating accountability
- Demonstrating courage
- Communicating effectively
- Managing performance
- Thinking critically
- Managing execution
- Maximizing relationships
- Driving change
- Building trust
As a Naperville business owner for more than 30 years, he has a keen awareness of what it takes to lead a successful business. It takes more than just turning on the light switch. While working his way through college, he started a small tile shop, which is now known as Great Western Tile Flooring; a leading specialty flooring destination. Naperville needs a mayor with keen business sense, and Steve Chirico is that person.
Additionally Chirico brings a strong business and local government acuity including:
- Keen understanding of budgets and negotiations
- Disciplined fiscal conservative
- Focused on maintaining reasonable property taxes
- Determination to improve economic development
- Promoting a strong business climate
He can and will accomplish this through his ability to be a consensus builder. The ability to bring opposite sides to the table, listen, and forge agreements. This is a huge plus for the residents and businesses of Naperville.
On the personal side of councilman Chirico, other factors that will help him lead Naperville effectively and compassionately include:
- He is a livelong resident of Naperville
- A level-headed temperamant
- The ability to step-back for a clearer view
- Father of seven Naperville school graduates.
Now Chirico and I don’t agree on everything, including the ability of city manager Doug Krieger. Chirico is in his corner for now, and I believe the City of Naperville can do better with a more competent leader as city manager. Most importantly, he and I can agree to disagree respectfully.
Watchdog was very critical of Chirico when he first joined the council in 2011. In fact, Watchdog was almost relentless in criticizing Chirico. To Chirico’s credit, he reached out to me, for us to have a chance to chat over a cup of coffee. It was at that get together, that I quickly realized that he really is a quality guy with class. He said something profound, when discussing a couple of his initial missteps on he council. He said, “I blew it. I wish I could have a do-over, and do it right.” Wow, how many ‘politicians’ are willing to say that and have it be genuine. His ability to build a consensus, demonstrate courage, and build trust were evident.
He and his wife Julie, who is an absolute delight, have a blended family of seven children. He understands his priorities of being a dad, a husband, a business owner, and a leader. Steve Chirico is the complete package. He’s real, he’s sincere, and he will be an outstanding mayor for the City of Naperville.
If this is not enough, then how about this. If he ever had to go one-on-one in a wrestling match with any other mayor, my money is on Chirico. He was the Co-Captain of the Naperville Central wrestling team, where he placed 4th in the State Tournament. He was the first ever four-year varsity letterman in the NCHS wrestling program and his peers selected him as the most valuable wrestler as he was undefeated in dual meets his senior year.
What that means is that if things ever get out of control during a city council meeting, Steve Chirico will quickly regain control.