First To Go, Needs To Stay Gone

Sometimes timing is everything. The topic of this last posting prior to the municipal election was going to focus on knowing who not to vote for, being  as important as knowing who to vote for, and specifically calling out Dick Furstenau as being the candidate not to vote for.

The posting was nearly completed, when the Chicago Tribune and Naperville Sun published two “Letters To The Editor”, April 2 and 3  from Naperville Mayor George Pradel and former Naperville city manager Peter Burchard (1998-2007) which were devoted to the same theme;  Furstenau is not good for Naperville residents. Watchdog scratched the nearly completed posting in favor of printing both ‘Letters To The Editor’ below.

Pradel: Furstenau motives ‘not good’ for Naperville residents

Before you cast your vote for any candidate, please check their background and verify their reasons for running for office and if they want to represent you or if it is something personal that they feel they can change about Naperville.

There is one candidate, Richard “Dick” Furstenau, who previously served on our City Council and was unanimously censured for this actions as a councilman. Censured means that we (the City Council) strongly disapproved of his conduct and actions as a councilman. Dick, in my opinion, is a bully and certainly is not a team player.

He filed a lawsuit against the city, which was later dismissed, but cost the taxpayers (you and me) over a $1 million to defend.

Dick had his chance to serve on the council and because of his conduct brought the position of Naperville councilman to the lowest level ever.

I want you to visit the website of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 42 for some very interesting facts. The website is

My time serving with Dick has been very trying and unpleasant at times. His motives are self-centered and not for the good of all the residents.

I pray that the wonderful candidates will be triumphant who are seeking the position of councilman for the right reasons.

Thank you for allowing me to share my concerns openly. I have never written to the editor of any newspaper in my life because I only want to say positive comments about everything and every issue.

Thank you all for letting me serve as your mayor for the last 20 years.

George Pradel


Former city manager: Furstenau ‘should finish dead last’

As the former city manager and now a non-resident of Naperville I have nothing to gain by inserting my two cents into the City Council race. Only my heartfelt desire for ethical and professional government leads me to speak about the many reasons why Dick Furstenau should finish dead last in the field of candidates vying for the Naperville City Council.

First, while serving as a Naperville city councilman, Dick ran in a primary election for state senate. He lost.

A short time after his loss he sent me a letter demanding that the city of Naperville reimburse him for the cost of the election.

He blamed the city of Naperville for his election loss. I thought he was joking. He wasn’t. The City Council refused his demand for money. Dick Furstenau, a sitting councilman, sued the city. Furstenau’s demand for money from the city of Naperville was ultimately dismissed by the United States District Court but only after taxpayers paid over $1 million defending the frivolous case.

Second, Dick Furstenau, while serving as a city councilman, was arrested for misdemeanor battery against a Naperville police officer. He was not convicted. In my office in city hall, Dick demonstrated how he “barely touched” the officer when he swatted his chest with the back of his hand.

Third, in 2007, Councilman Dick Furstenau was formally reprimanded by the Naperville City Council when it publicly voted to censure him for his inappropriate behavior toward employees and actions while serving as a councilman. This unprecedented step by the City Council focused on how Dick acted contrary to his oath of office.

As city manager my goal was to work closely with the mayor, City Council, employees and the community to provide the most effective and efficient public services possible. While it is rare for a city manager to speak up, I still feel the obligation to remind those who share my principles that a wolf in sheep’s clothing wants in again.

Peter Burchard

Naperville City Manager, 1998 – 2007

Watchdog’s reasons for beginning the blog are outlined in our Statement/Mission/Vision. Dick Furstenau has violated at least one aspect of each of those platforms and for those reasons, along with those outlined by Mayor Pradel and former city manager Peter Burchard, he is not worthy of the vote. Since Watchdog began posting, Furstenau was the first ‘to go’ and needs to stay gone.

Show 4 Comments


  1. Gerard H Schilling

    Anyone willing to stand up to these clowns past, present and future has my vote including Furstenau. The attack on Furstenaul is a thinly disguised attack on Krause who he supports and endorses over the ConEd, solar power guy (500+k paid for by the tax payers) Chirico. Fustenau’s claimed sins and transgressions were bucking the rubber stamp mostly lazy and incompetent council members. What ever he did or didn’t do pails by significance compared to Krieger and his band of crooks and thugs running our fair city and fully supported by most of the current city council.

  2. Lisa Flanagan

    I think there are a lot of behaviors in the council that are inappropriate and I don’t think the police department is appropriate many times either. I am confused as to who Furstenau bullied? The council? I think the current council sometimes bullies residents–or at least gangs up on them.

  3. Furstenau tried to bully just about anyone he could, simply put. He is demeaning, disrespectful, and nasty to City staff members and no I don’t work for the city. I witnessed his deplorable behavior one night a number of years ago at the old Brickhouse Pizza. It was a couple nights before Xmas and Dick came in to pick up some pizzas to go. About two minutes later he returned and literally shoved the 3-4 pizzas he’d purchased at the 20 something gal (a manager) behind the pick up counter. Something about one of the pizza ingredients was wrong – instead of it being 1/2 sausage 1/2 onion they put sausage on the whole pizza and not just 1/2. He was verbally abusive and calling her incompetent and demanding he get the pizzas for free. All within earshot of other patrons at the bar and nearby table. Absolutely awful and I was told by staff on hand the behavior was not out of character for Dick, he was consistently difficult.

    He frequents The Lantern and I’ve personally seen him stick his hand in the popcorn machine to grab a handful of popcorn instead of using the scoop and small containers which are right there. A guy called him out on it, saying”hey could you not stick your hands in the popcorn, that’s just rude” and Dick says “Mind your own business, every body does that”. Unreal.

    Former Counilman Kenn Miller, a very nice man, had similar things to say about Furstenau and so have many others. All these people aren’t wrong. For Mayor Pradel to write a letter like this is very telling.

    Dick Furstenau is all about Dick Furstenau. He cost the taxpayers a huge sum of money with his frivolous lawsuit driven by a personal agenda. He has a proven inability to work cooperatively with people.

    This is not the type of person Naperville needs on the council. He had his 12 years and caused gobs of problems. Enough is enough.

  4. So glad to note Furstenau got trounced, finishing 14th and trailing most of the pack. Should be an interesting and lively City Council starting in May – lots of different backgrounds and perspectives.

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