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Meet Oak Lawn Mayoral Candidate Terry Vorderer

Patch logo Patch 2/22/2021 Lorraine Swanson
a man smiling for the camera: Terrence "Terry" Vorderer is running for mayor of Oak Lawn in the April 6 consolidated election. © Terry Vorderer Campaign Terrence "Terry" Vorderer is running for mayor of Oak Lawn in the April 6 consolidated election.

OAK LAWN, IL — Terrence “Terry” Vorderer is running for mayor of Oak Lawn in the 2021 consolidated election. Vorderer is a lifelong resident of the village and is retired from the Oak Lawn Police Department. He is a 2-term trustee representing Dist. 4 on the Oak Lawn Village Board. Early voting for begins March 10; election day for the consolidated election is April 6.

Name: Terrence (Terry) Vorderer

Age (as of Election Day): 73

Town/City of Residence: Oak Lawn

Office Sought: Village president (mayor)

Party Affiliation (if a partisan race): Non-partisan

Does anyone in your family work in politics or government?


Education: Brother Rice High School, Moraine Valley Community Collage, Governors State University and the Northwestern University Traffic Institute.

Occupation: Retired Oak Lawn Police Department of 34 years, retiring as chief of patrol: independent business owner for 30 years (wholesale candy and toys)

Campaign website: Terry Vorderer for Oak Lawn Mayor (Facebook)

Previous or Current Elected or Appointed Office: Oak Lawn Park District Commission for 6 years, one year as president; Village of Oak Lawn trustee (2 terms, 8 years).

The single most pressing issue facing our village and this is what I intend to do about it.

  1. Maintaining a strong and professional police presence.
  2. Continuing and maintaining the strong village services which makes Oak Lawn a desirable community to raise a family and live in.
  3. Holding a responsible line on P\property taxes

Do you support Black Lives Matter and what are your thoughts on the demonstrations held since the death of George Floyd and the shooting of Jacob Blake?

Demonstrations and protests are protected by our constitution, riots and violence are not. Professional policing is the goal of every community.

Do you think the current board has done enough to support racial equality, and if not, what specifically should be done to do so?

Oak lawn is a welcoming and diverse community. We will continue our work to maintain that.

What are your thoughts on the national and local coronavirus response? Do you favor measures such as limiting operation of non-essential businesses and restricting indoor/outdoor dining? And do you favor a local mask mandate?

I believe it is good that we voluntarily comply with guidelines given us through proven science.

What are your thoughts on the state and local coronavirus vaccine distribution, and how do you think local governments should work together to handle vaccine rollout?

At this point this it is a supply issue. We are prepared to do whatever is needed to distribute the vaccine when available and working with medical professionals.

What are the critical differences between you and the other candidates seeking this post?

As a lifelong resident of Oak Lawn with years of experience, not only within our police department, but I have political experience as a trustee and park district commissioner. I am a member of many originations which work to make for a better community

If you are a challenger, in what way has the current board or officeholder failed the community (or district or constituency)?

Our current Mayor has done a great job. Our current board is committed to Oak Lawn

What accomplishments in your past would you cite as evidence you can handle this job?

I am a decorated combat veteran of the Vietnam War (U.S. Army 1st Infantry Division).

I have almost 50 years’ experience, 14 of which were in elected offices and 34 years of work experience for the village. I have driven every street and alley many times as a police officer, so I know every corner of this town.

If you win this position, what accomplishment would make your term in office as a success?

First and foremost, I will maintain all that makes Oak Lawn a desirable place to live. As the mayor, I will work to attract new Business.

Why should voters trust you?

I have served this Village with integrity, commitment and love for all these years

What are your views on fiscal policy, government spending and the use of taxpayer dollars in the office you are seeking?

These are challenging times with not only the pandemic hurting our retail tax base, but also constant unfunded demands from Springfield.

Is there any reason you would not serve your full term of office, other than those of health or family?


The best advice ever shared with me was: Never sell your integrity (professor in police school), and “hate destroys the vessel it's contained in (author unknown)."

What else would you like voters to know about yourself and your positions?

As a park district commissioner I volunteered my time receiving no compensation. As an elected trustee, I opted out of major medical insurance and any pensions.


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