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Pride in River Forest Candidates to Run as Group for President, Open Trustee Seats

Michael Gibbs, Lissa Druss Christman, Kevin Hanley and Tom Dwyer are running as the Pride in River Forest group for open seats on the River Forest Village Board in the April 2013 local election.

Four longtime River Forest residents have announced that they'll be working together in seeking open positions on the River Forest Village Board in the April 2013 local elections.

Michael Gibbs, Lissa Druss Christman, Kevin Hanley and Tom Dwyer are running as the Pride in River Forest group.

Gibbs, who has been a trustee in River Forest since 2008, is running for village president. Christman, Hanley and Dwyer are all first-time candidates seeking to fill three open seats in 2013 as trustees on the board.

“Our candidacy is based on growing up in the community,” Gibbs said in a press release announcing the group's intention to run. “All four of us attended neighborhood schools and were raised here. We are running as a team to ensure our children and grandchildren enjoy and experience the same great community in which we were raised.”

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Candidate Profiles:

Pride in River Forest has provided the following profiles to Patch:

Michael Gibbs: Gibbs, age 50, has lived in River Forest since 1989. He attended St. Edmund’s school in Oak Park through eighth grade and is a 1980 graduate of Oak Park & River Forest High School (OPRFHS). Gibbs is an executive with Anderson Elevator and is a committee member on Loyola University Health Systems Children’s Committee. Gibbs’ wife Sally (Dee)—a life-long River Forest resident is the vice chair of the committee. Gibbs is a former Huskie Booster Club president, serving from 1998-2008, and is a current member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. He holds a Bachelor of Arts from Loras College. Gibbs has twin girls Molly and Abby that are currently in fourth grade at Lincoln School.

Lissa Druss Christman: Druss Christman, age 43, grew up in River Forest attending Willard School, Roosevelt Middle School, is a 1986 graduate of OPRFHS and holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Arizona. She owns her own River Forest-based communications firm, LDC Communications, Inc., and is a full-time consultant with Serafin & Associates public affairs and communications firm in Chicago. Prior to starting a small business, Druss Christman spent 21 years as a television news producer working in both news and sports and has won nine Emmy awards. She and her husband Jim (media relations manager for the Chicago Bears) have one daughter, Tessa, who is in first grade at Willard. Druss Christman sits on the executive committee of Bears Care, the charitable organization for the Chicago Bears, is on the Board of Directors for the National Academy of Televisions Arts & Sciences, Chicago Chapter, and keeps up with her Italian heritage as a freelance writer for Fra Noi.

Kevin Hanley: Hanley, age 37, was born and raised in River Forest along with his eight brothers and sisters. He attended Lincoln for junior and senior kindergarten and then St. Luke’s School for the remainder of grammar school and is a 1993 graduate of Fenwick High School. Hanley holds a Business Administration degree and a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Notre Dame. Hanley has worked in financial services industry the past 15 years including Merrill Lynch where he has been for the past four years. He’s active in River Forest, serving as a little league girls softball coach, is the chairman of the Budget committee for St. Luke’s Parish Finance Council, is a member of the Trinity High School Board of Directors, serves on the River Forest Fire and Pension committee, sits on the Dominican Fathers Council and is the chairman of Old St. Patrick’s Finance Committee. He and his wife Molly (a Trinity alumna) have five children attending or about to attend St. Luke’s.

Tom Dwyer: Dwyer, age 34, was also born and raised in River Forest. He attended St. Luke’s, Lincoln School, and Roosevelt and is a 1996 graduate of OPRFHS. Dwyer holds a Bachelor of Arts in accounting from St. Norbert College and a Jurist Doctorate from The John Marshall Law School. He also holds is CPA certification and he and his father run Thomas J. Dwyer & Associates. Dwyer sits on the River Forest Traffic Safety Board. He and his wife Amy have three children that are third generation River Forest residents. They attend the River Forest Community Center, St. Luke’s and Lincoln.

More information is available at www.prideinriverforest.com.

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