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73rd District House seat candidates

Thomas Norton

Thomas Norton was the first Republican to register as a candidate for Michigan’s 73rd District North Kent County.
Thomas Norton is a family man and lives in Sand Lake. He married Jami Marckini, and they have two daughters Sienna and Caitlyn. His parents are Edward and Iva Norton of Courtland Township. His sister Jamie Norton lives in Sparta Township. Thomas Norton has lost two brothers Mike in 1986 and Robert in 2009 (Sparta Foundry).
Norton promises to bring sound constitutional judgment, experience in business and a promise to hold meetings in every township at least once a year to make sure he is representing the district as a whole. He promises not to personally attack his opponents, just their stand on the issues and past practices as to the issues. He promises not to campaign on Sundays.
Norton has a BA in Business Administration. He attended Baker College for his associate degree and AIU for his BA.
Thomas Norton says he is running because Michigan is broken and he sees very few people with the fire to fix it.
Norton said he has turned every store and department that he has managed back into the black by thinking out side the box and utilizing the materials at hand. He has managed several different grocery departments for Meijer at their request in order to turn them around, and was a Holiday store manager. He feels this business experience makes him capable of understanding the challenges of meeting department budgets and increased sales in order to create jobs. He says he will fight for the total eradication of business taxes in order to spur permanent economic growth.
Norton is a member of the Tea Party of West Michigan, Campaign for Liberty Caucus, NRA, Michigan Fair Tax, St Paul’s Lutheran Church, Michigan Army National Guard (DOD Exempt). He also has experience in Tactical operations and Command with the Army National Guard with an Infantry MOS.
Thomas Norton’s philosophy is Constitutional Conservatism. He is Pro-life and will fight to restrict abortion at the state level to the furthest ability and authority allowed by the federal government to the states. He supports the right of people to keep and bear arms and will fight to expand the education of the CCW and simplify the process of receiving one.
Tom supports the people’s right to practice their faith separated from government. This includes the right of students to display their faith in schools. Tom will fight for and propose legislation that will protect businesses and private schools making them immune to lawsuits when they display religious symbols in their established place of business or education.
Tom believes in the fair tax, which would tax what we spend rather than what we earn. The more you buy, the more you pay in taxes; the less you buy, the less you pay in taxes. Therefore, everyone pays fairly when they choose to spend. It would also make sure everyone pays their fair share of taxes by closing loopholes.
Tom also promises to fight and defend his belief in one vote, one bill legislation. This would require that a bill that is passed through the state legislature would be required to pertain to the original spirit of the bill. In other words, a road construction bill could not contain water or sewer clean up. This would cut out pork at the state level and require the legislature to be more responsible with the people’s money.
Tom is a full supporter of public schools, charter schools and private schools. He feels that all students are worth the same amount of money. Therefore, they should have the ability to go to public, charter or private schools and the money spent on their education goes to the schools, which they attend. This way all underprivileged children can afford a school of their choice.We should have full competition and support to educate our children.
You can email Tom at   tjn73rd@localnet.com or www.votingnorton.org
Thomas Norton for 73rd district state house on Facebook
Contributions’ can be mailed to:
Committee to Elect Thomas Norton

Finance Committee

11281 Myers Lake Ave NE

Rockford, MI 49341
All other issues to:
Committee to Elect Thomas Norton
250 East Main St
Sand Lake MI 49341

Nelson runs for District 73 representative

June 10, 2010

Tim Nelson, founding pastor of BridgeWay Community Church in Rockford, community leader and conservative Republican, is running for State House of Representatives, 73rd District.
“I will bring a fresh perspective and fiscal responsibility to Lansing to help better our schools, jobs and families,” Nelson pledged. “As a community leader, I have a strong history of trusted leadership that seeks to bring solutions to the big problems we face in life. Lansing needs leaders who will bring wisdom, common sense and integrity to the larger issues we face as a state. I want to bring that same influence to Lansing to help our schools, jobs and families.”
Standing on a platform of conservative values, Nelson concluded, “I am not someone who has been padding my resume for a run for public office. I am a father of four, a concerned American citizen, and a trusted leader in our community. There is a new day dawning in American public life where people are tired of the politics as usual. They want authentic leaders who have made a difference in the lives of the people they represent. This is exactly who I am. I am not a political insider. I am a man you can trust.”
“As the founding pastor of BridgeWay Community Church, our goal was to make a generational difference in the lives of people,” added Nelson. “For the eight years I served the church, we drew people from Cedar Springs, Sparta, Kent City, Rockford and nearly every township our district covers. I understand the people of this region, their hopes and fears and the dreams they have for their children. I have been putting people first my whole career and I pledge to represent you well in Lansing.”
Nelson went on to say, “I will be running on a platform of job creation, economic vitality and reforming the school funding structure that leaves our students funding at the bottom of all students in Michigan. Our students receive $7,316 per student, which is the lowest of all the districts in Michigan. When there are districts receiving more than $12,000 per student in more wealthy districts on the east side of our state, there is a real problem of funding inequality. When my neighbors are losing their jobs, and the people in Michigan face the highest unemployment rate in the country [14.1%], it is time to act. I have four school-aged children and I want to make sure they have a strong, equitably funded education that will lead to good-paying jobs.”
“Too many people are leaving our great state,” he added, “and I want to work toward a compelling Michigan that can prevail in uncertain times. We can only accomplish this together. Government needs to get back to being by the people as well as for the people. With your support and our hard work, we can make northern Kent County an even better place to live, work and raise our families.”
Dr. Michael Shibler, Rockford Public Schools Superintendent, supports Nelson’s plan for fixing the school-funding imbalance. Also supporting Nelson is Alan Moore, Greenridge Real Estate agent; Chris Carlson, financial advisor, Edward Jones Investments; Eldon Sanders, senior pastor of Crossroads Wesleyan Church; and Ron Aulbach, senior pastor of BridgeWay Community Church.
According to Pastor Aulbach, “I have worked side by side with Tim for six years and seen first hand his desire to make a difference in the lives of people. This community is already better because of the investment he and his family have made through the local church, and will continue because of their heart to serve others. I support Tim and know him personally as a man of genuine integrity, diligent in work ethic, and motivated to tackle the issues and problems others shy away from.”
Carlson said, “As a business professional who has known Tim for years, I am fully confident that he will work hard for the people of this community and beyond. I support Tim Nelson as a candidate for House of Representatives. His conservative values and efforts to equalize funding across the state’s school districts would benefit everyone in our area.”
“I have known Tim both professionally and personally for the past 10 years,” said Sanders. “I have found him to be a gifted leader, a powerful communicator and catalyst for change. He uses his many gifts to help all people know they matter and can make a difference. He is the kind of leader and brings the kind of leadership our community needs.”
He will be holding a “Revitalize Michigan Contest” on his website to solicit people’s best ideas to bring new life to our state and region. Any idea is welcome and each week Nelson will post the winning idea. This will be a campaign for the people and by the people. Find out more from his website at www.nelson4house.com.

Steve Jazwiec

Steve J. Jazwiec has three reasons he is running for the State House of Representatives in the August 3 Republican Primary to represent the citizens, business owners and school districts of the 73rd District: his three granddaughters.

Jazwiec, currently the City of Rockford Mayor Pro Tem, has announced that he is running for term-limited Tom Pearce’s 73rd District House of Representatives seat. He realizes that our children and grandchildren are the future of our state and that the citizens of the 73rd District have a huge decision to make this election year. His proven record of being a community and educational leader, along with being an excellent problem-solver and level-headed thinker that listens to both sides, has led to an enormous amount of encouragement and support.
Jazwiec said that his platform is based on three important issues facing our state today: the economy, jobs, and fixing our structural deficit. “We need to create a climate that helps our small- and medium-sized businesses succeed in the state so they in return can hire more workers. At the same time we must fix our broken tax system so we can stabilize our funding for schools and local government,” commented Jazwiec.
Elected to Rockford’s City Council in 2001, Jazwiec served as mayor from 2003 to 2006, and is the current Mayor Pro Tem. He initially got involved with the city through his appointment to the Rockford Area Arts Commission, in which he helped start and co-chair Rockford’s Celtic Fest and later planned and implemented the successful Huntington Rogue River Blues Series. Jazwiec is a graduate and proud football alumnus of Grand Valley State University, where he received his M.Ed. in administration and B.S. in education. He has been teaching since 1977.
Our school districts are facing the same crisis as our local governments when it comes to state funding, and Jazwiec has experienced that first hand also. Jazwiec stated, “Our schools need equitable, adequate and stable funding for the future of our state, our children. We also need to stop legislating unfunded mandates and can’t wait any longer to address our structural deficit problems that have been offset by federal stimulus money the last two years.”
Community leaders have pledged support for Jazwiec’s candidacy. Superintendent of Rockford Public Schools Dr. Michael Shibler stated, “ I support Steve’s position that schools need equitable, adequate and stable funding, and that we need to fix our current structural deficit problem. He is an educational and community leader that is a strong supporter of public education. We need leaders in Lansing who understand the crisis facing education and are willing to take the decisive action needed to insure our children’s future.”
Steven R. Servaas, 63rd District Court Judge, said, “I have known Steve Jazwiec for a number of years. He is a level-headed, conservative thinker and excellent problem-solver, who is concerned about community and state matters. He is exactly the kind of person we need in the legislature.”
During his announcement, Jazwiec shared, “This election is historical. It is only the second time since World War II ended, that all four constitutional offices—Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, and Secretary of State—will be open at the same time. It would be an honor to represent the voters of the 73rd, and take part in history, if they decide to send me to Lansing this pivotal election year. I pledge to work endlessly so that the voices of the 73rd District are heard.”
You can learn more about Steve J. Jazwiec and his campaign for the State House of Representatives by going to www.SteveJazwiec.com.

Peter MacGregor

Peter MacGregor, a lifelong Michigan resident, along with his wife, Christine and three children, Patrick, John and Matthew, has called Cannon Township home for 14 years. Throughout his life, Peter has believed in public service, feeling strongly that the lessons he has learned from his years as a small business owner can be applied to government. Serving as a Cannon Township Planning Commissioner, Trustee, and for the past 5 years as its Township Supervisor, Peter has dedicated himself to this principle. During his tenure in service to Cannon Township, Peter has been instrumental in the construction of a 4 mile non-motorized public trail, expansion of law enforcement protection, and most importantly, insuring that the Township implemented the sound fiscal judgment necessary to provide vital services to its residents. As Supervisor, Peter has watched over a Township budget during a time of great economic peril in the State of Michigan. During the past 5 years, local government has seen falling revenues while costs rise. Under his leadership, Cannon Township has continued to provide a high level of service to its citizens while maintaining a budget surplus.
Peter’s commitment to community goes beyond his work at Cannon Township. Besides volunteering to coach youth sports with his children, Peter has found the time to be an active member of the Rockford Lions, serving as the club’s President from 2007 to 2008. In 2007 Peter helped found the Volley for Mitchell Charity 4 on 4 volleyball tournament to raise funds for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy research and continues to serve as one of its three co-directors.
As a former small business owner, Peter knows first-hand the challenges facing small businesses. As the owner of a local manufacturer’s representative company, selling and servicing industrial equipment, Peter applied common sense business practices that led to many years of sustained growth, eventually employing over a dozen employees.
The MacGregor Family
The personal side of Peter is grounded in his family. Married to his college sweetheart for 18 years, Peter met Christine while they were students at Michigan State University. Peter and Christine moved to West Michigan after graduation to start their family that has grown to include Patrick, John and Matthew. All three boys are students of Rockford Public Schools where Christine is employed as a paraprofessional in education. Peter and his family are avid sportsmen, enjoying golf, running, fishing, hiking, hunting and just watching their boys’ many sporting activities.
* I believe in traditional West Michigan family values.
* I believe in the sanctity of life and defending it at all costs.
* I believe in the US Constitution and that all laws should be based on the principles established in these founding documents.
* I believe in limited government with local direction.
* I believe in creating a competitive business environment that encourages economic growth and prosperity.
* I believe that the best answers to the challenges facing our state come from its citizens, not politicians in Lansing.
# Graduate of the School of Business, Michigan State University in 1988 – BA, General Business Administration
# Graduate of the Michigan Political Leadership Program, 2004
# Small business manager and owner from 1991 to 2005
# Employed 11 West Michigan residents
# Recently employed as a territory manager for a national polymer flooring company serving the West Michigan Territory.
Community Involvement:
* Member of Rockford United Methodist Church
* Cannon Township Supervisor, 2004 to present
* Cannon Township Trustee, 2001 to 2004
* Cannon Township Planning Commissioner, 1997 to 2001
* Cascade Charter Township Planning Commissioner, 1992 to 1996
* Board member of North Kent Sewer Authority, Current
* Board Member of Kent County 911 Dispatch Authority, Current
* Chairman of the Kent County Supervisor’s Assoc, 2006 to 2008
* Kent County Citizen Police Academy Graduate, 2001
* President of the Rockford Lions Club, 2007 to 2008
* Member of Rockford Lions Club
* Co-Chair; Volley for Mitchell Charity Volleyball Tournament
* Youth sports coach for community baseball, football & basketball
Facebook Page
Stay up-to-date on happenings with the campaign, Peter MacGregor, and important issues. Peter MacGregor for State Representative, 73rd District on Facebook
Website: www.electpetermacgregor.com

Dennis Smith

“The past several years have been some of the toughest in our state’s history. People tell me they want fresh bold thinking and a return to the conservative principles of less government, less taxes, a stable economy, and jobs growth,” says Dennis Smith of Cannon Township, who has joined the race to become the 73rd District’s next state representative.
“I’ve been knocking on a lot of doors in the district in recent weeks,” says Smith, “and people have repeatedly lamented that neither Lansing nor Washington seems capable of fixing the problems.” Smith, a strong pro-life, pro-family, conservative, says his other core principles of smaller government, controlling spending, lower taxes and encouraging personal responsibility have resonated well with the voters in his district.
“I’ve been both an employee and a business owner,” says Smith, a 25-year Steelcase employee who was retired last year. During that same period, Smith was the founder and owner of a statewide service organization, Information Network for Christian Homes (INCH). As an outspoken advocate for parental choice in education, Smith believes parents are the best determiners of what educational method best suits their children. Smith supports public, charter, private and home education. Because of his firm belief in fiscal responsibility, INCH was operated for the entire 25 years within budget, at a profit, and without ever incurring any debt.
Of his business acumen, Steven Turows of West Michigan Accounting Services says, “I have been the accountant for Dennis Smith and INCH for over 20 years. During that period of time, I have found Dennis to be honest and ethical in his business dealings, and a great steward of his company’s financial affairs. In my opinion, Dennis Smith is exactly the type of representative this state needs to steer us into the future.”
“I believe it was my work as executive director of INCH,” says Smith, “that best prepared me for the position of state representative. Not only did I gain a strong knowledge of sound business principles, but I was also continuously involved with the legislature during those years working to pass or defeat many bills, and working closely with many legislators. To my knowledge, I am the only candidate for the 73rd District that has any working knowledge of the legislative process, and the experience needed to get things done right from the start.”
David Kallman, a Lansing attorney, said, “I have known Dennis for 27 years and had the pleasure of working with him on many legislative issues. He has demonstrated time and again his keen grasp of the policy issues involved and he has been successful in impacting legislation at every level. He will be an effective servant and can hit the ground running once he is elected. I know the people of the 73rd District will be well served by Dennis.”
Smith also believes the “servant/leader” style of leadership he developed as the executive director of INCH will enable him to be an effective servant and leader for the citizens of both the 73rd District and all of Michigan.
A 16-year resident of Cannon Township and a 17-year resident of Plainfield Township prior to that, Smith actually considered running for the position six years ago. “I basically had two jobs at that time,” he recalls. “I didn’t see how I could mount a credible campaign with so many other responsibilities on my plate. Now, with my business transferred to new leadership and my retirement from Steelcase, I can focus on serving in an even greater capacity. I am running because I believe the conservative principles of limited government, controlling spending, and reducing the tax burden works. In the ‘80s, that’s what led to unprecedented jobs growth and prosperity. You can’t tax your way to prosperity, and you can’t redistribute wealth to create prosperity.”
Smith says he will continue to knock on doors and attend as many events as he can in the district every day possible right up to the primary election on August 3.
“I believe the best way to get to know the people, problems and potential of the 73rd District is to meet and listen to as many people as I can. This is a campaign about trust. Who will people trust to represent their interests in reducing the size and scope of government, reducing their tax burden, and create an environment that will enable new and existing businesses to once again thrive, grow, hire new employees, and prosper in Michigan? I want to earn their trust,” Smith concludes.
You can learn more about Smith’s campaign on his website at www.dennis-smith.com.

Jeanine C. Herlacher

“Through my work as a Realtor in the community for the last decade, I have paid attention to what is on the minds of people in our community,” said Jeanine Herlacher, running for state representtive for Tom Pearce’s office. “They call me when their house is about to go into foreclosure. They call me when they have lost an income and need to sell on a short sale. They call me, crying with an emergency need for a place to live. You know, when my clients aren’t sleeping at night with worry, neither am I.”
Herlacher said that is why she is running for this office. “That is why I want to represent our 73rd district community in Lansing. As a local independent contractor Realtor and Associate Broker for the last decade, I’ve literally been on nearly every street in this huge district! I understand this community from the inside of people’s homes—where they live—and they expect me to be able to help. The way things are now, I know that running for this office is the right thing to do, because it’s the best way I can really help make things better for all of our neighbors, family, and friends.”
“I believe that Michigan can and will once again become an economic leader in our nation, rather than pursuing our current rating at the bottom of the 50 states.”
Herlacher pointed out that unemployment in our state continues to be about 14 percent, the worst in the nation. However, unemployment is the result of an economic illness that can be healed! She believes the following has contributed to the problems our stateis having:
* MBT (an excessive Michigan business tax) is killing business and therefore killing jobs. The surcharge has to go, and the tax on gross receipts needs to be cut by about half.
* Over-taxation and new fees on the average citizen consume local discretionary dollars that could be spent in local businesses, therefore costing jobs and keeping job providers away from our state.
* Government take-over of our lives costs jobs and hurts our economy. We need less intrusive legislation from Lansing and more emphasis on out-of-control spending and the crisis of our schools!
“As a Realtor and Associate Broker, I have a long history of business experience.  I also attained a Business degree with honors from Northwood University, a conservative, business, leadership, and entrepreneurial focused school. I know HOW to get our state on the right track to economic recovery!” Herlacher stated. recovery!” Herlacher stated.
Following are her thoughts on Michigan politics:
* We don’t need more attorneys or professional politicians in office (they love to make new laws).  We need citizens with a long-term track record in business to serve our state.
* We are one of only 4 states in the nation with full-time legislators similarly compensated.  Our economic situation rates at the bottom of the 50 states, while our legislators pay and benefits are the second highest in the nation.  We no longer need a full-time legislature!  Serve, then Go Home, and get a job.
* We need more Representatives who will start saying, “NO” to creating laws that diminish the liberty of our citizens and “YES” to legislation that encourages job providers, and improves schools.
* If the laws passed by the House and the Senate are OK for regular-old Americans, they should be the same for the elected law-makers who pass those laws.

A long-time Republican, (her first vote was cast for Reagan) Jeanine is currently the 35th President of the Kent County Gerald R Ford Republican Women’s Club.  Known as the “Ford Women”, the club’s primary function is political education.
She attended the 2008 National Republican Convention and participated as an Alternate Delegate for the Michigan Republican Party.
Jeanine currently serves on the Kent County GOP Executive committee and was asked to
co-chair the Events Committee.
Jeanine was the Event-Chair of the first Grand Rapids “Tea Party” which drew an estimated 3000 plus crowd of area citizens interested in having a voice about what is happening to our Liberty.
Currently, Jeanine is an Associate Broker with Midwest Properties of Michigan.  As a Realtor, she is an independent contractor.  She has been a residential Realtor for the past 10 years and says that she has probably been on about every road within the entire 73rd District, at some time.
Jeanine holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Northwood University. Jeanine has been accepted into the Master’s Degree program at GVSU for Adult Education.
Jeanine and Rick celebrated their 26th anniversary last fall. Their family resides in Colorado. Rick and Jeanine have called Rockford “home” since 1999. Jeanine tells that, unlike many who say they have been one place their whole lives and that implies that they understand the area better than others, she has lived MANY places and has chosen this place as home because she knows that this truly IS the best place to call “Home”!  Rick is the Engineering/Consultanting Manager of Dematic Corporation.

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