Oak Park voters,
I want to recommend Brian Straw for the Village Board of Trustees in our April 4 election. I met Brian last fall after a car slammed into my family’s house, demolishing our front steps and porch, while we were in our front room near dinnertime. It was a miracle nobody was in the driver’s path and killed.
For years, village hall had shrugged off the repeated traffic collisions at our intersection, putting students crossing the street (we live near OPRF High School) in danger, not to mention my family. Failed “solutions” included a pedestrian blinker that drivers ignore every day and speed radars that appeared on our block but soon stop functioning.
In November 2022, when a stranger’s blood-soaked vehicle stayed wedged into my house for five days as the village slowly decided which approval from which agency could generate their preferred permit to have the car extracted, Brian learned what we were going through and reached out. He expressed compassion and listened to the history of inaction and the clear dangers presented by traffic mismanagement where I live. In his role on the Oak Park Transportation Commission, Brian included us in discussing which unique street features were encouraging reckless driving. He asked intelligent questions, and never dismissed my concerns.
Most importantly, he saw local government’s obligation to act. Because of Brian informing me of a specific street design I wasn’t aware of previously, I’ve been able to advocate and participate in making it happen. We’re optimistic now about a soon-to-be-safer block for everyone.
What a relief to encounter someone in the system who’s effective at achieving what is doable and helpful — not passing the buck or suggesting a long study when residents have an urgent concern with life-or-death stakes for people.
As a longtime Oak Parker, I want a village board that’s responsive and efficient and solution-oriented.
That’s why I’m voting for Brian Straw.