On October 22, 2018 members of the Hanover Central High School Student Council invited candidates running for the Cedar Lake Town Council, Hanover Township Trustee and the Hanover Township Advisory Board to a live "Candidate Night" forum open to the community.
Hanover Central High School Student Council Members and members of the community begin to gather for the "Candidate Night" public forum.
Candidates were asked to introduce themselves, make an opening statement and respond to three questions. Each candidate had five minutes for their introduction and to respond to the questions. The first question asked by Student Council members; “Why are you the best candidate for the office you are running for?” reflected a general interest by Student Council Members in learning more about each candidate, the subsequent two questions spoke to those things that matter most to the students.
Hanover Central High School Teacher and Student Council Sponsor, Steve Gustas welcomes the candidates.
“What is your position on public education today?” and “Safety and Security in schools is a top priority. How do you advocate keeping students and staff safe in schools?” were the specific questions asked of candidates. Candidates were given the questions in advance to prepare their comments.
“It’s important that we host these forums so the that we and the public know who the candidates are and what they think about things that are important to us,” said HCHS Senior and Student Council President, Lynda Hinojosa who plans to vote in the mid-term elections on November 6th. “A lot of people don’t vote and are uninformed about the candidates,” she added.
Student Council Vice President, Ellen Connor, who won’t be old enough to vote in this election shared the stage with Hinojosa and asked questions of the candidates.
It was clear both young ladies were listening carefully to the answers offered by the candidates. “I liked when one of the candidates talked about the need for public education to provide life skills,” said Ellen Connor. “I am fortunate that my family has taught me many of those skills, but I have a lot of friends who aren’t as fortunate.” Lynda Hinojosa echoed her Student Council colleague and added; “I also was impressed that several candidates talked about vocational programs and trade school training, because let’s be honest, not all students are going to go to college.”
Both young women were pleased to hear candidates talk about building public relationships and having therapists on site in the schools as a step toward increased safety and security.
Hanover Central High School Student Council Members hosting the event (in alphabetical order) were: Ellen Connor, Madison Fanta, Natalie Haitsma, Norah Heeter, Lynda Hinojosa, Kaylee Huyser, Skyler Lea, Jessica Meier, Katie Sarna, Lauren Schmal, Maddy Setzer, Brooke Zieminski and Kylie Zieminski.
Candidates shown (l to r) are: Rich Niemeyer, David Uzelac (representing Steve Hyatt), Randy Niemeyer, Tracy Lee Haskell, Julie Rivera, Diane Jostes, Charles Kortokrax and Adam Wornhoff. Present, but not pictured, Jim Hunley.
Candidates appearing were: Cedar Lake Town Council Ward 5 – Randy Niemeyer and Charles Kortokrax, Cedar Lake Town Council Ward 1 –Steve Hyatt (absent, represented by David Uzelac), Cedar Lake Town Council Ward 3 – Julie Rivera, Hanover Township Trustee – James Hunley and Kevin Toth (absent, represented by Jerri Toth), Hanover Township Board – Tracy Lee Haskell, Diane Jostes, Richard Niemeyer, and Adam Wornhoff. (Unable to attend – Robert Carnahan, Maralynn Echterling and Norman Stick).
Refreshments were served and conversation encouraged following the formal Candidate Night forum.
Thank you to the Candidates that were able to join the Hanover Central High School Student Council at the 2018 Candidate Night Forum.