The Public Square

The Urbana Mayoral contest is the focus of three Public Square commentaries submitted by advocates o

The Urbana Mayoral contest is the focus of three Public Square commentaries submitted by advocates of the three candidates: Rev. Evelyn Underwood for Shirley Hursey

I am Evelyn Burnett Underwood, a retired Counselor with a Masters Degree in Education, and a Specialist in Educational Administration from Eastern Illinois University, A Doctor of Jurisprudence from Indiana University at Bloomington and a Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. I have lived in Champaign-Urbana for over fifty years. I am married to Senior Bishop King James Underwood. We have 10 children.

We have a vested interest in Urbana. We care about Urbana.

We are supporting Mrs. Shirley Hursey for mayor of the City of Urbana, and will vote for her not only because she is eminently qualified to run the City of Urbana, but also she has a vision for this city. We know that without a vision the people perish! She plans to make Urbana a premier city, a stellar city not a "little Champaign" but a unique city with a character of its own. She plans to build upon the "good" things about Urbana while bringing about innovations what will make Urbana the kind of city that people will desire to move to, live in and to raise their families, where young professionals will be drawn to and, many University of Illinois graduates will seek to remain her and work here. Everything "we" need will be right here in Urbana, "under her watch as mayor" we will not need to go to Indianapolis and Chicago to shop and to work!

Shirley Hursey has no problem with thinking outside the box. Hursey is one with the proven ability "to take things to another level"; Hursey has a "can do" attitude. Hursey has integrity and is honest!

Shirley Hursey was a hardworking and determined businesswoman, who provided opportunities and training for others; Hursey is now a retired professional utilizing her skills to provide leadership in this community generally and to organizations like the University YWCA, and outreach programs at Bethel AME Church.

Shirley Hursey believes that all men are created equal and thus embrace and celebrate diversity, as evidenced by her "earlier work" with the Council For Community Integrations, the Hayes School Neighborhood Association, her behind the scene work to get the first African American elected to the Urbana City Council, her former husband Paul Hursey, Sr., and her "out front" effort to get the first African American elected elected to the Urbana School Board, yours truly; for behind the scene and out front efforts to assist "women" in taking their place in the political arena, her work with the League of Women Voters, and her work with The Urbana Human Relations Commission.

Shirley Hurseys' negotiation and mediation background will help her to seek for a "fair middle ground" to resolve issues as mayor of the City of Urbana.

Finally, Shirley Hursey pledges to:

1. Be a mayor who in personal, private, and public discourse is guided by civility, courtesy and respect for all people. 2. Be a mayor who seeks the advice and guidance of concerned citizens and neighborhoods. 3. Be a mayor who is small business oriented and who is supportive of Urbana's established businesses. Committed to the recruitment of high quality new business, and encourage entrepreneurship. 4. Be a mayor who encourages cooperation with other units of Government, i.e., the District 116 School Board, Sister City of Champaign, Champaign County, State of Illinois, University of Illinois, and the Federal Government.

Yes, each one of us has a role! Come let us elect Shirley Hursey as mayor of Urbana, for our sake, the sake of our children and future generations! Thank you in advance for your support!!!