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County Exec Taps Son for Regional Supt.

Larry Walsh nominated his son, Shawn, to fill the rest of the Will County superintendent of school's term; the county board will decide Feb. 21.

Despite the appearance of nepotism, Will County Executive Larry Walsh has nominated his son to fill the open Will County regional superintendent of schools position.

The nomination was presented at the Will County Board's executive committee meeting Thursday and will be discussed and voted upon at the Feb. 21 county board meeting, according to a story in the Joliet Herald News.

Shawn Walsh, currently the county's assistant regional superintendent of schools, was the only qualified person to apply for the opening, created when Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant, a Shorewood Democrat who was elected to the 49th District Senate seat, Nick Palmer, Larry Walsh’s chief of staff, told the newspaper. A second candidate did not meet the qualifications, he said.

Larry Walsh told the Herald News that people should not have been afraid to apply for the job just because his son was a candidate, and if a "far superior" applicant emerged, he would have been chosen.

“I’m very, very proud of my son,” Walsh told the paper. “He’s always wanted to be involved in education and he planned his whole future on that.”

Walsh, a former state senator, took similar flack last year when another son, Larry Walsh Jr., was tapped to replace state Rep. Jack McGuire, who won the primary election and shortly thereafter decided to step down from the post. Walsh Jr. was elected to the seat in November.

At least one group is criticizing Larry Walsh Sr.'s actions. Americans for Prosperity-Illinois issued a press release Thursday urging the county board to reject the nomination.

“Unfortunately, Will County politicians seem to be vying for the top position when it comes to putting personal and family interests ahead of those of the taxpayers they were elected to serve,” AFP Illinois State Director David From wrote in the release.

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Mr. Peabody February 15, 2013 at 06:13 AM
Other qualifications required under state law are that the person: Be of good character; Be related to Will County Executive Larry Walsh ....... Same-old.
Bob February 15, 2013 at 11:43 AM
amazing he is the only qualified candidate for this position, if you don't seek you won't find, welcome to Illinois politics.......
D K February 15, 2013 at 02:08 PM
"Larry Walsh told the Herald News that people should not have been afraid to apply for the job just because his son was a candidate, and if a "far superior" applicant emerged, he would have been chosen." Wow...this says it all. Criminal.
Mike Ross February 15, 2013 at 03:05 PM
absolute crap! Larry is a nice guy and all. But its insane, was there even a job posting? Why would this even be allowed? All about who you know :)
James February 15, 2013 at 03:49 PM
When in Rome, do as the Romans do. When in Illinois, do as the rest of the politicos do; create a dynasty. The arrogance exhibited by these "Oh-fficials" continues to amaze as well as baffle me. I thought this once great country was founded in part to rid itself of the aristocracy and tyranny of such royal families.
Our Town February 15, 2013 at 05:09 PM
What does this office do that could not be done by the State School Superintendent's office? Does every county have one? Or need one? How much could the county save by closing this office? Why is this office in New Lenox and not the county seat, Joliet?
KB February 15, 2013 at 05:28 PM
There is no better candidate that I can think of for this job. - Bradley Stephens, Rosemont, IL
junior February 15, 2013 at 06:28 PM
Thanks Dad ! I won't let you down.
Kathie Miller February 15, 2013 at 07:55 PM
I have to agree with you, do we really need someone in this spot
Lee Jeffrey February 15, 2013 at 08:39 PM
The entire state is corrupt, they start at city & county level & work thir way to Springfield! What a load of horse crap.
Laura Ries Dralle February 15, 2013 at 09:53 PM
While I have not seen Shawn Walsh's resume, and I am sure he is a dedicated, hard-working individual, I still find it difficult to believe that there isn't a single other candidate with a comparable and competitive skill set.
mokenakid February 16, 2013 at 01:38 AM
What a shame. Shades of Strogers Cook County.
anonymous February 16, 2013 at 03:16 AM
And then politicians wonder why they are loathed. It's getting to the point where they don't care and that's when the trouble with the serfs usually comes to a hesd
anonymous February 16, 2013 at 03:17 AM
The sad part is nepotism is found at every level of govt.

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